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B: Beginner //  I: Intermediate //  A: Advanced

Danny Casavant

Blues, Soul and R&B for the Acoustic Guitar (I):
A real boundary jumper, this course will introduce ideas and techniques usually associated with the electric guitar. Tunes and concepts from artists such as Curtis Mayfield, T-Bone Walker and BB King will open up new creative possibilities and breathe new life into your soloing and rhythm guitar playing.

Practical Music Theory for Guitarists (I):
This will be a hands-on class where theory will be put to use so that concepts will come alive as music. This practical class is recommended for any guitarist interested in composition or song writing.

Christine Duncan

Vocal Technique:
Christine will share her insights on use of the voice for performance as well as for personal exploration. Utilizing improvisation, interpretation and energetic work, participants will be able to explore their strengths and limitations for full vocal expression. Bring a tune you are working on. Be prepared to dive off the high board!

Vocal Master Class:
A class for those who want to take performing to the next level. Be prepared to perform a song and get some helpful feedback. Tips on stylizing, improvising, poise and authentic connection. There will be an accompanist available, so bring a chart or feel free to play for yourself.

Paul Elliot

Techniques for Swing Fiddle:
Playing jazz violin takes more ‘chops’ than most other kinds of fiddle music. In this class you’ll learn some short easy things to practice that can improve tone, bow control and intonation. We’ll also learn some solos that use different kinds of attacks, bowing and phrasing to help put your new technique to good use.

Learning/Hearing Tunes:
Tools and tricks to help you learn tunes more quickly. We’ll do some ear training and talk about what to listen for and how to hear it. Then we’ll learn some tunes by ear, starting simply and ending up with some jazz standards.

John Hough

Just Pickin’ Along (B-I):
An introduction to finger-picking based on the alternating bass pattern (Travis picking). This provides a great background for vocals and adds a rhythm and texture to the sound. Also explores how this finger style and strumming can complement each other.

Canadian Folk Repertoire (B-I):
Learn techniques to play some classics by Canadian greats such as Gordon Lightfoot and Stan Rogers. Sheet music and tablature provided.

Ray Piper

Brazilian Rhythms (I):
Using fairly simple chord shapes, this course will cover some right hand rhythm patterns for Brazilian music.

Improvisation (I-A):
Improvisation using simplified patterns which work in many styles and keys.

Dale Rasmussen

Intermediate Vocal Harmony:
For those with some experience singing harmony, this class will focus on complex arrangements from traditional gospel, bluegrass and jazz in 3 and 4 parts. Emphasis will be on singing and arranging songs for performance. The class will also work on jazz harmony and some fun ear training.

John Reischman

Mandolin Styles I and II (I-A):
This class will cover various styles including bluegrass, jazz, folk and Latin. We will work on both lead and rhythm.

Andreas Schuld

Licks and Tricks (B-I):
In this class players will learn a multitude of easy but highly effective licks and techniques which can be applied in a variety of playing situations. Handouts and CDs will be available, featuring all licks played in slow and normal speed, as well as backing tracks.

Open Tunings (I-A):
Thanks to the commercial success of guitarist/singer/songwriters such as Shawn Colvin, as well as numerous acoustic guitar-driven pop and rock bands, there has been a re-emergence of open tunings in all styles of music. This class will explore a variety of common and not-so-common open tunings and their applications. CDs and handouts will be available.

Greg Scott

Songwriting 101:
If you’re still new to song writing, this class is for you. How to generate song ideas. Steps for turning a rough idea into a finished song. Rhyme schemes and rhyming techniques. Song form. Beginnings, middles, and endings. Fun writing exercises to get you going.

Songwriting 102:
You¹ve been writing for a while, but now you want to move to the next level. Genre-specific writing. The fine points of word choice. ‘True rhymes’. Hooks. Advanced chord progressions. Melodies that are ‘interesting’ but also singable. Collaboration techniques. Leave your ego at home for this class: we’ll write some songs, tear them apart, and put them together again!

Russell Shumsky

Drumming Rhythms and Technique (B):
This hand-drumming workshop will explore basic playing technique for the Cuban conga drum and West African djembe. Participants will learn traditional rhythms from Cuba and Africa ; the idea is to have fun and learn something new. Bring your own drum (some drums provided).

Sue Thompson

Rhythm Slaves Unite!:
At jam sessions do you always play the chords while someone else plays melody? Have you wanted to try playing some solos of your own, but felt shy or uncertain about how to begin? Join us as we break the bonds of rhythm slavery and start playing some leads. Prerequisites: rhythm guitar experience and willingness to take chances.

Secrets of Harmony Singing Revealed:
If you can sing a part someone else teaches you, but can¹t figure out the part yourself, this class will solve the mystery of how it¹s done. You¹ll be inventing simple harmony parts by the end of the class.

Joe Vinikow (for Nancy Thorwardson)

Western Swing Repertoire (B-I):
Fill your musical saddlebags with warm and wonderful western swing tunes, replete with images of the out-of-doors, evenings around the campfire, the desert breeze, the prairie moon, and the wide open spaces. We will cover treasured favourites from the Hollywood cowboy days, learn classic dance tunes from the western swing big band era, and explore some of the western music being written today.

Intro to Swing Style Rhythm Guitar (I):
Expand your playing with this lively guitar style that sounds great with standard and western swing music. Learn swing chord forms and strum patterns, explore progressions and substitutions, and grow familiar with reading and playing from chord charts. Become a strong yet subtle rhythm guitar player, and you will be welcome in any jam session!