Drum Line, Circle Up: there is a session right just for you
To paraphrase Kool Moe Dee, self knowledge is king. Clearly, no information is as important as knowing who you are . Cultural understanding teaches that the drum (heartbeat) is at the core of any culture. So we’re working to learn more about ourselves through the practice of Mande drumming in community circle.
Family is the matrix of Afrikan social structure, and family isn’t nuclear but extended. From this extension comes a strength of identity that informs us who we are in relation, and what our responsibilities are to family and community. We extrapolate this social order to the drum circle. We position ourselves in a circle so that each individual has a clear view of those with whom she sits the circle. There is both a security and an accountability in this formation that is liberating – once the individual is able to relax and let go of their critical self judgement.
Through our decades of work with young people and adults, they have taught us how to facilitate their learning. Effective instruction is culture specific and individual, yet, at its core, is the collective. While we are teaching the cultural music tradition of another people, we are learning through the lens of American cultural perception. The facilitator/learner assumes the responsibility for communicating clearly (though not necessarily verbally). They must manipulate and witness the experience of the moment to the benefit of the student. It is the facilitators responsibility to see and hear each students comfort level and effect ways of assisting them to integrate their momentary experience. The result is a heightened awareness and understanding that identity counts.
TRIAAC will offer Identity Counts drumming for learners at all levels beginning in January, from pre-school to adults of all ages. Why? We have experienced the beneficial effects of community drumming first-hand, and witnessed its impact on the youth and adults with whom we have worked. The traditional Afrikan drumming practice that’s happening at TRIAAC is a community building experience. Drumming within a circle of learners strengthens self-confidence, opens doors to becoming a better listener, and facilitates left-right brain synchronization. The beneficial effects of drumming, rhythm and sound have been validated by health care professionals around the world as stress reducing and wonderfully revitalizing for mind, body and soul.
In our own practice we have found that Mande drumming:
- Promotes active listening
- Develops team spirit and ensemble skills
- Builds self-confidence
- Improves tolerance and respect
- Fosters heightened feelings of well-being
- Increases physical strength through aerobic exercise
- It improves musical ability, timing and hand-ear coordination
- Enhances cultural awareness
Come drum with us on Wednesday evening, from 6:00 to 7:30PM. Not to worry if you don’t have a drum, we have authentic hand-carved Guinean jenbes that you can use. We’re located at the corner of Brackenridge and Clay streets, In Fort Wayne, IN.
Hit the “Identity” button to learn more.