African Hand Drumming

 

African Hand Drumming workshops are suitable for people of all ages – from nursery and reception children, infants/juniors, teenagers, young adults to senior citizens.  African drumming is particularly beneficial for those with special needs as the drums are tactile to play and very responsive.

 

All workshops are ‘hands-on’ and everyone is guaranteed to have a drum or percussion instrument to play with.  Each instrument used is hand-made and authentic having been made and imported from Ghana.

 

A school workshop consists of a brief introduction during which each drum and percussion instrument "African Ghanaian Dunumba - Unshaved Cow Skin, 16" diameter x 24" height"is described and demonstrated.  There then follows a number of activities exploring the different sounds and rhythms of the drums using techniques such as rumbles, call and response, cyclic patterns and polyrhythms. 

 

Players are encouraged to swap instruments and experiment with their own rhythms within the musical framework of the group.

 

A typical timetable within a primary school environment for classes of up to 35 pupils would be:

St Peter's pupils beat out the rhythm

 

 

Reception

9:00 – 9:30

Year 1

9:30 – 10:00

Yr 1/Yr2

10:00 – 10:30

 

 

BREAK

 

 

 

Year 2

10:45 – 11:15

Year 3

11:15 – 11:45

 

 

LUNCH

 

 

 

Year 4

1:20 – 2:00

Year 5

2:00 – 2:40

Year 6

2:40 – 3:20

 

NB. This assumes the workshops take place in the dining hall which has to be cleared for lunch.  A short introduction during assembly and/or a performance at the end of the day can also be included if required.

 

Half day workshops can be arranged for small schools or for specific classes.  Alternatively, for youth clubs and community groups, hour-long sessions can be arranged to accommodate solo and improvisation playing.

 

The main drums used in an African drumming workshop are djembes and djun-djuns.  These are augmented with African percussion instruments such as shekeres, pod shakers, calabash shakers, rakatak, apitua and gankogui.

 

Please click here for an African Drum factsheet.