** Welcome Back! Below is our current class schedule since our reopening. Class schedule is subject to change.**
NEW Family Drum Class
New Family Drum Class w/ master drummer, Nana Yaw Asiedu
1PM – 2PM
$10 per participant (drum included)
A djembe or jembe is a rope-tuned skin-covered goblet drum played with bare hands, originally from West Africa. According to the Bambara people in Mali, the name of the djembe comes from the saying “Anke djé, anke bé” which translates to “everyone gather together in peace” and defines the drum’s purpose. In the Bambara language, “djé” is the verb for “gather” and “bé” translates as “peace.”
Djembe players use three basic sounds: bass, tone, and slap, which have low, medium, and high pitch, respectively. These sounds are achieved by varying the striking technique and position.
The bass sound is produced by striking the drum with the palm and flat fingers near the center of the skin. Tone and slap are produced by striking the drum closer to the edge; the contact area of the fingers determines whether the sound is a tone or a slap. For a tone, most of the area of the fingers and the edge of the palm contact the skin whereas, for a slap, the contact area is limited to the edge of the palm and the fingertips. The basic sounds are played “open”, meaning that the hands rebound immediately after a strike, so the contact time with the skin is as short as possible.
West African Dance Class
West African Dance led by Master Dancer, Makida Anderson
High energy, poly-rhythmic dances, whole body articulation. Great workout, live drumming.
3:00 – 5:00PM
African dance refers mainly to the dance of Sub-Saharan Africa, and more appropriately African dances because of the many cultural differences in musical and movement styles. These dances must be viewed in close connection with Sub-Saharan African music traditions and Bantu cultivation of rhythm. African dance utilizes the concept of as well as total body articulation.
West African dance is an essential component of West African culture. Over time, traditional dances incorporated new moves, rhythms and ideas. Through the slave trade, and through national production of traditional dance forms, West African dance has found its way around the globe. West African Dance has influenced many popular American dance forms, such as hip-hop, salsa and jazz dance. Traditional dances are still practiced by many people today.
Dance has always played a very important role in the lives of West Africans. Throughout history, West Africans performed dances to celebrate a birth, harvest or death. Communities relied on dance to ward off evil spirits, to ask the gods for prosperity, or to resolve conflict. Dance continues to serve those functions.
Dumbek Drumming taught by Frank Lazzaro
6:00 PM – 7:00 PM
Frank has taught middle-eastern drumming for over 10 years, and has released an instructional CD. He is also the drummer for Middle-Earth Ensemble and performs regularly for belly dance shows. He has most recently developed a performance group made up of his dumbek drum students, called “Cairo Beats”.
Class Fee: $15
The goblet drum (also chalice drum, tarabuka, tarabaki, darbuka, derbake, debuka, doumbek, dumbec, dumbeg, dumbelek, tablah, toumperleki or zerbaghali, Arabic: دربوكة / ALA-LC: darbūkah) is a single head membranophone with a goblet shaped body used mostly in the Middle East, North Africa, South Asia, and Eastern Europe. The African djembe-wassolou is also a goblet membranophone.
The goblet drum may be played while held under one arm (usually the non-dominant arm) or by placing it sideways upon the lap (with the head towards the player’s knees) while seated. Some drums are also made with strap mounts to the drum may be slung over the shoulder, to facilitate playing while standing or dancing. It produces a resonant, low-sustain sound while played lightly with the fingertips and palm. Some players move their fists in and out of the bell to alter the tone. There are a variety of rhythms (see dumbek rhythms) that form the basis of the folkloric and modern music and dance styles of the Middle East.
San Diego Taiko Practice
Performance Group Practice for members of San Diego Taiko
Taiko (太鼓) are a broad range of Japanese percussion instruments. In Japanese, the term refers to any kind of drum, but outside Japan, it is used to refer to any of the various Japanese drums called wadaiko (和太鼓 “Japanese drums”). The process of constructing taiko varies between manufacturers, and preparation of both the drum body and skin can take several years depending on method.
The origin of the instruments is unclear, though there have been many suggestions. Historical accounts, of which the earliest date from 588 CE, note that young Japanese men traveled to Korea to study the kakko, a drum that originated in South China. This study and appropriation of Chinese instruments may have influenced the emergence of taiko. Certain court music styles, especially gigaku and gagaku, arrived in Japan through both Korea and China. In both traditions, dancers were accompanied by several instruments that included drums similar to taiko.
An important part of kata in taiko is keeping the body stabilized while performing, and can be accomplished by keeping a wide, low stance with the legs, with the left knee bent over the toes and keeping the right leg straight. It is important that the hips face the drum and the shoulders are relaxed.
Some groups in Japan, particularly those active in Tokyo, also emphasize the importance of the lively and spirited iki aesthetic.
The sticks for playing taiko are called bachi, and are made in various sizes and from different kinds of wood such as white oak, bamboo, and Japanese magnolia. Bachi are also held in a number of different styles. In kumi-daiko, it is common for a player to hold their sticks in a relaxed manner between the V-shape of the index finger and thumb, which points to the player.
Emei Qigong Practice
Wuji Gong Practice led by Master Wendy (every other Saturday)
10:00 AM -11:00 AM
Increase your health and energy. Master Wendy has been studying natural medicine and natural healing techniques since the late 1980’s, and studying meditation and Eastern energetic arts since 1994. She started practicing Qigong while in acupuncture school in 1996. Master Wendy leads a weekly Wuji Gong practice group in Balboa Park, and periodically teaches Qigong classes and seminars.
Free! Promotes health, balance, and spiritual development. WorldBeat Center Lawn
Qigong is a holistic system of coordinated body posture and movement, breathing, and meditation used in the belief that it promotes health, spirituality, and martial arts training. With roots in Chinese medicine, philosophy, and martial arts, qigong is traditionally viewed as a practice to cultivate and balance qi (chi), translated as “life energy”.
With roots in ancient Chinese culture dating back more than 4,000 years, a wide variety of qigong forms have developed within different segments of Chinese society: in traditional Chinese medicine for preventive and curative functions.
There are numerous qigong forms. 75 ancient forms that can be found in ancient literature and also 56 common or contemporary forms have been described in a qigong compendium. The list is by no means exhaustive. Many contemporary forms were developed by people who had recovered from their illness after qigong practice.