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World music

World music encompasses many different styles from around the world. It is believed that ethnomusicologist Robert E. Brown coined the term world music in late 1960s. He invited many visiting performers from Asia and Africa to Weseleyan Uniersity in Connecticut to enhance the process of learning through a world music series. World Music became popular term in the music industry to describe any kind of non-western music.

Chorus is proud to bring authentic world traditions from the Indian subcontinent, West Africa and Australia to our students, amongst other cultures. The following section describes some of our world music programs.


Tabla

TablaThe Tabla is a pair of drums that originated in Northern India. Tabla is a principal percussion instrument of the Hindustani (North Indian) classical music, playing key role in folk music, devotional music and film music. A pair of tabla consists of a treble drum which is called tabla or dayan (meaning right) and a bass drum called bayan (meaning left). The body of dayan is made of wood, and the body of bayan is made of metal. The black spot on skin is known as "Siyahi" and is made of a mixture of glue, charcoal, and iron fillings.

Tabla has a very sophisticated language system of phonetic syllables (called bols) describing each stroke. These words are combined together in Taal or rhythmic pattern of any composition. Taal forms pre-composed patterns or improvisation.

Tabla classes at the Chorus Music Academy are taught in the traditional style; to develop an understanding of tabla stroke technique, reading\recital, and rhythmic theory. We provide private and group tabla lessons for students of all ages and levels, from beginner to advanced.


Didgeridoo

DidgeridooThe didgeridoo is a large wind instrument developed by the indigenous people of Arnhem Land, Northern Territory, Australia. Its exact date of origin is unknown, but researchers suggest that it may be up to 40,000 years old! The word didgeridoo is likely an onomatopoeic name given to the instrument by Westerners. Traditionally, the instrument goes by several names, with yidaki being a more commonly known term, used by the Yolngu people of north-east Arnhem Land. Didgeridoos were originally created from eucalyptus tree trunks, hollowed from the inside out by termites. However, today, didgeridoos can be made out of virtually any material that can form a hollow tube, including glass, metals and plastics. The instrument is played by vibrating your lips through the top end to create its characteristic drone. A versatile instrument that is a lot of fun to play, the didgeridoo can enable the practitioner to learn cirtular breathing. Some scientists and doctors are taking interest in this instrument to determine if it can help with sleep apnea. For more information, see this episode from The Doctors on Youtube.

At Chorus, we are very excited to offer didgeridoo lessons, workshops and collaborative opportunities! Learn in a private or group setting based on your interest, age and ability. Beginner students will learn fundamental didgeridoo playing techniques, including warm up, making the drone, adding vocalizations and circular breathing, and applying the instruments to other musical styles. Furthermore, our didgeridoo instructor Neel Dani will introduce students to techniques he has been developing for the instrument; didgeridoo beat boxing and didgeri-dubstep.


Jembe Drum Circles/Workshops

Jembe Drum Circles/WorkshopsThe jembe is a rope-turned and skin covered goblet drum that is played with bare hands. According to Bamana or Mandé people of Mali in West Africa, the name of Jembe comes from the saying, "Anke djé, anke bé" which translates to "everyone gather together in peace" and defines the drum's purpose. ChorusMusic's jembe drumming circles provide an opportunity for people to come together, discover new rhythms while sharing their own, and create a fun, energetic and immersive rhythmic force. The workshops will introduce the jembe as well as the culture that the drums come from. Music is directly linked to culture throughout Africa, and the workshops will also introduce students to West African Mande drumming culture, teaching them about the importance the jembe plays in society as well as traditional rhythmic patterns.