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Music Courses

SOAS World Music Summer School 2017

Now for the 15th year running, SOAS is proud to offer an exciting summer school of world music. This summer once again we offer an exciting and varied programme with something for everyone:  Intensive and inspiring courses, practical workshops, taster sessions and master classes for students of all backgrounds, beginners to advanced, amateur and professional. Take your pick!

 

What people say about the SOAS Summer School music courses:

"I learnt something new, fun and rewarding, in a friendly and relaxed environment."

"Excellent experience of learning, interaction and collaboration."

"The best training course I have been on - fascinating, instructional, relaxed and very productive."

"Highly enjoyable, educational and musically challenging."

More details & booking info: www.soas.ac.uk/summermusicschool 

Programme subject to change.

Music Courses

A World of Jewish Song: Saturday 24th June, 2017

A World of Jewish Song: Saturday 24th June, 2017

Description

Date: Saturday 24th June, 10.30am – 4pm

Course Fee: £85 (Concessions £75)

This course offers an opportunity to explore a rich array of songs in Hebrew, Yiddish and Ladino - some also including English lyrics. The material will focus partly on Judith’s own compositions (including some from her songbook, 'Jewish Songs for Harmony Singing') and include priceless gems from both folk and liturgical sources. Harmonies and opportunities to improvise will abound and everyone is welcome, regardless of experience. With Judith Silver.

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Afro-Brazilian Berimbau: Monday 19th – Friday 23rd June, 2017

Afro-Brazilian Berimbau: Monday 19th – Friday 23rd June, 2017

Description

Dates: Monday 19th – Friday 23rd June, 6-8pm

Course Fee: £115 (Concessions £95)

The berimbau (music bow) is one of the oldest instruments known to humankind; a simple instrument made of a wooden bow, a gourd and a string, and a stick to strike against the string to produce the distinctive deep resonant sound. In this course we are going to explore the soundscapes of the African diaspora via the berimbau, the music bow imported to Brazil via the slave trade, best known for its use in the capoeira martial arts dance. The sessions will be relaxed and hands-on and will focus mainly on the music of capoeira. Small doses of African history and Portuguese language will be also included in the sessions. The berimbao is for everyone - come and play! With Cesar Cuyami Mesari

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Afrocuban Batá Drumming & Orisha Songs: Monday 3rd – Friday 7th July, 2017

Afrocuban Batá Drumming & Orisha Songs: Monday 3rd – Friday 7th July, 2017

Description

Dates: Monday 3rd – Friday 7th July, 7-9pm

Course Fee: £115 (Concessions £95)

Batá drumming is considered to be one of the great cultural treasures of the African Diaspora. The cornerstone of Cuban percussive arts, batá drumming is over 500 years old, and was brought to the island by Yoruba bondsmen during the Atlantic Slave trade. The drums accompany songs in praise of the Orisha, the deities and nature spirits of the Afrocuban religion Santeria. This course will cover some of the more popular rhythms and teach a spread of songs for several important Orishas. With Crispin Robinson

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Arabic Music ‘Playgroup’: Monday 3rd – Friday 7th July, 2017

Arabic Music ‘Playgroup’: Monday 3rd – Friday 7th July, 2017

Description

Dates: Monday 3rd – Friday 7th July, 6-8pm

Course Fee: £115 (Concessions £95)

This is a hands-on taster course introducing basic concepts and patterns of Middle Eastern music in a simple, playful method for anyone who is interested to improve their understanding of it. Participants will gain a basic understanding of Middle Eastern music theory and modulations (maqam) taught through an original, playful system where core elements of select maqams turn into colourful pieces of ‘lego’. By connecting the auditory with the visual and by playing with different sequences of ‘lego’ pieces, students will be able to explore Arabic music in a fun way, both in theory and through performance. For intermediate players of any musical instrument, including vocals. With Maya Youssef.

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Balinese Gamelan: Monday 10th – Saturday 15th July, 2017

Balinese Gamelan: Monday 10th – Saturday 15th July, 2017

Description

Dates: Monday 10th – Saturday 15th July, Mon-Fri 7-9pm, Sat 11am-5pm

Course Fee: £115 (Concessions £95)

A unique opportunity to learn to play the sweet-sounding seven-tone Balinese gamelan based at SOAS. A gamelan is an elaborate percussion orchestra, comprising bronze gongs and metallophones which play complex interlocking melodic and rhythmic patterns led by a pair of drums. This particular gamelan, the semar pegulingan saih pitu, is unusually beautiful and is the only one of its kind in the UK. Students will be encouraged to play all the instruments in the ensemble and will learn a traditional piece of Balinese music. With Andy Channing.

