Student Cycles


Carleton University, West African Rhythm Ensemble
performing Atsiagbekor
March 30, 2014

Last night, the Carleton University ensemble I direct had our end of year show. Having experienced cycles of students for many years now, both at the University and in the community with my high school-age group Baobab, I am familiar with saying goodbye. Sometimes students are with me for a brief time, others four, five, even seven years. Its a privilege to share time during such a remarkable period of change in their lives. Being able to make music with them is really a pleasure. Watching their talents, confidence, and skills emerge along with their individual personalities is what keeps me coming back. Its always fresh! You never know when you meet a student, how they will unfold and what they will bring and share with the collective community. So much mentoring happens between them that sometimes I stand back in awe,  and just facilitate…they are teaching each other in the best way. Watching them take on leadership roles both artistically and administratively is so gratifying.

This healthy cycle of renewal is sometimes painful,  as it is hard to say goodbye to those who myself and the group have come to rely on, but inevitably there will be new faces and talents coming forward. I wish all those leaving WARE the best of luck and look forward to seeing all the new growth that is yet to come.


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