Latest Newsletter


Contents of this newsletter….

  • Workshops
  • Gig guide
  • Gambia Cultural Tour

King Marong News

Hi people of Australia and beyond, hoping this finds you all well!
The last few months in the life of King Marong have been busily spent travelling and workshopping in Central Australia (am writing to you from the Alice Springs Desert Festival), studying Community Cultural Development at VCA, and workshopping in schools around Australia.   Of course, after such a big beginning to the year with our epic gigs and workshops at WOMAD, Canberra Multicultural Festival, National Folk Festival, Snowy Mountains Music Festival,  Cairns Tanks and more, I’ve had a little rest too!
As we emerge from the dark months we have a range of exciting opportunities coming up in the world of African music which I hope that you’ll be part of……
WORKSHOPS
New Drumming Classes
Come and learn the vibrant rhythms of West Africa with Master Drummer and Culture Keeper King Marong.
After a break from teaching due to my busy touring schedule, I’m about to re-commence my percussion classes at Drumtek.  These classes will not only cover djembe techniques but give students the unique opportunity to explore several West African drumming styles including Sabar, Boucarabou, Doun Doun, Sewerba and more.  Classes will commence with a focus on Djembe then branch out in to these diverse drumming styles, giving students a unique and and complete cultural and musical experience.
6 week course commencing Wed 28th Sept
6.30-8.30pm
$150 (payable in full on commencement of course)
Drums supplied on request.
Drumtek
529-535 High St Northcote
*Ask about my drum making workshops, learn to re-skin your own drum or make one from start to finish.
P1050625


Drum and Dance Workshops in Alice Springs

Sat 17th Sept
Introduction to West African Drum and Dance
11am-12noon
West African Drumming Workshop
12.30-1.30pm
Suitable for those with some drumming experience.
West African Dance Workshop
2pm-3pm
Workshops $25 each with discounts for multiple workshops
Sun 18th Sept
Kids Drum and Dance Workshop
11am-12noon
13th Oct at 6PM
Open Drumming Workshop
Hume City Council
1079 Pascoevale Rd
Broadmeadows

African Party Entertainment with King Marong

Make your childs next party a hit with African drumming. Contact King to discuss how we can cater to your individual entertainment requirements with drumming, dancing, face painting and instrument making activities.

Gigs

Afro Mandinko
Sat Oct 22nd
Surrey Hills Festival Grand finale Concert
Doors from 7.30pm
Tix $30
177 Union Rd Surry Hills
Afro Mandinko
Island Vibe Festival
Stradbroke Island, QLD
28th-29th Oct
Afro Mandinko
Global Grooves Festival
Mackay QLD
Sun 30th Oct
Afro Mandinko
Sat Nov 12th
P1050641
Bentleigh Beat Festival
King Marong
Sun Nov 13th
3.15pm
Mahalang Festival
Mahalang Reserve
South Rd
West Heidelberg
STUDY TOUR in THE GAMBIA
Come and experience the music and culture of the Gambia 1st hand on…

‘Roots Wasulung’
Cultural Study Tours to The Gambia, West Africa
Visit the ‘smiling coast’ of West Africa for 1 month of music and culture with your host King Marong.