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Circlesinging: Monday 19th June - Friday 3rd July, 2017

Circlesinging: Monday 19th June - Friday 3rd July, 2017

Description

Dates: Mon 19 June - Fri 3 July, 6-8pm
course fee £115 (concs £95)
 
Circle songs are a form of spontaneous music-making and collaborative singing. In this experiential workshop we will develop skills of ensemble singing - blend, balance, tuning and sensitivity. Circle Songs also strengthen musicianship, understanding harmony and counterpoint, rhythmic precision and deep listening. Avaluable tool for all singers and musicians, music andvoice teachers and group facilitators. Aimed at anybody willing to experience group singing and sharing, who want to expand their musicianship and creativity, and discover melodic and rhythmic patterns from diverse musical traditions that can be applied to enhance their own musical language, through a process of sharing and vocal experimentation.
With Guillermo Rozenthuler
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Classical Indian Singing: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 2017

Classical Indian Singing: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 2017

Description

Dates: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 6-8pm

Course Fee: £115 (Concessions £95)

 Musical expression through the voice is regarded as one of the foundations in the art of Indian Classical Music. This course offers introduction to Classical Indian voice culture and singing styles, as well as the melodic concept of the raag, including composition and improvisation within a given raag (mode). There will be basic theory, traditional warm up exercises, learning about the rhythmic structures, in-depth practical work on two raags, and more. Suitable for all levels. With Mehboob Nadeem.

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Community Music Leadership for Peacebuilding and Social Change: Monday 24th – Thursday 27th July, 2017

Community Music Leadership for Peacebuilding and Social Change: Monday 24th – Thursday 27th July, 2017

Description

Dates: Monday 24th – Thursday 27th July, 10am – 5pm

Course Fee: £400 (Concessions £360)

Musicians without Borders has partnered with the MA Music in Development at SOAS (University of London) to organize a weekend seminar entitled War, fear, empathy, and music. The seminar will be followed by 4-day’s training for musicians in practical uses of community music for peacebuilding and social change. These are separate programmes, but their content is complementary. People may enroll in either or both.

Musicians without Borders (MwB) is a pioneer in the use of music for reconciliation, community building and healing for people suffering from the effects of war and armed conflict. The organization has implemented successful long-term projects in the Balkans (Kosovo, Bosnia-Herzegovina), the Middle East (Palestine), Central East Africa (Rwanda, Uganda, Tanzania) and Europe (Northern Ireland), training more than 250 local musicians and talented youth as music workshop leaders.

This training is open to musicians who are active as workshop leaders, teachers or social activists and wish to develop their knowledge of using music as a tool for peacebuilding and social change. In this four-day course, participants will be introduced to the methodology behind Musicians without Borders’ community music training program. Participants will be led through a variety of musical activities focused on developing leadership skills while exploring concepts related to creativity, improvisation, and non-violence. The training prepares participants to lead community music workshops that foster empathic connections between people within an inclusive and safe environment. With Otto de Jong, Chris Nicholson and Amanda Koser-Gillespie

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Cuban Music Big Band: Monday 19th June - Friday 3rd July, 2017

Cuban Music Big Band: Monday 19th June - Friday 3rd July, 2017

Description

Dates: Monday 19th – Friday 23rd June, 6-8pm

Course Fee: £115 (Concessions £95)

Whatever your instrument, here’s a chance to play some classic Cuban styles: Son, Mambo, Cha Cha Cha, Latin Jazz… The course will look at rhythms, structure, arrangement & improvisation within those musical forms. All levels & instruments welcome - arrangements will be customized to the instruments present. One of our most popular courses, sessions will be varied, hands-on and a lot of fun!

