The 22nd annual Vankleek Hill Music Festival Music & Arts Summer Camp came to a rousing close, with the traditional show at the end of the two-week camp session taking place on Friday, July 15.
This year, 42 campers, ranging in age from six to 12 years of age, took part in the camp – organized by the not-for-profit Vankleek Hill Music Festival. The camp took place at Vankleek Hill Collegiate Institute.
Campers were organized into four groups: Older kids with/without music knowledge and younger kids with/without music knowledge. Although all children took part in the instrumental ensembles, the ones who could read music were given the trickier parts, while the music novices were given easier, more ‘patterned’ parts, said camp coordinator and music instructor ian hepburn.
In Week 1, all kids played all instruments: ukulele, xylophone, harp and djembe. In Week 2, the kids chose the instrument they wanted to play for the final show.
The teachers included:: Alice Rodger – ukelele, Christos Bereris – xylophone; Wayne Stoute – percussion; ian – harp; Laurence Vaillant– choir & drama; Daniela Genest – art; assistant – Isabelle Lariviere.
Vaillant taught choir and drama where the division of music knowledge wasn’t the main determinant of the songs or plays to be learned. The younger kids learned a song with two parts while the song the older kids learned had solos and ‘quintet’ and ‘quartet’ groupings. Everyone joined together at the end with Bobby McFerrin’s “Don’t worry, be happy”.
Camp organizers are grateful to Grenville Elementary School for the loan of the xylophones, djembe and outdoor sports equipment.
“Whether it is our annual Music Festival concerts or concerts at area long-term care residences or the annual Music & Arts Summer Camp, we are the keeper of the music flame in this community. The schools may have dropped the ball, but as long as we continue our music-teaching work, music will continue to shine its light at a time when we need that light more than ever,” ended hepburn.