Drumming up interest in music / By Teddy Sawyer for Wells Fargo Center for the Arts

“My favorite part is the cymbals! Well, just how you can go ‘bud duh dum dum!’” Anastasia, 9, one of the 25 kids enrolled in this week’s music camp at the Wells Fargo Center for the Arts, said. “Music camp is awesome!”

For many of these kids, this was the first opportunity to try out and learn many instruments, such as Anastasia on the drums. The camp, lead by Andrew DeVeny and Erik Weidenhamer, offers kids exposure and a certain degree of lessons in a variety of instruments and basic musical theory.

Not limited simply to playing and listening to instruments, the campers also arrange themselves into groups of two to six in bands, which they then name and design cover art for a CD.  Each group records tracks for the CD of their own original music, which they get to keep.

The goal is to give as much studio time as possible, said Weidenhamer, so bands of about four members are best and gives the kids the maximum time for both practice and for play.

When not using the studio, the campers also are crafting and ornamenting miniature three stringed guitars called ‘dulcimers’ and have open access to the drum room, where they can learn a variety of beats on the drum set and try out several other kinds of percussion instruments.

This is the first of two weeks of music camp, the first from July 23 to 27, the second from July 30 to August 3, which will be directed towards a slightly older age group and offer DJ-ing and a greater amount of musical theory for those who desire it.  Click here for more information about Music Camp and to sign up for week two.