1st – 28th Feb  2012
Whether it’s the sophisticated music, the unique food, the array of traditional textiles or the historical significance of the region that interests you, this tour of a lifetime is sure to please.
Open to all people who are passionate about African music and culture. A great opportunity to experience an intensive rich cultural exchange.
Workshops in The Gambia West Africa with host Ebrima ‘King’ Marong
About The Gambia
The Gambia, well known as the ‘smiling coast’, is a small country on the north west coast of Africa . Situated on either side of the large and powerful Gambia River that dominates the country. Gambia is about 300 km long by an average of 40 km wide and is surrounded by Senegal. It has about 80 km of coastline on the Atlantic Ocean and it is also where the river meets the sea.
Gambia is vibrant, colourful and fascinating with many different tribes, traditions and a rich cultural heritage. Gambia is a melting pot of cultures with communities from every country in West Africa keeping their culture alive through their music, this makes it possible to experience the customs and become familiar with music of several different cultural groups.
This tour features several intensive day workshops with musicians, dancers and acrobats from 5 different tribes, all with different and unique performance styles and costumes. No matter what the tribal background, music and dance is an integral part of daily life in Gambia. Participants will have experiences that are unique as they witness what they are learning in its cultural context.
As well as a focus on music there are many other activities suitable for singles and families alike. The local cuisine of the region is unique and delectable and it’s preparation a fine art to master, you too can learn how to cook with local women.
The bustling open markets are a cultural experience unto themselves and the range of local textiles impressive, for those artistic folk, there is endless inspiration.
If you come from a health or education background, there is the opportunity to share your skills with the local schools and hospitals, a truly enriching experience for all involved. This tour supports socially responsible travel, whereby activities result in positive outcomes for the local community.
Climate
The climate is subtropical with wet and dry seasons (dry from November to May). Average temperatures 25°-35° C.
Language
Numerous tribal languages are spoken in Gambia but English is the official language, making it convenient to communicate and engage with the community.
Drum and Dance Courses
The courses will be held in the small coastal fishing village of Bakau . A beautiful area with many long sandy beaches, river estuaries, palm trees and baobab trees. Bakau is within easy walking distance to all amenities.
You can choose between drumming and dance or you can do both. There will be a 2 hour session in the morning followed by a break then a 2 hour session in the afternoon from Monday to Friday.
Other workshops available in conjunction with drum and dance are Kora (a 21 string gourd harp), Balafon (an African wooden xylophone) and Fulani Flute. There is also the opportunity to take lessons in other local instruments including bolombata (gourd bass) and conting/ngoni (lute) at an extra cost.
Program – Kora Music
The ‘Language of the Drum’ with its different rhythms and techniques will be taught, using both hands and sticks on Djembe, Sabar, DounDounba and Boucarabou drums.
The emphasis will be on learning different structures of rhythms, how to keep time using maracash, palm clappers and bells, the relationship between beat and offbeat and experiencing the feeling of rhythm in your entire body. There will be workshops to cater for beginners and also those advanced students who wish to refine their technique and take on more complex rhythms.
Dance Workshops
Dance workshops will teach a number of local techniques, dances, steps and cultural styles, many of which culminate in a traditional ballet.
Food and living
Accommodation will be shared with two or three others in small houses, with toilet and shower, typical of the area. Gambia has an abundance of fresh tropical fruits and vegetables. During the week 2 meals a day will be provided with lunch, the main meal of the day comprising delicious Gambian fish, meat and vegetarian dishes. A small kitchen will be available for tea & coffee or smaller meals. During the evenings the group will be visiting local nightspots and parties to experience the music in its cultural context, meals may be purchased at local restaurants for around $5 or less.
On Saturday and Sunday you are free to explore Gambia on your own or with the group at organised events such as weddings or naming ceremonies. This can also be time to practise.
Transport
Local transport is cheap easy and convenient to use. Travel costs covered when travelling as a group, travelling on one’s own certainly won’t break the bank!
Dates
1st-28th Feb 2012

Cost
1 months accommodation, tuition, meals, ground transfers and special entertainment is $3500. Flights to The Gambia should be arranged separately by travellers; assistance is available. A non-refundable $1,000 deposit is required at time of booking. Full payment one month prior to departure.
Insurance
All students are required to take out medical and travel insurance. Details provided with booking confirmation.
Vaccinations
The Gambia ‘s only mandatory health requirement is a yellow fever vaccination. Anti-malaria medication is recommended.
Visa: 1 month visa granted on entry to The Gambia, renewals as required.
Expressions of Interest
For bookings and enquiries phone King on (0061) 430 465 133 (Aust: 0430 465 133)
email: kingmarong@yahoo.com
Gambia is a country rich in culture, the openness and generosity of the people will leave a lasting impression.

Previous Newsletters……

GIG GUIDE….
Afro Mandinko

Melbourne’s hottest afro big band bringing you fat afrobeats, smooth afro reggae, steaming afro funk, dance competitions,  incredible african dancers, special guests and much more……..

