Piano student and teacher

Workshop Weeks

Spring Workshop Week is here!

Tuesday, March 16 – Saturday, March 20, 2021

Scroll down to view all of our Spring 2021 workshops! Click the dropdown arrow to read a description of each workshop and see the details of when and where it meets. All spring workshops are free and will be presented online.

Want to spread the word or share what you’ve learned? Use the hashtag #workshopweekatpowers

Once you’ve found a workshop you’re interested in…

Sign up for a workshop here!

 

What are people saying about Workshop Week?

“I liked the community and the level of professionalism.”

“The teachers are so sweet, professional and touching. You can feel their love in music.”

“It was a great chance to break out from routine and try something different.”

“THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU for opening up the workshops to the public. I appreciate the numerous workshops that were made available to adult learners.”

“It was fun and appropriate for both of my children (ages 5 and 7). It got them excited about new instruments and kinds of music.”

 

What is Workshop Week?

Twice each year, we’ll throw open the doors to Powers (physical and virtual!) so YOU can experience the joy of music for yourself!

Powers is thrilled to offer “Workshop Weeks” for our community and our students – two weeks of fun and interactive classes taught by local and regional teaching artists. These weeks encourage creativity within our faculty, bring accessible music and arts programs right to you, and provide a fun way to learn about music together.

Who can attend a workshop during Workshop Weeks?

Anyone! We’ll have a variety of hand-chosen workshop topics for all age groups, including adults, seniors, young children, K-8 and high school students, and parents. Everyone from novices to aspiring professionals will find something they like. Don’t see anything interesting in the schedule? Let us know what suggestions you have!

What does it cost?

This year, all workshops are 100% free for the general public and currently registered Powers students! We hope that the free/low cost will allow you to sign up for as many workshops as you like!

Can I bring a friend?

Absolutely! In fact, we encourage your friends and family to also sign up for one or more workshops so you can share your experience together AND learn about things that interest you.

 

Early Childhood & Younger Kids

Music Pups® Workshop

Tuesday, March 16, 6:00 – 6:30 pm
Instructor: Jennifer Choe
Best for: Newborn – age 3 and a parent/caregiver
Please have ready: Just yourselves! And maybe a spoon and a pot or bucket to bang on.

Children ages 0-3 and their grown-ups can join us for this free demo of activities from the Music Pups® class (from TMC at Home®)! You’ll enjoy a half hour of songs and other activities to help get out that last bit of energy and begin to relax at the end of the day.
Click here to learn more about Music Pups®.

Music Pups® Open Class

Friday, March 19, 9:30 – 10:15 am
Instructor: Jennifer Choe
Best for: Newborn – age 3 and a parent/caregiver
Please have ready: Just yourselves! And maybe a spoon and a pot or bucket to bang on.

Children ages 0-4 and their grown-ups can join us for a free open session of the Music Pups® class (from TMC at Home®)! You’ll enjoy a 45 minutes of singing, dancing, and instrument play. Hear the different musical styles we incorporate into each class, and how the pitch and rhythm skills we work on provide the perfect foundation for your child’s musical future.
Click here to learn more about Music Pups®.

Lunar’s New Year: Story & Music

Thursday, March 18, 11:00 am
Instructor: Ming-Hui Lin
Best for: All young children
Please have ready: kid-friendly scissors and paper

All young children are welcome to listen and participate! We’ll read aloud the book “”Maisy’s Chinese New Year,”” do a fun craft, and learn about the cello and a new culture.

Listen, Move, Sing!

Saturday, March 20, 9:00 – 9:45 am
Instructor: Elizabeth Chladil
Best for: Elementary students
Please have ready: Paper and something to write with. As this is a movement-based class, participants should be in a space with room to move several steps in each direction and be ready to participate with their video on.

Meet new animal friends and learn a new song through listening and movement games! In this 45-minute online workshop, participants ages 6-8 will use their bodies and voices to explore, practice, and identify notes values of different lengths.

Piano

Harmonization

Thursday, March 18, 6:00 – 7:00 pm
Instructor: Jei Yern Ryu
Best for: Elementary students
Please have ready: piano or keyboard

Add chords or notes to a simply melody to explore new harmonies!

