Playshop Session Descriptions

Here are some of the NEW program sessions we’re planning at the 2016 Hawaii Facilitators Immersion Playshop.

Sessions with Arthur Hull

Rhythmical Alchemy Games & Activities

Arthur teaching vert 300Each morning, Arthur will reach deep into his enormous assortment of rhythm games to teach us fun ways to play, sing, dance and drum with participant groups.  We’ll learn how to create musical fun in a nurturing style using musical ice-breakers, contact & theater improv, vocal games, rhythmical games, hand drumming, and drum circle consciousness.




With Jim Boneau

The Art of Facilitation

As a DCF, you are only scratching the surface of how facilitation skills and practices can shape all the groups and relationships in your life – both professionally and personally. In this session, we will explore an model of Facilitative Relationships designed to move the best of your role as a DCF from the circle and into your life, relationships and community.

Jim fac vert 300

Making the Most of the Window of Communication

Part of the role of a DCF is to use Windows of Communication to extend the message and meaning of the Drum Circle experience. We often discuss the concept of the Iceberg: What we see is the DCF skills; what is below the water line is the intention, values and purpose of the Drum Circle, the participants and the facilitator. The Window of Communication is the time in your events to speak on Metaphor, Message and Meaning of the Drum Circle experience. In this interactive session, you will get to practice delivering windows of communication, understand metaphor and it’s power in a drum circle, and consider how to turn a sponsor’s message into meaning for the drum circle participants.

With Cameron Tummel

DCF Rudiments: Call and Response

Cameron fac vert crop 300Call and Response is one of the most universally applicable DCF techniques. This session is for beginning DCFs to learn new rhythms and experiment in a safe learning environment; intermediate DCFs can practice longer phrases, different instruments, and experiment with volume dynamics; and advanced DCFs can adjust the tempo of the groove, showcase other players, demonstrate playing techniques, and more. This is a participatory activity that prioritizes experimentation above perfection. We’re not going to spend time processing or providing feedback for one another, just play, play, play, so everyone gets as many opportunities as possible. Bring water, sunscreen, and the instrument/s you want to become more versatile with.

Variations on the Northern Hemisphere’s Most Common Rhythm

For all the delicious diversity of life and humanity, we neurotically retreat to the same five-note pattern time and time again. The universally merciless five-note rhythmic dirge grabs hold of our grooves, restricts our rhythmic options to the realms of habit and familiarity, and there we stay, stuck in the endless repetitions of BOOM, BOOM, BOOM-BOOM-BOOM (rhymes with “yum, yum, bubblegum” or “same damn groove again”) for seemingly all eternity. Let’s fix that. This session examines the zen simplicity of that universal five note pattern, and why it is so easy to play, remember, and keep playing. Then we will create new and different versions of it. This session gives us all (a) options for steering our grooves away from stagnation, (b) easy ways to create variations we my enjoy playing or sharing, and (c) a model for creating variations that can be applied to ALL rhythms, giving us endless rhythmical possibilities for grooves, riffs, call and response, and other applications. This is not a rhythmic theory class. It’s an easy to use approach to composing and improvising when you feel the groove gets stuck or is ready for change.

Crazy Solo Game

As beginning drummers, when we get asked or invited to… y’know… the S word… SOLO (gasp!), it can be uncomfortable, embarrassing, and downright scary. If you have ever felt intimidated by the concept, felt like you didn’t know how to play a solo, or wished you had a safe and inconsequential way to practice, this session is for you. Crazy Solo Game is a user friendly way to experiment with soloing that is fun to do, offers different levels of challenge, and is easy to facilitate within your drum circles. In Crazy Solo, we’re all going to solo at the same time. (Imagine that…) It’s total cacophony. That’s why I named it Crazy Solo. But the fun part is, when everyone solos simultaneously, no one is listening, so the apprehension is dissolved and we can improvise freely. If you are already an accomplished soloist, this game is a useful tool for all your students and participants to develop their soloing skills.

DCF Mastery: Flow and Sequence

Why do some drum circles feel choppy and disconnected, while other events feel like a smooth, powerful progression? Masterful drum circle facilitation includes awareness of the overall flow of the event, deciding when to intervene, when to get out of the way (GOOW), which interventions are most appropriate, and the ability to facilitate sequences. We’ll discuss how to keep the orchestration spot “hot,” so all communication stays as effective as possible, and which interventions may be best earlier in the event, or later. Let’s discuss telegraphing, minimalism, when to GOOW, and when to facilitate sequences. Let’s discuss the significance of flow and sequence within our drum circles. And let’s be sure to include time for experimentation and questions. This will be an opportunity to discuss some of the most prevalent facilitation challenges we all encounter on the road to improving our skills.

With Mary Tolena

When It’s Not About Drumming:
Program design for adult and corporate groups

Mary standing 300When you’re asked to provide a program for a professional setting, like for a conference or company team building, there’s one crucial thing to keep in mind:  Unlike participants in a community drum circle or similar self-selected setting, your participants didn’t come there to drum.  In fact, some may not even want to.  Therefore, you need strategies to a) overcome resistance and get them comfortable, and b) make the “Why Are We Doing This?” relevance very clear.

Mary will share her proven methods to meet skeptical audiences where they are, help them relax into the drumming experience, and open to the powerful lessons and metaphors of the drum circle experience.

Make It Your Own:  Creating a DCF practice based on personal strengths and experiences

The Community Drum Circle model has such broad applicability, it’s natural to either want to drum with many different kinds of groups, or think we should.

That’s nice in theory, but if you want to do this as a business (whether full- or part-time), trying to reach multiple target markets simultaneously simply means you’ll make slow progress with each one.  The adage in the marketing world is, “Trying to market to everyone means you’re marketing to no one.”  There is no such thing as Generic Drum Circle Facilitation.  You are marketing YOU, your style, your interests, and your passions.

In this session, you’ll develop your focus on your most natural target audience(s), based on your past experience, temperament, existing professional and personal networks, and your own “Big Why” — your personal mission.  By knowing clearly who you want to help, and what benefits you can offer them, you’ll be on your way to create powerful programs for specific results, and clear marketing copy that speak directly to your target clients.  Those who already know their target audience(s) will develop further clarity about their message and marketing appeal.