Classes with Inga
Circle Songs with Inga (a progressive series)
Get comfortable with just making sound with your voice. Then feel the beauty and excitement of contributing to a choir of sound. Inga will lead a variety of vocal improvisation games that start off very simply and build on each other as the weekend unfolds. Together we can learn important skills such as rhythmic groove, harmonic structure, motif development, etc,… As we progress, we’ll apply these musical skills to common chord progressions.
Your Sound, Your Story – Meet the Song
Inga will introduce you to personalizing a song and singing your story. Learning ways to get inside a lyric and making musical choices based on what you’d like to convey emotionally, allows the song to become you. Having done workshops with dancers, Inga has learned some movement exercises that are very helpful in getting closer to your emotional connection to a song. Then we can transfer that to sound.
Classes with Sam
A term coined by Bobby McFerrin, CircleSong refers to a group collaborative song created in the moment. This experience in CircleSong will be directed/conducted by Sam who will take turns improvising vocal/body music parts and giving them out to the participants, who then also have some room to improvise. The workshop will provide a nurturing and fun space for students to incorporate what they have learned from other workshops on body music/singing/beatboxing/etc. as well as make new discoveries through this beautifully adaptable structure.
Human Sound Exploration
This entertaining and accessible workshop is all about of how to create — and be creative with — your body and music. This is a delightful icebreaking session for all who are willing to play. Though his simplified principles of sound, step-by-step demonstrations, fun activities, and rapid-fire humor, even those needing a high level of stimulus will remain engaged and challenged while the more methodical students get the structure they need to learn. By the end of the workshop, everyone will be making music with their bodies and (more importantly) hearing sound in a whole new way!
Rhythm Made Real
Even very talented vocalists are sometimes lacking in their rhythmic skills. This workshop is open to all levels of singers who are willing to recite the mantra “Rhythm above all.” But what is rhythm? And how does it work? What is the mystical “groove” musicians talk about? Here Sam draws upon his work with teachers like Reinhard Flatischler (TaKeTiNa, Megadrums), Pete Magadini (Musician’s Guide to Polyrhythms, Mose Allison), and Keith Terry (body percussion, Crosspulse), as well as his own extensive rhythmic experiments. Students will receive a few distilled concepts and key experiences that allow them to deeply discover rhythm for themselves.
Scat Made Safe
Beginning and intermediate vocalists make great strides towards overcoming their fear of improvisation in this interactive workshop. Sam emphasizes the power of the ear to overcome any music obstacle, connecting with students by relating his own personal experiences in musical development and creating a safe environment to share and learn from each other. The primary focus is to help students connect to their music in creative new ways, rather than the traditional, theoretical approach. One or more of this workshop’s targeted exercises will feed students just what they need to make their next musical step into vocal improvisation.
Classes with Andy
Storytelling with Our Wits About Us
Andy believes firmly that any story that doesn’t contain a since of wit is not a story worth hearing. Wit is the highest form of humor, and when we imbue a story and its characters with wit – even a serious story – (wither those characters be ourselves or others) the listener falls in love with those characters. Wit brings the characters to life, and what ever tribulations or joys befall those characters begin to matter. Wit allows the listener to breathe. It opens up the teller to listen for – as Tom Stoppard put it – the sound of comprehension (laughter). Oh, and another thing: wit is the impetus for story phrasing. Some would call that comic timing. Okay, fine, call it that if you will. But know this, musicians: comic timing and musical phrasing is the same thing and it exists for the same reasons.
So, we will explore funniness and emotional cognitive connections with how one emotion opens us up to all emotions, so that we may feel our stories (and our singing) all the more.
Wit makes us wise.
We shall all be wise gals and guys.
Knowing Our Stories
In order to tell stories, in conversation and/or presentation, we really need to know how to make up stories. Even if it’s content that is “not our own” it should become our own in the telling. We will begin by being all into ourselves and creating self centered verse using the handy-dandy “Where I’m From” poetry template.
After a while, the more we learn about each other, the more we will know we are more alike than not. When we understand our own stories, the more we can understand the stories of others. It’s the old: “When you know another’s you can’t hate them” blah, blah, blah. Yes, that is indeed true.
All of this will lead us to a world of discovery. (I am always surprised by how much I learn, my own self, during these workshops.) We will play as we build our stories.
Play. Yes. Play.
I like to think of a story as a sort of one-person play. I tell my college actors all the time: this thing we are doing is called a play. Now, go play!
Classes with Margo
Backup Singing Intensive
Backup singing is different from solo singing. This class introduces you to the skills of being a backup singer.
Margo will show you how to: 1) Sing harmony 2) Blend your voice with other voices to create one harmonious sound 3) “Carve” a song to sing backup like the pros 4) Sing backup to a variety of musical genres
Out-of-the-Box Singing Class; Connect with Your Inner Artist
Learn to break free and connect to the artist within. This class is designed to:
Free singers to be themselves—in the present moment—while they are singing Enable singers to express their deepest emotions about their music Help singers find the balance between technical discipline and letting go—to experience singing freedom Singers learn to feel—while they’re singing—and to express that feeling with technical skill, in a safe and supportive environment of student singers.
Classes with Joe
Spontaneous Vocal Improvisation
How do you find greater freedom in music making? How can you jam confidently with folks you’ve never met, and/or say something different every time you take a solo? This class is about allowing immediate response to a situation over feeling the need to have familiarity with the material. Not an “ability based” approach, the session will help deepen your connection to spontaneity and flow through organized sound.
Joe teaches musical improvisation more from a theater model rather than the requisite model of jazz. He connects improvisation to what you already do and moves you forward from there. We’ll focus on ways to think differently about – and respond differently to – sound. Joe demonstrates the connection between spoken-word language and the language of music. Explore the value of being empty-handed, making mistakes, sending/receiving and the value of losing control. The class will stretch you and may well change some of your perceptions of what music is. Remember you can’t win if you don’t enter and you must be present to win!
Feelin’ The Blues
The blues are truly a foundation and inspiration for most traditional and contemporary vernacular American music. We’ll listen to some historical references from early recordings to the present. We’ll sing & feel basic forms (the 8, 12 and 16 bar). We’ll feel the grooves (from ballads to stomps, rumbas to shuffles, hand jive to swing). We’ll reference the melodic guidepost of the human voice, bending long and short tones and learn some tunes/songs that reflect them. We’ll also tackle how to translate the “feel” of the grease, the groan and the growl of the blues to your voice, and importantly, we’ll address taking your time sayin’ a bunch (without singin’ a bunch) of notes. Singin’ the blues suggests the “technique” of clarity over correctness – of intuition, release and expression of your personal emotion. Surrender to the feeling and you’ll do it!