With Sara McGuinness, Elpidio Alegria and Jimmy Martinez

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Elements of Rhythm: Monday 19th – Friday 23rd June, 2017

Elements of Rhythm: Monday 19th – Friday 23rd June, 2017

Description

Dates: Monday 19th – Friday 23rd June, 6-8pm

Course Fee: £115 (Concessions £95)

This workshop is for anyone interested in understanding essential concepts and devices of rhythm found in musical styles from around the world. Improve your sense of rhythm and structure, apply the rhythms and patterns in your own instrument or use the ideas as a tool in composition and teaching. We will look at elements like rhythmic compositions, shapes and phrases in South Indian music, long rhythmic cycles from Ottoman music, multi-layered grooves from Brazil and Morocco, and how to play Sandansko Horo in 22/8. We will also explore rhythm as a compositional tool inspired by world music styles (timeline, layering, polyrhythms, cross rhythms, moving bass, and more). For intermediate/experienced players of any instrument. Percussion instruments will be provided, or bring your own - all welcome!

With Vasilis Sarikis

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Flamenco Rhythms & Percussion (Cajón): Monday 3rd – Friday 7th July, 2017

Flamenco Rhythms & Percussion (Cajón): Monday 3rd – Friday 7th July, 2017

Description

Dates: Monday 3rd – Friday 7th July, 6-8pm

Course Fee: £115 (Concessions £95)

**You need to bring your own instrument for this course, or contact us for hire options**

This is a hands-on taster course introducing the flamenco rhythms (Buleria, Seguirias, Solea, Tangos, Alegria etc) on the cajón. ‘Cajón’ (pronounced ca-hon) means drawer or box in Spanish. It originates from Peru where it is used in folk music styles such as Festejo. Legend has it that the African slaves in Peru started playing their grooves on the fishing and packing boxes where they worked when slave-owners banned their African drums. The Peruvian cajón then found its way to the loving hands of Paco De Luciai, who developed the guitar string system to create a more snarey sound. With Zafer Demir.

Zafer Demir is a jazz percussionist, saz player, and music teacher. He holds a Bachelor of music degree in World Music performance from Malmo Academy of Music and a Master’s degree in World Music from the Royal College of Music in Stockhol. He studied ethnomusicology at Uppsala university, Sweden, and holds a diploma from Berklee College of Music, Boston.
 
He has played with various World Music, jazz and pop groups in the Nordic countries, Germany, France, Finland, Switzerland, Holland, Belgium, Armenia, USA, UK and India and with different jazz musicians such as Richard Bona, John Stowell, Adam Rudolph and Willy Kotoun.
 
He has recently been accepted for PhD in World Music-Improvisation at Brunel University London.
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Indian Tabla: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 2017

Indian Tabla: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 2017

Description

Dates: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 5-8pm

Course Fee: £115 (Concessions £95)

The tabla drums with their unique melodic sound are the backbone of Classical Indian music, in particular Hindustani (Northern Indian) music. This course is an introduction to the rhythmic structures (taal) of Indian Classcial music, as well as basic playing techniques, embracing both the theoretical foundations as well as hands-on drumming. Suitable for beginners, instruments will be provided. With Sanju Sahai.

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Kora: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 2017

Kora: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 2017

Description

Dates: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 7-9pm

Course Fee: £115 (Concessions £95)

The Mandinka kora is a unique instrument with 21 strings. It sounds a bit like a harp, but its intricate playing style is closer to flamenco guitar. Kadialy Kouyate comes from the south of Senegal and belongs to the great line of Kouyate griots. He is a gifted performer but also highly regarded as a kora teacher, regularly teaching under- & postgraduate courses at SOAS. This is a taster course for beginners – limited places! Instruments provided. With Kadialy Kouyate.

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Mbira: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 2017

Mbira: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 2017

Description

Dates: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 7-9pm

Course Fee: £115 (Concessions £95)

The Mbira (also referred to as thumb piano) is central to Zimbabwean musical traditions. It is used in Shona spiritual ceremonies to call upon the spirits, through a repertoire of ancient songs, passed down through generations. More recently it has also found its way into popular music. In the course you will learn some of these songs, progressing to add vocals & variations. The course is suitable for beginners, but will also offer deeper insights for those with some experience. Original instruments will be available for use or purchase. With Linos Wengara Magaya & Tim Lloyd

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Middle Eastern Maqam Ensemble: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 2017

Middle Eastern Maqam Ensemble: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 2017

Description

Dates: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 5-7pm

Course Fee: £115 (Concessions £95)

Bring your instrument (any!) and learn to play Middle Eastern music, based of the melodic concept of maqam. The course will introduce Maqam theory and scales, principles of improvisation, typical rhythms and ensemble pieces arranged for the group selected from arabic music repertoire. For fluent players on any instrument including vocals With Louai Alhenawi, a Syrian-born performer, teacher and composer. He specializes in the ney (Arabic flute), Arabic percussion (dabuka, daff and riqq) and Middle Eastern music. Louai studied at the eminent Damascus Conservatoire, where he also spent a year teaching, and held the position of ney soloist in the Syrian National Symphony Orchestra and the National Arabic Orchestra. Since moving to the UK in 2002 Louai has been directing Middle Eastern music and percussion workshops for all age groups and in a variety of settings, promoting Arabic music and culture in an enjoyable way. 

