Music is commonly known as a universal language. Umm Kulthum’s music is no exception. Although her songs are more than 40 years old, they still speak to listeners, young and old, today. Her songs speak of love, longing, and homeland, and still evoke deep emotions in listeners just as they did when she first sang them.
Learning music in a group setting, through singing and playing an instrument, gives students an opportunity to learn about themselves and be part of a team. Hafez Javier Kotain, a long-time teaching artist at Al-Bustan Camp, is teaching campers more about themselves through his passion for music. Hafez began studying the doumbek in Syria at the age of seven and first performed on stage at age nine.
Although the campers have been working hard with Hafez, there is always time for their favorite game – freeze dance! Hafez plays the doumbek for them as they dance around the room, re-enforcing their sense of rhythm and the beats they have learned while still allowing them to let loose, use up some of their boundless energy, and, most importantly, have fun.
For the rest of this week, campers will spend most of their time preparing for the culminating performance this Friday, July 12, 6-7:30pm. Make sure you don’t miss it, because we know that it’s going to be great!