Sat 3rd March

Night Cat City

279 Flinders Lane, Melbourne

10.30pm

More Afro hot dates to come………

www.afromandinko.com

P1050641

——————————————————————————————————————————–

Bec Matthews

‘Utopia’ EP launch
with band  The Kora Collective
plus special guests Aminata Doumbia, Richard Piper and Ajak Kwai
7.30pm

Wed 7th April

The Toff in Town

2/252 Swanston St

Melbourne

Tickets from moshtix, click here

‘Utopia’ is the debut release from Melbourne based singer songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Bec Matthews. Inspired by her extensive studies, travels and performances around the globe Bec has recorded a selection of original songs which she which she will perform with her band at the upcoming launch on Wed 7th April at The Toff in Town with her band the Kora Collective

Following their debut as part of the Arts Centres ’Mix It Up’ Program supporting Malian kora great Toumani Diabate, the Kora Collective return for an intimate evening of textural improvisation, original songs and music from afar.
Featuring the rare talents of globally inspired multi-instrumentalists Bec Matthews (kora, Kamelngoni),  Pin Rada (sarangi, lyra), King Marong (percussion), Richie Brain (guitars) Martin Tucker (flute, bolong) and vocalist Aminata Doumbia, the ensemble are sure to captivate with a selection of lush soundscapes, contemporary beats, and other worldly charm.
http://www.myspace.com/becmatthewskora

www.triplejunearthed.com/BecMatthews

ABC Interview, click here

bec and zoo 070

……………………………………………….
One AfricaOne Africa is the beautiful new project of Senegambian artists Lamine Sonko and King Marong with guest Bec Matthews.   Having already played at several major national and international music festivals including Bellingen Global Carnival, Reggaetown, Moomba, Blue Mountains Music Festival and Malaka Festival Malaysia the ensemble will be on the Kultour National Touring program this year as well as playing at a number of the countries much loved festivals.

One Africa

Sat 10th April

Boite World Music Cafe

1 Mark St Fitzroy

8PM

Bookings:  94171983

www.boite.com.au

more dates to be announced

www.oneafrica.com.au

……………………………….
For anyone who could not make it to the Gambia tour information night last week there will be a second information session to be held

Gambia Study Tour

Tues 13th MarchInformation Night2011 “Roots Wasulung”Cultural Tour to The Gambia, West AfricaIt’s time to get informed!If you are at all interested in finding out more about our annual study tour to The Gambia West Africa, here is your next chance…We are holding an additional information evening in Melbourne on Tues 13th March to answer all your questions and get an idea of numbers for next years tour.
If you would like to come along contact king via e-mail and we will register you for the evening which will include some tasty Gambian food for you to sample, video footage of previous tours and Bec and King answering all your questions.If you are interested in joining us in Africa but can not make this event please contact us and we will answer any questions you may have.

——————————————————————–

Yet more updates to the new website including new photos and educational program details, check out:

www.kingmarong.com

Features information about our education programs,  community and corporate drum and dance events, performances and stacks of photos.

P1050625

————————————————————————————————————————————————-

Monday Night Drumming Classes in 2010……

King returns to run his beginners and advanced drumming classes on Monday nights at

DRUMTEK

529-535 High St, Northcote.

Class Descriptions

6.00-7.00pm

Beginners class:  focus on basic hand drumming technique and simple djembe rhythms.

7.00-8.30pm

Advanced Class:  focus on more advanced drumming techniques and more complex rhythms including hand and stick technique, sabar, boucarabou and dun dun

Performance Opportunities

Throughout the year there are numerous performance opportunities, in the past these have included Australia day celebrations at Federation Square , Revolver Upstairs and Rhythm of Africa at Werribee Open Range Zoo.

Private drumming tuition is also available by negotiation.

If you wish to really immerse yourself in your study of West African Music please consider a study tour to The Gambia West Africa, details below….

P1050596

———————————————–

African Party Entertainment with King Marong

Make your childs next party a hit with African drumming. Contact King to discuss how we can cater to your individual entertainment requirements with drumming, dancing, face painting and instrument making activities.

—————————————————————————————

Other Events…..

Drum Making Courses….

Djembe shells from Guinea and The Gambia West Africa.

King will be offering drum making workshops for those interested in learning the craft, making their own drum or re-skinning an existing drum.

Pre-made drums can also be purchased.

Costs vary depending on the shell you choose.

Bookings essential.

Enquiries and bookings contact King by phone or e-mail.  Ph:  0430 465 133.

————————————————————————————
‘Roots Wasulung’ 2011
Cultural Study Tours to

The Gambia , West Africa
Jan 2011
Visit the ‘smiling coast’ of West Africa for 1 month of music and culture with your host King Marong.
Whether it’s the sophisticated music, the unique food, the array of traditional textiles or the historical significance of the region that interests you, this tour of a lifetime is sure to please.
Open to all people who are passionate about African music and culture. A great opportunity to experience an intensive rich cultural exchange.