Agogics and Phrasing in the Romantic Era

Friday, March 19, 6:00 – 7:30 pm
Instructor: Anna Soukiassian
Best for: Middle school, high school, adults
Please have ready: piano or keyboard and a piece of music from the Romantic period (8-10 minutes max)

Working on a piece from the Romantic period? Perform your piece for instructor Anna Soukiassian and she will help you listen to your playing, explore ways to enhance the phrasing of some passages, and apply new ideas.

Learning How To Improvise from the Melody

Saturday, March 20, 10:15 – 11:15 am
Instructor: Jose Soto
Best for: Middle school, high school, adults
Please have ready: a keyboard if you have one, but not necessary!

Learn how to find improvisation tools from the melody in order to expand our artistic possibilities!

Piano Workshop: What’s in a Phrase? Part 1

Saturday, March 20, 4:30 – 6:00 pm
Instructor: Natacha Rist
Best for: Elementary, middle school, high school, adults
Please have ready: Piano or keyboard, seat boosters, feet supported, a polished piece or work in progress to play (it’s okay play a selection, use the score, or play under-tempo), print-outs of all participants’ pieces (emailed ahead of time)

Bring a piece to play and learn all about phrases, the phrase structure of your piece and how it can help your practicing. Learn from performing your own piece and listening to others. We’ll also learn some fun facts about J.S. Bach for his birthday on March 31, and discuss why the study of his music is so important for many instruments.

Strings

Improv and Creativity GAmes

Wednesday, March 17, 4:00 – 5:00 pm
Instructor: Ellery Klein
Best for: Elementary, middle school, high school, adults. This workshop is geared for strings players, though any melody instrument is welcome to watch and try to play along.
Please have ready:  Your instrument. A speaker or earphones might also be useful for hearing the track while you are playing.

Come play some fun improv games and exercises to explore various aspects of improvisation! Take all those scales you’ve been practicing so hard, and let’s see what they can do when you set them free!

INternalizing Scale Patterns

Wednesday, March 17, 7:00 – 8:00 pm
Instructor: Ellery Klein
Best for: Middle school, high school, adults. This workshop is geared towards violin/fiddle players, but is open to cello and viola players who would feel comfortable translating the instructions to their own instrument.
Please have ready: Your instrument, headphones or speaker.

Practicing and learning from scale books is valuable, but we’ll explore a new way of practicing scales – off the book – which will really help you to internalize those scale patterns and intervals in a different way. This is a vital step if you want to improvise in jazz, fiddle, or rock bands, or feel more fluid on your instrument “off the page.”

Learn an Irish Jig

Friday, March 19, 4:45 – 5:30 pm
Instructor: Ellery Klein
Best for: Elementary, middle school, high school, adults. This workshop is geared towards violinists and string players but other melody instruments are welcome to join as well.
Please have ready: Your instrument.

We’ll learn a common Irish jig by ear, and explore the rhythm and ornamentation that give the repertoire its style.

How to Practice For Beginning String Players

Friday, March 19, 6:00 – 7:00 pm
Instructor: Jenny Shallenberger
Best for: Elementary, middle school
Please have ready: paper and something to write with

Having variety in how you practice makes you a better player and a more efficient practicer. Learn how to get started and warmed up when practicing, strategies for using your practice time, and how to be your own best teacher!

Fiddle & Violin Groove Out Time

Saturday, March 20, 12:45 – 1:30 pm
Instructor: Ellery Klein
Best for: Middle school, high school, adults. This workshop is geared for strings players, though any melody instrument is welcome to watch and try to play along.
Please have ready: Your instrument. A speaker or earphones might also be useful for hearing the track while we are playing together.

Are you feeling burned out by the pandemic? Zoom got you down? Come and just play your instrument in an easy, accessible way that gets you trying out scales, ear training, rhythms and grooves, improvisation, and leave feeling good about life, your instrument, and you!

Plucked Strings, Traditional, World

Meet the Mountain Dulcimer

Tuesday, March 16, 7:15 – 8:15 pm
Instructor: Lucy Joan Sollogub
Best for: Elementary, middle school, high school, adults
Please have ready: dulcimer (if you do not have one, feel free to come and watch!), packet emailed to you after sign-up

Hear about the interesting history of the mountain dulcimer and learn the basics of playing the instrument. We will experiment with the instruments, play some scales, simple RH brushing technique, LH fretting technique, and play some simple folk tunes.