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Middle Eastern Percussion: Darbuka: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 2017

Middle Eastern Percussion: Darbuka: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 2017

Description

Dates: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 7-9pm

Course Fee: £115 (Concessions £95)

The darbuka, a hand-drum common throughout the Arab cultural sphere, originated from the Middle East around 2000 years ago. A skilled player can tease a complex range of sharp and deep sounds from this goblet shaped drum. It is an easy instrument to learn and yet has a surprising emotional range. The course will introduce basic playing techniques & essential rhythms, as well as an overview on Middle Eastern percussion. Beginners welcome. With Louai Alhenawi, a Syrian-born performer, teacher and composer. He specializes in the ney (Arabic flute), Arabic percussion (dabuka, daff and riqq) and Middle Eastern music. Louai studied at the eminent Damascus Conservatoire, where he also spent a year teaching, and held the position of ney soloist in the Syrian National Symphony Orchestra and the National Arabic Orchestra. Since moving to the UK in 2002 Louai has been directing Middle Eastern music and percussion workshops for all age groups and in a variety of settings, promoting Arabic music and culture in an accessible and enjoyable way. All levels are welcome.

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Mongolian Overtone Singing: Monday 19th – Friday 23rd June

Mongolian Overtone Singing: Monday 19th – Friday 23rd June

Description

Dates: Monday 19th – Friday 23rd June, 7-9pm

Course Fee: £115 (Concessions £95)

Khöömii is an amazing style of overtone or harmonic singing where one person sings two or more distinct pitches at the same time. It originates among the nomadic people of Central Asia, particularly the mountain regions of Mongolia and Tuva. This workshops is an opportunity to learn this authentic traditional Mongolian technique. Listen to your own overtones as you discover the unknown depths and heights of your voice through these enchanting sounds. Open to anyone who wishes to explore the harmonic nature of their voice. With Michael Ormiston & Candida Valentino.

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Russian Harmonies: Songs of the Steppes and the Cities: Saturday 1st July, 2017

Russian Harmonies: Songs of the Steppes and the Cities: Saturday 1st July, 2017

Description

Date: Saturday 1st July, 11am - 5pm

Course Fee: £85 (Concessions £75)

Russian songs embrace the whole of the landscape and all of Mother Earth. Lyrical songs call to mind the vastness of Russian topography stretching toward a boundless horizon. Every snowflake and every blade of grass embodies the spirits of nature – and this connection is felt within each song for rituals, holidays, circle dances, laments, weddings, the Russian Art song (The Romance) and lyrical songs... Come and experience Russian harmonies through song. Music lovers of all backgrounds and singing levels are invited, no experience necessary. Learning by ear. With Polina Skovoroda-Shepherd

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Sámi Joik: Monday 26th – Tuesday 27th June, 2017

Sámi Joik: Monday 26th – Tuesday 27th June, 2017

Description

Dates: Monday 26th – Tuesday 27th June, 6-8pm

Course Fee: £85 (Concessions £75)

 

The Sámi people live across the borders of northern Scandinavia, Finland, and throughout the Kola Peninsula of north-western Russia. Joik is their characteristic vocal tradition, consisting of units of sound that have traditionally been used to invoke a person, animal, place, or experience. Formerly practiced by Sámi shamans in order to facilitate communication with the spirit world, joik continues to engage with the sacred on an essential level; one does not joik ‘about’ something; one simply ‘joiks it’. On this two-part course, Merlyn Driver takes you on a journey through joik, encompassing both its key musical and philosophical components.

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Seminar on War, Fear, Empathy and Music: Saturday 22nd – Sunday 23rd July, 2017

Seminar on War, Fear, Empathy and Music: Saturday 22nd – Sunday 23rd July, 2017

Description

Dates: Saturday 22nd – Sunday 23rd July, 10am – 5pm

Course Fee: £200 (Concessions £180)

 

Musicians without Borders has partnered with the MA Music in Development at SOAS (University of London) to organize a weekend seminar entitled War, fear, empathy, and music. The seminar will be followed by 4-day’s training for musicians in practical uses of community music for peacebuilding and social change. These are separate programmes, but their content is complementary. People may enroll in either or both.

