May 2, 2015

Learn to play the bandura at summer camp

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Alexandra Holowatyj

Instructor Borys Ostapienko helps Roxolana Shepko.

Kobzarska Sich 2014 in action with a full-ensemble rehearsal lead by Yurij Petlura.

Julian Hayda

Kobzarska Sich 2014 in action with a full-ensemble rehearsal lead by Yurij Petlura.

EMLENTON, Pa. – Over the last year, communities around North America have experienced the bandura in an artistically different light: through film. The film “The Guide” (Povodyr) and the documentary “Music of Survival” emerged in late 2014 and early 2015, telling the story of the bandura and its journey throughout the 20th century. While commonly thought to be an instrument difficult to learn, one can follow in this role of musical ambassadorship by taking lessons this summer at the annual Kobzarska Sich Bandura Camp (KS).

New bandurists and long-time bandura enthusiasts will converge this August 1-15 at All Saints Camp in Emlenton, Pa. Since 1979, over 1,000 bandurists have made KS a temporary home in their musical journey. KS is organized by the Ukrainian Bandurist Chorus.

This year, participants will have an opportunity to learn from the artistic director and conductor of the Ukrainian Bandurist Chorus, Oleh Mahlay. As music director and conductor of KS 2015, Mr. Mahlay will lead a talented line-up of bandura and choral instructors.

Instructor Borys Ostapienko helps Roxolana Shepko.

Alexandra Holowatyj

Instructor Borys Ostapienko helps Roxolana Shepko.

Designed for children age 12 and older, as well as adults of all ages, KS teaches the technique of playing bandura, bandura history and elementary music theory (as needed), while working in small groups and ensembles. Campers prepare for a final concert to be held on the last day of camp.

Plenty of free time is built into the program in order for participants and staff to collaborate musically and develop lifelong friendships. Like other cultural, music and youth group camps, attendees converge from all over North America.

KS has announced four scholarship opportunities this year. One full scholarship will be available through the Ivan Zinchuk Memorial Scholarship Fund at the Ukrainian Canadian Foundation of Taras Shevchenko. Additionally, partial scholarships will be available through the Eugene Ciura, Monica Pearson Romaniuk and Maria Krislatyj funds. Scholarships applications must be received by June 15.

Interested participants are encouraged to enroll early to ensure placement. For more information, scholarship requirements and a registration package, visit www.bandura.org or contact the administrator of Kobzarska Sich, Anatoli Murha, at 734-658-6452 or ks@bandura.org.