World Music Series: The Basic Makams – Ussak

Wednesday, March 17, 7:15 – 8:45 pm
Instructor: Tev Stevig
Best for: High school, adults. Attendees need not be performers, though instrumentalists and vocalists are encouraged to take part in call and response demonstrations. Attendees should have a general understanding of basic western musical concepts such as scales, chords, and rhythms.
Please have ready: Voice or Instrument capable of non-tempered intervals (not a piano or guitar, for example). Other learning materials will be provided online.

The World Music Workshop Series is intended to present concepts from various music traditions from around the globe to curious students who wish to have a more rich understanding of how the many peoples of the world think about and perform music.

Building on what we learned in the workshop on Makam Rast this fall, in this workshop, we will spend the entire meeting exploring just one makam: Ussak. Ussak can be used as a basis for understanding many other makams and is present in Persian, Greek, Amenian, Turkish, Arab, and Central Asian music. Through discussion, demonstration, and analyzing musical examples from existing repertoire we will become familiar with this makam. Attendees will also learn characteristic phrases from the repertoire that they can use in their own improvisations, as well as a tune for performance.

Strummin’ the Uke: Fun Ways to Build Rhythm Ideas on the Ukulele

Thursday, March 18, 6:00 – 7:00 pm
Instructor: Tev Stevig
Best for: Elementary, middle school, high school, adults. The workshop is intended for students who have some basic experience with the ukulele or other plucked string instrument. Attendees should already know some basic open chords and know a few simple tunes on their own.
Please have ready: Ukulele

The ukulele is a very accessible and affordable instrument which one can use to perform a surprisingly wide variety of music. Many of the techniques used on the ukulele come from fingerstyle guitar performance, but most of those techniques are much easier on the ukulele due to it’s smaller size and more comfortable string tension. A ukulele can sound great in the hands of a beginner without much musical experience as well as a professional who performs with a wider variety of techniques. In addition, the ukulele is very easy to take with you when you travel, making it the perfect instrument to learn for a lifetime of musical enjoyment.

Building on what we learned in the “Meet the Ukulele” workshop this fall, in this workshop we will focus on our right hand technique. In particular we will begin to develop rhythm strumming patterns that we can apply to almost any tune we already know or new tunes we learn going forward. Through presentation and discussion, we will learn how to swing on the uke and begin working on the following techniques: Triple Strokes, Drop Thumb, and Fingerstyle. These techniques will be presented first in simple, basic exercises and then applied to a familiar tune.

Clawhammer Style on Banjo, Ukulele, and Guitar

Thursday, March 18, 7:15 – 8:45 pm
Instructor: Tev Stevig
Best for: Middle school, high school, adults. No previous clawhammer experience is required, though students should have a basic knowledge of tunings, chords, and basic left hand techniques for banjo, ukulele, or guitar.
Please have ready: 5-string banjo, ukulele, or guitar, and a tuner.

Clawhammer (also known as “frailing”) is a relatively simple technique using only the performer’s right hand thumb and middle fingernail in performance and is a great way to convey chords, melody, and rhythmic drive on plucked string instruments. Originally, clawhammer was used exclusively on the banjo, but it has more recently been developed for guitar and ukulele as well. Since the 60’s and 70’s clawhammer has developed dramatically into a style that is remarkably adaptable to folk music from around the world and can be used as simple accompaniment for fiddle players or for more virtuosic solo performances.

In this workshop, through handouts and discussion, we will learn the basics of the clawhammer technique, including the “bum-ditty” stroke, open chords, and some melodic features. We will learn a simple tune together, utilizing the concepts learned.

Winds, Brass, Percussion

First Steps Towards Improvising in Jazz

Tuesday, March 16, 6:00 – 7:00 pm
Instructor: Mary Cicconetti and Andrew Goodrich
Best for: Middle school, high school, adults. This session is designed for ALL musicians on any instrument. (Students should be able to play the pitches in a one octave chromatic concert Bb scale. All instrumentalists who do not play a C instrument (e.g. saxophone, clarinet etc.) must know how to transpose.)
Please have ready: Your instrument.

Have you ever wanted to learn how to improvise in jazz, but have never had the opportunity? Learning to improvise can be simple and it is fun! It helps to develop your listening skills that you can transfer to any style of music. Any instrument can improvise and play jazz.

We will focus on learning the melody to the Duke Ellington song C Jam Blues. We will also engage in call-and-response activities to help take the first steps towards improvising in the jazz style.

Hand Drumming Basics

Saturday, March 20, 12:45 – 1:45 pm
Instructor: Michael Weinfield-Zell
Best for: Middle school, high school, adults
Please have ready: a hand drum (or something to bang on!)

