4th – 6th October 2019
Great line up of teachers in a pristine location. Workshops for all levels, Communal Bonfire Jams

Our 2019 Spring Drum Retreat offers drum classes for beginner, intermediate and advanced levels with a variety of awesome teachers.
Bassidi Kone (Mali), Boubacar Gaye (Senegal) , Mohamed Camera (Guinea) and Simon Fraser (Aus) headlining this year!

Drum
Learning in this environment will do wonders for your drumming: the djembe always repays the time you invest in it. A weekend of drumming will challenge you in terms of stamina and retention, as well as the content you tackle. You’ll actually notice the difference in your playing most after the event – the flow given by training muscle memory and the tuning of your ear to an immersion in the music will show the few days after.

Dance
Jacqui Dressens is back with her infectious dance sessions. Jacqui’s Sat arvo session will really get you sweating and we will work up a super cool trad choreography for our Sunday concert.

Testimonials
“Just wanted to say what a great weekend Crystal and I enjoyed. What a fantastic group of people. Across the board from Masters to Beginners we found everybody to be so pleasant. Also the teachers that I encountered were fantastic. Laura is so amazing at teaching and explaining clearly. We learnt so much from all including yourself. Once again thank you for all you did to make the weekend successful and amazing. Cheers.” – Cliff Strobel

It’s going to be a Choca Block schedule!

Stay tuned for tweaks to the schedule below

Friday night – optional ($40)
5pm: Let the music begin – chill jam
Dinner
Bonfire Jam

Saturday
9.00am……. Registration
10.00am       Communal Welcome & Warm Up with Simon Fraser
10.45 – 12.30pm    Drumming (Beginners & Intermediate/Advanced)
LUNCH
2.00 – 3pm        All in Dun Class with Bouba (all Levels)
3.15 – 5pm         Drumming (Beginners & Intermediate/Advanced)
TEA
5.30 -6.30pm       Dance and Drum session
Dinner
8pm: All Stars Live show with Dun Teke & Teachers
9pm: Bonfire Jam

Sunday
9.30 – 10.15am       All in Boot Camp Warm Up with Simon Fraser – get those hands moving!
10.30 – 12.15pm    Drumming (Beginners & Intermediate/Advanced)
12.20 – 1pm            All in Duns with Bouba
LUNCH
2.15 – 3.45pm        Drumming (Beginners & Intermediate/Advanced)
4 – 4.30pm            Final Group Show

Location

Set in a peaceful valley, we’ll be completely surrounded by the pristine Great Otway National Park. At 90 minutes out of Melbourne, it’s far enough to feel like a real getaway, but still an easy journey by car.

– Comfortable bunk-style log cabins
– Camp sites or campervan parking available if preferred (same rate as normal accommodation)
– Big communal kitchen with utensils and cutlery
– Large performance hall with a fireplace
– Bonfire area

Sokil – 90 minutes from Melbourne
425 Breakfast Creek Road
Wensleydale
Melways Ref: 611 C10

Sokil
425 Breakfast Creek Road
Wensleydale
Melways Ref: 611 C10
http://www.sokil.com.au/location_map.html

From Melbourne (aprox 90 mins)

Take the M1 heading West
Bypassing Geelong, this becomes the A1 (Princes Hwy)
Turn Left onto Cape Otway Rd
Continue through Moriac and Modewarre
Turn left at Wensleydale Station Rd. Wurdiboluc Reservoir will be on your right
Continue approximately 7kms, until the road turns to gravel
At the intersection, follow the road straight into the Great Otway National Park (do not turn left here into Gum flats road)
Continue on the gravel road, past Alsop Track
Turn left onto Breakfast Creek Rd (do not turn right onto Hammonds Track)
Continue 3.5km into the valley
Sokil’s gate is on the left – just over the small bridge!

Rates

Payable in cash on the weekend

We can easily put together a discount for families or large groups – please call or email us for details. Non-drumming friends and family are very welcome

Tuition & Saturday Accommodation……$230/$200 (concession)
Friday Night Accommodation……………….. $40
Standard Day Rate……………………………….. $120/$100 (concession)
Non – Drummers weekend (includes Sat night).. $130/$110 (concession)
Non – Drummers day……………………………. $40
Drum Hire (booking required)……………….. $10

What should I bring?
A drum if you have one – if not you can hire one for $10
BYO food/drinks (Sokil has a large commercial kitchen with cutlery etc)
Shoes to dance in
Sleeping bag and pillow
Warm clothes

I’m an absolute beginner, can I come along?
Sure! We welcome beginners and our sessions will suit you. It’s a great chance to mingle with those who have been drumming longer and pick up tips and tricks from peers

What’s the address?
Sokil
425 Breakfast Creek Road
Wensleydale
Melways Ref: 611 C10

Meet the teachers…

Bassidi Kone

Teacher

Bassidi is of Bwa ethnicity from the Segou region in Mali. Born into a Griot family, Bassidi grew up beside his father’s bala (the balafon, a traditional wooden xylophone), instilling in him, his forefather’s traditional village rhythms and songs. From a young age, Bassidi carried on his family’s musical heritage, showing promising skill in both the bala and djembe. After moving to Bamako at thirteen, Bassidi met Koninba Bagayogo, a meeting that profoundly influenced his musical career as a percussionist. Playing alongside this master djembe player, the young Bassidi extended his knowledge and skill, distinguishing himself through his innovating solo lead playing and technical virtuosity. Driven to defend his rich Bwa ethnicity, Bassidi formed his multi-instrumental percussion and dance troupe, Bwazan (‘Bwa children’) in 2005; a family group of brothers, sisters and cousins from the same line of Griots. Today, Bwazan are ambassadors of their musical heritage, promoting a message of peace, freedom, humility and solidarity.

Simon Fraser

Director

Simon has been drumming his heart out all his life. Starting with plastic drum-kits and pots n pans as a kid and then graduating to a drum kit, he’s played many styles of music and found his passion in West African rhythms. Annual trips to West Africa since the mid 1990’s have seen him collaborate with some of the regions’ great percussionists. Simon returns to the region every year in search of new music, running a Tour to Africa. His love and knowledge of rhythm translates to his teaching where he focuses on tapping into your creativity, dexterity, honoring tradition and having fun.

Mohamed Camara

Teacher

Mohamed Camara has been performing and teaching traditional Guinean percussion for over a decade. Former djembe soloist for internationally-renowned Guinean ensembles Ballet Destin, Ballet Bolonta and Les Sorciers de Guinée, Mohamed has studied and performed with master drummers Aliou Sylla, Fadouba Oularé, and Miriam Makeba’s percussionist Papa Kouyaté.

Boubacar Gaye

Teacher

Bouba first laid his hands on a drum in Senegal at the budding age of 14. Inspired by the musical mentors around him he became a member of the infamous Mama Afrika. Under the guidance of ballet professor Joseph-Raphael Bouschanzl, Bouba’s skills and passion grew quickly and soon he was also a member of the renowned Foret Sacre Ballet. In 1997 Bouba ventured to Europe and then onto Japan where he established himself as a leading African percussionists. With an energy and peace of mind that resonates from deep within – Bouba speaks a thousand words with his drum.

Bookings

Please book in early to ensure your spot!
Family and group rates are available – please ask us for more info

[email protected]
(03) 9525 3073