Workshops in The Gambia
West Africa
with host Ebrima ‘King’ Marong

Jan 2011

About The Gambia
The Gambia , well known as the ‘smiling coast’, is a small country on the north west coast of Africa . Situated on either side of the large and powerful Gambia River that dominates the country. Gambia is about 300 km long by an average of 40 km wide and is surrounded by Senegal . It has about 80 km of coastline on the Atlantic Ocean and it is also where the river meets the sea.
Gambia is vibrant, colourful and fascinating with many different tribes, traditions and a rich cultural heritage. Gambia is a melting pot of cultures with communities from every country in West Africa keeping their culture alive through their music, this makes it possible to experience the customs and become familiar with music of several different cultural groups. This tour features several intensive day workshops with musicians, dancers and acrobats from 5 different tribes, all with different and unique performance styles and costumes. No matter what the tribal background, music and dance is an integral part of daily life in Gambia . Participants will have experiences that are unique as they witness what they are learning in its cultural context. As well as a focus on music there are many other activities suitable for singles and families alike. The local cuisine of the region is unique and delectible and it’s preparation a fine art to master, you too can learn how to cook with local women. The bustling open markets are a cultural experience unto themselves and the range of local textiles impressive, for those artistic folk, there is endless inspiration. If you come from a health or education background, there is the opportunity to share your skills with the local schools and hospitals, a truly enriching experience for all involved. This tour supports socially responsible travel, whereby activities result in positive outcomes for the local community.

Climate
The climate is subtropical with wet and dry seasons (dry from November to May). Average temperatures 25°-35° C.

Language
Numerous tribal languages are spoken in Gambia but English is the official language, making it convenient to communicate and engage with the community.

Drum and Dance Courses
The courses will be held in the small coastal fishing village of Bakau . A beautiful area with many long sandy beaches, river estuaries, palm trees and baobab trees. Bakau is within easy walking distance to all amenities.
You can choose between drumming and dance or you can do both. There will be a 2 hour session in the morning followed by a break then a 2 hour session in the afternoon from Monday to Friday.
Other workshops available in conjunction with drum and dance are Kora (a 21 string gourd harp), Balafon (an African wooden xylophone) and Fulani Flute. There is also the opportunity to take lessons in other local instruments including bolombata (gourd bass) and conting/ngoni (lute) at an extra cost.

Drumming Workshops
The ‘Language of the Drum’ with its different rhythms and techniques will be taught, using both hands and sticks on Djembe, Sabar, DounDounba and Boucarabou drums.
The emphasis will be on learning different structures of rhythms, how to keep time using maracash, palm clappers and bells, the relationship between beat and offbeat and experiencing the feeling of rhythm in your entire body. There will be workshops to cater for beginners and also those advanced students who wish to refine their technique and take on more complex rhythms.
Dance Workshops
Dance workshops will teach a number of local techniques, dances, steps and cultural styles, many of which culminate in a traditional ballet.

Food and living.
Accommodation will be shared with two or three others in small houses, with toilet and shower, typical of the area. Gambia has an abundance of fresh tropical fruits and vegetables. During the week 2 meals a day will be provided with lunch, the main meal of the day comprising delicious Gambian fish, meat and vegetarian dishes. A small kitchen will be available for tea & coffee or smaller meals. During the evenings the group will be visiting local nightspots and parties to experience the music in its cultural context, meals may be purchased at local restaurants for around $5 or less.
On Saturday and Sunday you are free to explore Gambia on your own or with the group at organised events such as weddings or naming ceremonies. This can also be time to practice.

Transport

Local transport is cheap easy and convenient to use. Travel costs covered when travelling as a group, travelling on one’s own certainly won’t break the bank!

Dates
Annual JUNE TOUR – commences early June to coincide with semester break.
Annual JANUARY TOUR – commences Jan 2010 (dates TBC), includes a 28 day stay in The Gambia

Cost
1 months accommodation, tuition, meals, ground transfers and special entertainment is $3500. Flights to The Gambia should be arranged separately by travellers; assistance is available. A non-refundable $1,000 deposit is required at time of booking. Full payment one month prior to departure.

Insurance
All students are required to take out medical and travel insurance. Details provided with booking confirmation.