This is a hands-on workshop where we will discuss common hand drums, some basic techniques, and then use a simple recording app to simulate the drum circle experience.

Voice

Spring Training for Singers

Friday, March 19, 11:00 – 11:45 am
Instructor: Emily Romney
Best for: High school, adults
Please have ready: Just yourself!

Have fun with physical and vocal warmups, vocalizing, articulation games and song singing to help get your voice in shape for the time when we can sing together again!

Viriditas: Sacred Greening of the 11th Century – Exploring the Environmental Movement of Hildegard Von Bingen

Saturday, March 20, 4:30 – 5:30 pm
Instructor: Greta Feeney
Best for: High school, adults
Please have ready: Just yourself!

11th Century Catholic mystic theologian, polymath, composer, poet and natural scientist Hildegard Von Bingen is credited with being the first German natural scientist and the first published composer of sacred chant and polyphony. ‘Viriditas’, or ‘noble greenness’, is a theme she explores widely in her vocal music, which espouses a sacred connection to nature. Explore 5 selections of Hildegard’s lyric poetry in Latin with English translations, to better understand why the Sibyl of the Rhine was thought to possess the gift of prophesy, and how her music and philosophy pertains more than ever to 21st century life. Questions and conversation are welcome!

General / Any Instrument

First Steps Towards Improvising in Jazz

Tuesday, March 16, 6:00 – 7:00 pm
Instructor: Mary Cicconetti and Andrew Goodrich
Best for: Middle school, high school, adults. This session is designed for ALL musicians on any instrument. (Students should be able to play the pitches in a one octave chromatic concert Bb scale. All instrumentalists who do not play a C instrument (e.g. saxophone, clarinet etc.) must know how to transpose.)
Please have ready: Your instrument.

Have you ever wanted to learn how to improvise in jazz, but have never had the opportunity? Learning to improvise can be simple and it is fun! It helps to develop your listening skills that you can transfer to any style of music. Any instrument can improvise and play jazz.

We will focus on learning the melody to the Duke Ellington song C Jam Blues. We will also engage in call-and-response activities to help take the first steps towards improvising in the jazz style.

How Do I Practice? Let’s Have Fun!

Wednesday, March 17, 4:45 – 5:45 pm
Instructor: Kathryn Rosenbach
Best for: Elementary, middle school, high school, adults
Please have ready: your instrument and a piece you’re currently working on

Learn how to keep practicing interesting, stay positive, and have fun! Try out new approaches to practicing by using ideas with the piece you’re currently working on.

Playing with Rubato

Friday, March 19, 4:45 – 5:30 pm
Instructor: Ben Fox
Best for: High school, adults
Please have ready: your instrument and two 1-minute selections (ideally from different movements or pieces)

“Rubato” is generally translated as robbed or stolen time. Since we can’t pause the universe to get that stolen time back, how can we use “rubato?” Learn what types of rubato exist, when to use them, and how to execute them.

Learning How To Improvise from the Melody

Saturday, March 20, 10:15 – 11:15 am
Instructor: Jose Soto
Best for: Middle school, high school, adults
Please have ready: a keyboard if you have one, but not necessary!

Learn how to find improvisation tools from the melody in order to expand our artistic possibilities!

Intro to Recording & Composing an Electronic Track on Garageband

Tuesday, March 16, 4:45 – 5:45 pm
Instructor: Cindy Giron
Best for: Elementary, middle school, high school, adults
Please have ready: the installed GarageBand app (it’s free for both PC and Mac! https://garagebandforpc.org)

Would you like to compose your own tunes, explore electronic music design, and record your own track? Then, this class may be for you!

Digital Music Production 101 will cover the basics in how to use the digital audio workstation GarageBand. We will discuss how to upload your recording into a computer, how to improvise and compose using software instruments, how to edit your track so that it sounds good, and how to export the file so you can listen to it.

Whether you play an instrument, or have always wanted to experiment with digital sounds, the Digital Music Production class will help you brainstorm and develop your ideas!

General / No Instrument? No Problem!

Intro to Music Theory

Tuesday, March 16, 3:30 – 4:15 pm
Instructor:  Rebecca Sacks
Best for: Elementary, middle school, high school, adults
Please have ready: blank manuscript paper and a pencil, printer to print out worksheets

This workshop is an introduction to the virtual Creative Music Theory classes at Powers. You will be introduced to the basic concepts of melodic and rhythmic sight-singing (called “solfège”), as well as melodic and rhythmic dictations. At the end of the workshop, Rebecca will answer any questions about Music Theory lessons and classes.

