A 6 Week Workshop led by Shalva Makharashvili and Andrea Kuzmich
WEDNESDAY 7-9 PM October 9 to November 13 2019.
at the MusiCamp studio
$250 for new participants; $200 for repeat students
More info or register by email through our contact page
Have a quick peek at workshop leader, Shalva and his children singing with Basiani, a traditional Georgian choir. (Click on the photo.)
Take part in a Georgian singing workshop and join the thousands of voices before you that have contributed to this millennia-old folk tradition. Georgia, is located in the mountainous region of the Caucasus, the crossroads of Europe and Asia. Its ancient singing tradition, known for its distinctive and haunting harmonies, was recognized by UNESCO as an intangible masterpiece of humanity in 2001. The 3-part form defies Western conventions and comes in a plethora of musical dialects, reflecting the diverse geographical and cultural makeup of the land.
Canada’s foremost experts in Georgian polyphony, Georgian-born singer/multi-instrumentalist Shalva Makharashvili
and his Toronto-born partner, Andrea Kuzmich
, will be leading the workshop. Andrea is an academic (PhD ABD) who has presented and published papers on Georgian music to international audiences. Both Shalva and Andrea were featured soloists in Darbazi
; founded the award-winning trio ZARI
; perform with their family ensemble Ori Shalva
; led Georgian workshops and/or have collaborated with many groups in Canada, including VIVA Youth Singers, Aradia Ensemble, UofT Vocal Jazz Ensemble, Young Voices of Toronto and Folk Camp
; and have exposed many in Toronto (enthusiastic amateur singers to professional musicians and composers) to the intricacies of Georgian polyphony through regular workshops they lead out MusiCamp.
In this series, we’ll take a look a variety of regional styles and song-types (harvest/work/travel/table/love songs and chants). At the end of the 6 weeks we’ll have a little performance for friends and family… and a little toast – to keep it in the Georgian tradition…
To register for the workshop send us an email through the contact us page.
For some samples of Georgian songs have a listen to Shalva’s and Andrea’s trio soundcloud playlist or visit their website ZARI
Tuesday October 15
7:00 to 8:00 PM
in Dufferin Grove Park at the shelter in the playground
More dates and locations to be added so stay tuned…
About 4 years ago, MusiCamp’s director and founder, Andrea Kuzmich, started exploring ways to use body percussion in our kid’s summer camps. It not only functioned as a pedagogical tool to help with rhythm and arranging, but also heightened the excitement of any song – and really was inspired by Andrea’s interest to instantaneously make a party-like atmosphere, any where, any time, without instruments, but through the body alone!
This past spring (June 2019) she was honoured to lead workshops on body percussion at the Ontario Womyn’s Drum Camp. In prep to do so, she started hosting informal body percussion sessions with adults at the MusiCamp studio.
With an interest to share and develop these skills more, Andrea will be hosting all-ages open workshops starting Tuesday September 24 to in Dufferin Grove park (meet at the shelter in the playground). More dates and locations will be added so visit back to hear more or sign up below and we’ll keep you updated. And feel free to have a look at our videos below.
Body Percussion Festival 2018
Body Percussion from our summer camps
This week is all about the GROOVE! and making ancient West African Drumming fun, accessible and challenging, all at the same time.
West African Drum Camp
Loosening your hands
- NO DRUM NEEDED!
- explore polyrhythms on djembes and dunun (a series of double headed drums played on their side)
- build instruments (diddley bos or bucket basses) and explore aspects of rhythm and acoustics
- sing songs and learn dances relevant to the rhythms
- and tap into the ancient knowledge of the West African Mande musical tradition
This goes way beyond a drum circle! Campers will not only learn patterns on djembe and develop skills to solo but will also learn the interlocking patterns on the dunun – the soul of the West African Mande drumming tradition. These rhythms can be extremely challenging, even to pro drummers!
Learning to play dunun
Masks and dance
Masks and dance
But with the guidance of guest instructor Anna Melnikoff, West African Drumming week at MusiCamp is set up to engage and teach the absolute inexperienced while at the same time provide on-going challenges for advanced drummers. And of course, at the end of the week, campers will perform for friends and family!
End of Week Performance 2013
Below is a slightly edited video is from our 2013 week-end performance of the children-composed rhythm “Timbaraba.”
NOTE: Because the speakers of computers and portable devices aren’t designed to capture the bass, to hear the dunun pattern you need to listen to this video with headphones or good speakers.
Although it is difficult to see, at the back left are 3 double headed drums known as dunun. The dunun play a complex interlocking rhythm upon which the djembes play another rhythm or solo.
Check out our MusiCamp Flickr Gallery for more pics of MusiCamp
ICE CREAM! is an original composition by MusiCampers Click to learn more about it!
Have a song you want to sing? A story you want to tell? Through a series of musical games, exercises, songwriting workshops and the study of different elements of music, aspiring songwriters and singers put their ideas to music.
Stringing up diddley bos
Practicing bucket basses
Set List for end of week performance
Painting bucket basses
In a fun and practical way, campers are introduced to aspects of songwriting, like hooks, riffs, harmony, and rhythmic accompaniment, chorus-verse format, basic chord progressions, intros and outros, rhyming and storytelling – useful skills/review for even the more experienced song-writers.
Besides the tonne of musical games and other fun-in-the-park activities we do every week (including pizza-making in the park), campers will:
- build and compose on there own instruments (diddley bos or bucket basses)
- learn about composition and form, intros/outros, verses/choruses, hooks, accompaniment, etc.
- explore and recognize a variety of chord progressions
- write lyrics, compose and arrange their own songs
By the end of the week campers will have written and/or collaborated on the creation of original songs and arrangements. Kids who already have basic instrumental skills are encouraged to bring their instrument. The week ends with a world premiere performances of our songwriter’s compositions!
Composition & Song Performance
Check out our MusiCamp Flickr Gallery for more pics of MusiCamp
The Georgians are coming!
It is a very rare opportunity that 6 members of Didgori will be touring Canada from late May to mid June 2019. The last and only time a choir from Georgia was touring Canada was in the 1970s. This time, Didgori will not just be performing but also hosting singing workshops, with stops in Edmonton, Winnipeg, Toronto, and other parts or Eastern Canada. Scroll down to view their Canadian tour schedule to date.
The award winning Didgori ensemble has been performing internationally since 2004 and has toured Russia, Turkey, UK, France, Switzerland, Israel, Poland, Uzbekistan, the Czech Republic and Latvia. Declared an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO in 2001, the millennial old Georgian polyphonic singing tradition, with its close harmonies and untempered scales, is often described as transformatively visceral. It features 3-part singing in a variety of styles, from hauntingly melismatic lyrical genres to exploding counterpoint.
Have a listen to a sampler track compiled from Didgori’s most recent CD Singing as a Lifestyle
As can be heard from the variety of songs in the above sampler, Didgori are masters of a variety of Georgian musical styles, the wide variety of which reflects the diverse and complex landscape that has housed the Georgian people for thousands of years. Didgori is dedicated to the traditions of their ancestors through mastery and popularization of Georgian polyphonic folk songs and chants, and to the hope that their efforts will inspire future generations. The name, Didgori, honours a historical battle in 1121 that helped reunite Georgia and ushered in a period of growth in arts and culture.
Watch them perform (and even dance!) an Abkhaz round dance in the video above or listen to a performance of a chant in the audio player below.
Current Listing of Performances and Workshops