• by


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

Andreas Schuld (for Erin Corday)

Percussive Techniques for Guitar (B-I):
We’ll focus on right-hand technique to learn how polyrhythms, harmonics, hammer-ons, pull-offs, string stops and strums can help you evoke samba, bass montuno, mbira and kalimba. Includes rhythmic principles, vocal percussion and muting effects.

Open-minded Tunings (B-I):
How do you turn standard chord progressions into stunning guitar arrangements? We’ll learn specific tunings and focus on arrangement concepts (chord voicing, bass movement, dynamics, etc.), intuitive approaches and practical applications.

Patricia Dalquist

Vocal Technique:
Drawing from an array of exercises, you’ll learn an holistic approach to voice production. We’ll investigate the whole body as your instrument, including how attitude can affect your voice. We’ll relax the body, work the voice, then we’ll sing!

Gospel Singing:
We will warm up our voices, getting to the most open sound. After listening to different examples of improvisation, you’ll learn to access your own creative gospel expression. There’ll be answer and harmony work and we’ll finish the class with a joyful noise!

Steve Dawson

Slide Guitar (B-I):
This course will be an overview of some right and left hand techniques involved in playing slide.We’ll learn two standard slide tunings and several blues standards that use them. We’ll also look at basic improvisation and some solo slide in the Delta blues vein.

Toolbox of Cunning Guitar Tips (B-I):
For those interested in learning more about rhythm, improvising and building a repertoire of sneaky licks that will impress friends and foes alike. We will cover styles such as blues, bluegrass, swing and more.

Ruthie Dornfield

Scandinavian Fiddle Smorgasbord (I):
A sampler of tunes from the great fiddling traditions of Denmark, Sweden and Finland. Both lead and harmony parts will be taught by ear with attention to style. We’ll also listen to recordings of some of the great players from these countries.

Quebecois Fiddling:
Reels, jigs and waltzes from French Canada will be taught by ear. Bowing, tone, ornamentation and rhythmic emphasis distinctive to Quebec music will be covered, as well as a discussion of influential players.

Colleen Eccleston

Songwriting (B):
When they work, songs are greater than the sum of their parts. We’ll see how these parts work and build towards the final effect, and also examine the creative idea and how our choices affect its expression. Learn to think out of the box and capture your ideas in song.

Developing a Songwriting Toolkit (I):
Which comes first, the rhythm or the melody, the lyrics or the rhyme scheme? We’ll focus on the musicality, rhythm and power of language, and how these affect melody, guitar parts, singing and arrangement. If you’re stuck, we’ll give some new vantage points from which to approach your songs.

Lauri Lyster

Beginner Percussion:
We’ll deal with the basics of rhythmic work – keeping good time, subdivisions, syncopation, etc. We’ll meet a variety of percussion instruments, working on correct technique, idiomatic patterns and tasteful accompaniment. We’ll also touch upon hand drumming and have fun playing grooves in an ensemble. Bring percussion instruments if you have them.

Intermediate Percussion:
We’ll build upon and strengthen your rhythmic knowledge, working with polyrhythms and hand vs. hand independence. A variety of small percussion instruments will be introduced, as well as hand and stick drums, and after we’ve covered the basics of these instruments, including technique and idiomatic patterns, we’ll play together. Bring percussion instruments if you have them.

John Miller

Chord Voicing Options (I-A):
We’ll provide you with the conceptual tools you’ll need to accompany a song using different chord voicings up and down the neck. Working within the context of jazz and bossa standards, we’ll see how to derive more complex chords from the very first chord shapes you learned on the guitar.

Learning to Read Music (B):
Being able to read music opens up an entire world of repertoire. We’ll provide you with a knowledge of the symbols and system that will enable you, with practice, to sight sing or play unfamiliar melodies from written notation.

Gary Stevenson

Flatpicking (B and I):
Develop the basics of lead flatpicking, including licks, passages and melodies, using traditional fiddle tunes or other standards. Beginner level will focus on pick direction, finger position and timing. Intermediate level will work on left and right hand techniques such as hammer and cross-picking to move beyond basic melodies, and will also introduce improvisation.

Sue Thompson

Rhythm Slaves Revolt (I):
At jam sessions do you always play chords while someone else plays melody? Have you wanted to try playing some solos of your own, but felt shy or uncertain how to begin? Join us as we break the bonds of rhythm slavery and start playing some leads. You’ll need solid rhythm guitar experience and a willingness to take chances.

From Duets to Doo-Wop:
A repertoire class for those who want to have fun singing harmony. We’ll do a variety of song styles from the Bahamas to the Beatles, the Delmore Brothers to the Del-Vikings. Prerequisite: ability to stay on your part (reasonably well) while others are singing something else.

Barry Truter

Fingerpicking Patterns (B-I):
This course is rich in tips and techniques for fingerstyle accompaniment. We’ll use well-known songs to explore a variety of picking patterns to add texture and colour to your arrangements.

Ragtime Blues (B-I):
The syncopation of ragtime meets the soul of the blues! Through the music of Bessie Smith, Reverend Gary Davis and others we’ll explore the basics of this dynamic musical style.


Accompaniment (B and I):
Accompaniment: concomitant, complement, added for embellishment, for completeness. We’ll learn to create parallel motion to a melody, let the guitar be the vehicle for the motion, and thus accompany the voice adequately. Hammering away will get you there but accompanying using turnarounds, passing chords and other techniques is a courteous, artful route.

Randy Vic (accompanist Dave Marshall)

Celtic Guitar Back-up (B-I):
Explore the fundamentals of effective Celtic backup guitar and how to make yourself welcome at any session.

Celtic Guitar Backup (I-A):
Create more interesting backup; discover drop-D and DADGAD tunings, and apply chord progressions and substitutions.