What is the Classical Period of Music?

Thursday, March 18, 4:45 – 5:45 pm
Instructor: Jenny Shallenberger
Best for: Elementary, middle school, high school, adults
Please have ready: paper and something to write with

We’ll listen to examples and discuss the importance of the time-period referred to as the Classical Period in Music (1750-1839). We’ll learn about important musical forms such as the Concerto, String Quartet and Sonata-Allegro Form, and important composers from this period including Mozart, Haydn and Beethoven.

Spring Training for Singers

Friday, March 19, 11:00 – 11:45 am
Instructor: Emily Romney
Best for: High school, adults
Please have ready: Just yourself!

Have fun with physical and vocal warmups, vocalizing, articulation games and song singing to help get your voice in shape for the time when we can sing together again!

After the Plague: A Survey of Sacred and Secular Polyphony of the High Middle Ages

Friday, March 19, 4:45 – 5:45 pm
Instructor: Greta Feeney
Best for: High school, adults
Please have ready: Just yourself!

Composers Francesco Landini and Guillaume de Machaut were amongst the forty percent of the European population that survived the Black Death during the fourteenth century. What kind of music sustained people during this time? Learn more about the polyphony of the high middle ages, and how this ‘plague music’ engendered the Renaissance. Questions and conversation are welcome!

What is Music Therapy?

Friday, March 19, 7:15 – 8:15 pm
Instructor: Krystal Bloom
Best for: High school, adults
Please have ready: A “homemade” instrument (eg. pot with spoon, coffee can with lid, two spoons, etc.) or an instrument of choice!

What is music therapy? Perhaps it’s singing at someone’s bedside, or putting on a pair of headphones and listening to a good playlist when you’re upset. If you’ve ever asked this question or had these ideas about music therapy, this is a great workshop for you! We’ll define music therapy, who does it, how it’s done, and explore the science behind it. You’ll also get a taste of music therapy through intervention examples that showcase just how and why music therapy works.

Schumann’s Kreisleriana: Analysis and Performance

Saturday, March 20, 11:30 am – 12:30 pm
Instructor: Svetlana Krasnova
Best for: Middle school, high school, adults
Please have ready: Just yourself!

Join instructor Svetlana Krasnova as she talks a bit about Schumann as a composer and musical critic, and his fondness for the German romantic poetry and literature. She’ll then talk about, play, and analyze Kreisleriana.

Critical Listening for Every Musician

Saturday, March 20, 2:00 – 3:00 pm
Instructor: Spencer Aston
Best for: Middle school, high school, adults
Please have ready: Headphones to maximize listening experience, and a fast internet connection to ensure quality of musical stream.

You know that it’s important to listen to music recordings and concerts do you know how to listen critically? In our session, we will explore ways to listen critically and extract key musical elements that can have a great impact on the meaning of the piece and, when appropriate, how we apply those observations to our own practice and preparations for performance.

Viriditas: Sacred Greening of the 11th Century – Exploring the Environmental Movement of Hildegard Von Bingen

Saturday, March 20, 4:30 – 5:30 pm
Instructor: Greta Feeney
Best for: High school, adults
Please have ready: Just yourself!

11th Century Catholic mystic theologian, polymath, composer, poet and natural scientist Hildegard Von Bingen is credited with being the first German natural scientist and the first published composer of sacred chant and polyphony. ‘Viriditas’, or ‘noble greenness’, is a theme she explores widely in her vocal music, which espouses a sacred connection to nature. Explore 5 selections of Hildegard’s lyric poetry in Latin with English translations, to better understand why the Sibyl of the Rhine was thought to possess the gift of prophesy, and how her music and philosophy pertains more than ever to 21st century life. Questions and conversation are welcome!

Listen, Move, Sing!

Saturday, March 20, 9:00 – 9:45 am
Instructor: Elizabeth Chladil
Best for: Elementary students
Please have ready: Paper and something to write with. As this is a movement-based class, participants should be in a space with room to move several steps in each direction and be ready to participate with their video on.

Meet new animal friends and learn a new song through listening and movement games! In this 45-minute online workshop, participants ages 6-8 will use their bodies and voices to explore, practice, and identify notes values of different lengths.