Cantabella children's camps start today

Sessions offer music, movement, artistic expression

The Cantabella Children's Chorus is offering "Choral, Rhythm and Movement" summer camps in Pleasanton for five days starting today and for another five days starting next Monday in Livermore.

The camps are for those ages 6-9 and 10-12. No prior musical experience is required.

"We really would like to introduce children to the wonders of music how exciting it is, how enjoyable it is and how interesting it is to learn about it," said Cantabella director Grace Edwards, one of two teachers leading the camps.

"We believe that humans have the innate desire to learn and discover," Edwards added. "We teach singing games to young children with no music skills so that they become comfortable with movements, develop their social skills, their creativity, good singing habits, and, finally, it is from these games that they develop music literacy."

Campers experience carefully chosen traditional folk songs, games and plays from around the world. Through this repertoire, Edwards and the other teacher, Jody Harcourt, introduce musical concepts, reading music, singing parts, writing music and creative work.

"We allow them to discover the notes and rhythm in the songs that they have had so much fun with, and it is even more exciting to them to realize that they can learn to read music from these fun songs," Edwards said.

Students also prepare choral music arranged specifically for young singers for their end-of-camp performance for parents and community members.

Those who attend the camps are encouraged to continue their training after camp by enrolling in one of Cantabella's training choirs. Classes are offered through the school year in Dublin, Pleasanton and Livermore.

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