 

Musicians without Borders (MwB) is a pioneer in the use of music for reconciliation, community building and healing for people suffering from the effects of war and armed conflict. The organization has implemented successful long-term projects in the Balkans (Kosovo, Bosnia-Herzegovina), the Middle East (Palestine), Central East Africa (Rwanda, Uganda, Tanzania) and Europe (Northern Ireland), training more than 250 local musicians and talented youth as music workshop leaders.

 

This two-day seminar will introduce the philosophical, theoretical and experiential basis for MwB’s work and mission in using music to connect communities, bridge divides and heal the wounds of war. MwB’s founder and director, Laura Hassler, project manager and music therapist Chris Nicholson (Rwanda) and assistant trainer Amanda Koser-Gillespie (Northern Ireland) will speak on how community music and music therapy is applied within their projects in current and post-conflict regions. They will be joined by Angela Impey (Convenor, MA Music in Development) and other researchers who will speak to the relevance of cultural listening and explore how music is used in different contexts as a medium for self-representation, as political testimony, and as a catalyst for social change.

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Senegalese Sabar Drumming: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 2017

Senegalese Sabar Drumming: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 2017

Description

Dates: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June, 6.30-9pm

Course Fee: £115 (Concessions £95)

The Sabar drum is played with a stick and palm technique. A form of drumming once reserved for Senegalese royalty, today, Sabar music is found at all kinds of social events such as weddings, births, as well as popular events such as wrestling matches. Sabar rhythms also define the popular Mbalax sound behind many great Senegalese artists such as Youssou N'Dour and Baaba Maal. All levels welcome, instruments provided. With Modou Diouf.

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Songbirds: Music Making in Hospital: Saturday 24th June, 2017

Songbirds: Music Making in Hospital: Saturday 24th June, 2017

Description

Date: Saturday 24th June, 10am – 5pm

Course Fee: £115 (Concessions £95)

 

Music making in hospital provides opportunities for communication and interaction, placing patients at the heart of an individualised creative experience. This workshop will give an overview of the clinical, acoustic and emotional environment of a hospital and explore practical techniques used in bedside music making. Through a series of developmental exercises, you will have the opportunity to develop skills in person-centred, nonverbal music making, musical communication and conversation. You will also learn about the importance of observation skills within this setting and have the opportunity to try out a range of musical activities using voice, body and percussion. No musical knowledge is assumed in this workshop, but bring your instrument if you have one. With specialist practitioner Ros Hawley

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TaKeTiNa: Saturday 15th – Sunday 16th July, 2017

TaKeTiNa: Saturday 15th – Sunday 16th July, 2017

Description

Dates: Saturday 15th – Sunday 16th July, 11am-6pm

Course Fee: £200 (Concessions £180)

 

TaKeTiNa is a highly accessible moving meditation process that uses archetypal rhythms, the voice & movement to heal and transform; taking participants on a journey between order and chaos; stimulating neural networking and inviting your body and mind to deep states of relaxation and heightened awareness.

 

It is used by thousands of people around the world as a meditation practice, a radical new method of learning, a direct spiritual path for personal transformation and a leading-edge music therapy and training. 

 Requiring no prior experience with music or meditation and inviting participants to go at their own pace, TaKeTiNa is an extremely relevant tonic for the complexity & acceleration of our times. This meditation offers us a direct & vitalising encounter with ourselves, with rhythm, and with life. With Be Ward and Aline Schurgers. (www.taketina.com   www.beward.wixsite.com/taketina)

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World Music in the Classroom: Thursday 20th July, 2017

World Music in the Classroom: Thursday 20th July, 2017

Description

Dates: Thursday 20th July, 10am – 4pm

Course Fee: £115 (Concessions £95)


A practical day of activities and ideas to help you include music and musical techniques from around the world in your classroom. If you work with students from middle primary to GCSE, this day course will give you ideas for composing, performing and listening activities, using music from a variety of world traditions. By the end of the course you will have lesson plans, ideas, songs, techniques and ideas for assessment, which will help you develop a vibrant and inclusive music curriculum. With Patrick Allen.

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