Bob Becker has a busy travel, teaching and performing schedule. If you’ve seen him play mallets you know he’s a virtuoso. But his expertise extends beyond mallets. Two of Bob’s workshops explore West African Drumming and North Indian drumming.
Posts By: Peggy Feltmate
I promised to look at Creative Programming Ideas from time to time, and here is an event that had some great ones: the Talking Drum Symposium that took place in October in Toronto and Mississaugua. Talking Drums are fascinating as even a quick skim of the current Wikipedia entry will show.
The holidays are over, school’s back in session, and Nexus is performing at the University of Toronto, so I’ve been thinking about the ensemble’s educational work. It’s no surprise that the first comments that came in on our new website were from students. NEXUS’ compositions are performed in schools all over the world, the “NEXUS… Read more »
In a couple of weeks NEXUS is performing at the University of Toronto. As “Ensemble in Residence”, NEXUS has had a long and fruitful relationship with the University, and a great many percussion students come to U of T specifically for the opportunity to study with NEXUS members. Russell Hartenberger is the Dean of the… Read more »
NEXUS has a concert coming up that is taking them back to their “Improv” roots. Improvisation. It always has that “edge”. It’s unpredictable. Exciting. Unexpected. Sometimes improbable! We all know about history-making drum solos, guitar licks, jazz sessions, and even comedy sketches on shows like “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” All based on improvisation. There… Read more »
John Wyre described Russell Hartenberger‘s musicality as “so solid you can always hang your hat on it.” It’s fitting, then, that Russell offers a workshop called “Rhythm and Time in Music”. Useful to non-percussionists and percussionists alike, Russell takes a historical look at Western music rhythms, then explores non-Western cultures to compare them. Intriguingly, he… Read more »
It’s December and every shop surrounds us with heavenly voices. Concerts abound featuring beautiful choral music. It surprises people to hear that NEXUS has some very interesting choral material in their repertoire. Past concerts have seen NEXUS sharing the stage with the Amadeus Choir, the Elora Festival Singers, the MacMillan Singers, and the Toronto Children’s… Read more »
I want to tell you about Bill Cahn‘s workshop entitled “Creative Music-Making.” Bill has given it a subtitle – “Four Simple Steps to Cultivating the Inner Musician” – and it is designed for any age, professional and amateur alike, experienced or “never tried it”. Completely interactive, the workshop provides an opportunity to TRY THINGS –… Read more »
The holidays are upon us! In every corner of the globe there are celebrations – I’ll give you a list of a “baker’s dozen” at the end of this post. It has set me to thinking about the FAMILY and POPS repertoire in the NEXUS programme collection. “An African Celebration” is a joyous programme with… Read more »
Bob Becker’s blog mentions George Hamilton Greene‘s grave in Woodstock’s Artists’ Cemetery. (For a nice winter view of this peaceful place, click here) . I hadn’t known about the Cemetery, but Fodor’s makes it sound downright percussive: “Many of the stones, in keeping with the wishes of their buried subjects, tell artfully rendered stories that… Read more »
I admit I’m a “newbie” when it comes to John Cage. I know of the man, of course, but had never really heard his work. I knew about the 4 minutes and 33 seconds of silence; – I certainly hadn’t heard that! And I’d seen any number of send-ups of “prepared pianos” (a Cage innovation)…. Read more »
NEXUS member Robin Engelman has just returned from Sweden and Finland where he was the guest of each country’s army! A bit unusual, you might think, but it’s due to Robin’s long-held fascination with military drumming, the historic rope tensioned field drums, and fife and drum music. He’s become an expert in the field (pun… Read more »
If you have booked NEXUS, then you know Ray Dillard, the NEXUS Business Manager. He’s the man we turn to when we need to know if a gig can work logistically. He can tell us how many cases each instrument set-up takes, what we need in terms of light and sound, how many hours we… Read more »
Adams Musical Instruments and Pearl Drums are two of our Sponsors. They help us out in a whole lot of ways and they can help you out too. Did you know that Pearl/Adams will help you financially if you wish to present a NEXUS educational event such as a clinic, workshop, or master-class?
Today I want to tell you about Garry Kvistad’s collection of strange instruments and his Science of Sound workshop. Garry is the “newbie” with NEXUS. He joined NEXUS in 2002 when founding member John Wyre retired, so he’s been a Nexonian for a mere 6 years compared to NEXUS’ thirty-seven!