With instruments from all over the world, Fun-do-mental Music offers a unique glimpse at the basic fundamentals of music, and at the ways instruments have influenced compositional styles over the centuries.
Composer David De Palo leads classes through hands-on explorations of the instruments: how they're played, what they're meant to sound like--and what they can sound like.
A typical instruction might begin:
"The harmonium was introduced in India during the mid nineteenth century. Originally brought over by French missionaries, it was quickly assimilated into Indian culture. Indeed, the drones stops were developed in India. Here, why don't you pump the bellows?"
A ten-year-old girl obeys and a resonant Eb drone issues forth from the little instruments. David holds up a small gourd-shaped instrument with a single string stretched between two flexible planks of bamboo.
"This, the gopichand, is used by religious mendicants for accompanying pastoral songs and is a favorite instrument of the bauls of Bengal. It's used mainly as a rhythmic instrument. Here, I've tuned these three to the drone. Go ahead, just pluck the single string gently while flexing the bamboo..."
In this way, eventually all students are playing an instrument--an instrument which they have, in all likelihood, never heard or seen before--and what's more: they're making music!
The studio can accommodate up to forty students at a time (though more can be watching from the entry and waiting rooms).
Demonstration/lessons are 55 minutes long.
Handicapped accessible. Located on Thousand Oaks Blvd. between Rancho and Erbes roads.
Pricing: $11 per student ($15 if majority of group is under 5)