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Rhani Krija Percussion Clinic at CPIT Jazz School

Rhani KrijaJust wanted to let people know that there is a very special percussion event happening in Christchurch tomorrow night. The Christchurch Polytechnic’s Jazz School is hosting a percussion workshop with the Moroccan born percussionist Rhani Krija. Rhani is currently touring with Sting‘s Symphonicity concert series that will offer concerts in Christchurch and Napier with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra. This from the CHART website:

Moroccan born percussionist, Rhani Krija is currently touring New Zealand with Sting’s Symphonicity tour and performing a clinic in Christchurch on Wednesday 9th February, 7:30pm at the CPIT Jazz School.

As a teenager, he began to work professionally as a percussionist with some of the most respected musicians of the traditional Moroccan music scene, and he soon established himself as a sought-after musician, well known for his authentic grasp of Arabic, Andalusian, African and Latin American music styles. Mastering a large variety of percussion instruments such as the Darbouka, Riqq, frame drums, congas, bongos, Djembe, Caribbean timbales and many others, his musical influences today are derived from a combination of traditional Arabic and North African rhythms, Latin American styles, Blues, Reggae and Pop.

Admission will only set you back $5.00 and this promises to be a great opportunity to meet and hear a renowned international percussionist in person…! Here’s a taste of Rhani Krija doing what he loves to do:

Inspired Insights on Music from Elizabeth Petcu

Elizabeth PetcuElizabeth Petcu is a distinguished flute player who held the position of Principal Flute with the Radio Telefís Éireann Concert Orchestra of Ireland for over 25 years. A native of Bray in County Wicklow, Ireland, Elizabeth has a Masters degree in music therapy. Since her early retirement in 2006 due to advancing hearing loss, Elizabeth has been working for a diploma in Fine Art, often exhibits her ceramics, paintings and drawings and performs with the three piece music ensemble Rune and with her husband Mircea who is an accomplished violinist. In 2008 Elizabeth released Just Me, a solo album of flute music, which captures in essence Elizabeth’s true authentic sound through a brilliant interpretation of her favourite repertoire.

We are honoured and grateful to present Elizabeth Petcu’s inspired and insightful article on music.

From What to How – a paradigm shift

By Elizabeth Petcu

What does music mean is a perennial question and one raised by my music professor, Dr. Brian Boydell, at Trinity College Dublin many years ago. We never found a satisfactory answer. We never found an answer to suit everyone.

Twenty years later, as a music therapy student at the University of Limerick, we asked the same question, differently: How does music mean?

Changing a small word seemed to me to be the key to the answer and I then realised that the What question could never be solved.

For me, music does not exist on the written page or in the human memory alone but relies on a two-way process for its life: musician and listener. How does music mean includes the player’s intent – the message, that extra bit which is essential to the experience of any live, in the moment, performance.


Afterthoughts from Ronan Browne: A Lesson in Humility

Proitze MühleOver the last week since I wrote Listening and Learning with Ronan Browne, memories have been seeping back in through the defenses of time; I’ll return to that trip to the Proitze Mühle in 1995 for a further thought, this time about de-blinkering.

After the listening class, one of the participants came up to me, introduced himself and informed me that he was available to accompany me on guitar at the recital that night; I answered, as kindly as I could, that I was fine and, being self-accompanying, I wouldn’t need any backing. He asked was I sure, saying that he had accompanied the guest piper on other years and that it was a nice thing to do. I realised it would be right to say “yes, of course” so we arranged to meet later and run over a few tunes in preparation.


Listening and Learning with Ronan Browne

Ronan BrowneIn every generation there are those who feel the urge to carry forward the essence of the culture, land and peoples that they are born into and amongst. Ireland’s Ronan Browne is such a person. A renowned piper, musician, composer, teacher, writer and historian, Ronan is not only making efforts to record and promote the traditional music of Ireland but, as the article below exposes, is also discovering and teaching new ways to hear and appreciate the beauty that lies at the core of Irish traditional music, language and culture. The grandson of the renowned Irish singer Delia Murphy, Ronan lives in Conamara with his wife and two children. For more information, kindly view the Ronan Browne links at the bottom of this page.

In the following article, Ronan Browne writes about the evolution and aims of his music appreciation and listening courses. We are very honoured and most grateful to Ronan for taking the time to pen this inspiring article for The Gandharva Loka Bloggo raibh maith agat a Rónáin.

Learn to Listen – Listen to Learn

Written by Ronan Browne with photographs by Lieve Boussau


Essentially Learn to Listen – Listen to Learn is a “music appreciation/listening class” (using sound recordings, pictures and videos) where the students teach themselves how to interpret any piece of music they come across. Instead of lecturing the participants as to what they are listening to, they tell me, learning quickly to think on their own.

I have been running the course in varying lengths from 45 minutes up to 3 days – the longer you do it, the more fun you have…!