Vaccinations
The Gambia ‘s only mandatory health requirement is a yellow fever vaccination. Anti-malaria medication is recommended.

Visa:  1 month visa granted on entry to The Gambia, renewals as required.

Expressions of Interest
For bookings and enquiries phone King on (0061) 430 465 133 (Aust: 0430 465 133)
email: kingmarong@yahoo.com

Gambia is a country rich in culture, the openness and generosity of the people will leave a lasting impression.
www.kingmarong.com

———————————————————————————————————————————————–

Instruments for sale

King still has a number of Gambian djembes and kora  (African Harp) for sale.  King also offers drum making workshops by demand for the chance to allow people to gain a greater understanding and appreciation of their instrument.

CD’s

Afro Mandinko CD is available locally from Blue Moon Records in Johnson St Fitzroy (between Brunswick and Nicholson St) and online at www.indie-cds.com or you can come to one of our up-coming gigs and get it direct from the source.  King also has a number of previous recordings available by request.

If you have a moment please check out my new website:  http://www.kingmarong.com

King Marong
Master Percussionist
The Gambia, West Africa
Melbourne, Australia
Ph: 0430 465 133
E-mail:
kingmarong@yahoo.com
Website:
www.kingmarong.com
Afro Mandinko Website: www.afromandinko.com

Afro Mandinko Myspace:  www.myspace.com/afromandinko

One Africa Website:  www.oneafrica.com.au

Afro Mandinko are now on JJJ unearthed.  If you like what we do and wish to support us please follow this link and playlist, rate and review us, MORE FIRE!

http://www.triplejunearthed.com/KingMarongAfroMandinko

KING MARONG MARCH NEWSLETTER

Mix It Up at The Arts Centre

Mix It Up at The Arts Centre

Contents of this newsletter….

  • JJJ Unearthed
  • 2011 Gambia Tour Information Night
  • Gig guide
  • Class Update: Come and try it for yourself, 1st class is FREE!
  • Website news and updates


P1040712


Afro Mandinko are now on JJJ Unearthed!

If you like what we do and would like to help support our music you can by visiting our unearthed site, commenting, playlisting and rating us!

http://www.triplejunearthed.com/KingMarongAfroMandinko

MORE FIRE!!!!

…………………………………………



Gambia Study Tour

Tues 30th March

Information Night

2011 “Roots Wasulung”

Cultural Tour to The Gambia, West Africa

It’s time to get informed!

If you are at all interested in finding out more about our annual study tour to The Gambia West Africa, here is your chance…

We are holding an information evening in Melbourne on Tues 30th March

to answer all your questions and get an idea of numbers for next years tour.

If you would like to come along contact king via e-mail and we will register you for the evening which will include some tasty Gambian food for you to sample, video footage of previous tours and Bec and King answering all your questions.

If you are interested in joining us in Africa but can not make this event please contact us and we will answer any questions you may have.


away

Gig Guide


As we near the end of another MASSIVE season of festivals, we take a moment to reflect back on the good times had! Thanks to all those event organisers and staff who put together such wonderful events as Falls, Summer Fun in the City, Globe to Globe, St Kilda Festival, Footscray Performing Arts, Pako Festa, Mix It Up, Night Cat, Ceres Reggae Fest, Werribee Zoo and to all those who we met along the way. We appreciate all your support and encourage you to get in contact with us if you would like to know more about us and the other work that we do. AND we are not quite finished yet…..



Afro Mandinko

Melbourne’s hottest afro big band bringing you fat afrobeats, smooth afro reggae, steaming afro funk, dance competitions, incredible african dancers, special guests and much more……..


Sat 27th March

Night Cat City


279 Flinders Lane, Melbourne

10.30pm


—————————————————————————


Invited back by popular demand……

Sun 28th March

Apollo Bay Music Festival

Grande Finale Concert

Plus drum and dance workshops

http://www.apollobaymusicfestival.com/



More Afro hot dates to come………


www.afromandinko.com




Sat 20th 6pm

Fitzroy Outdoor Cinema

Atherton Oval, Napier St, Fitzroy

Entertainment with King Marong

www.fitzroyoutdoorcinema.org


——————————————————————————————————————————————–

oa


One Africa

One Africa is the beautiful new project of Senegambian artists Lamine Sonko and King Marong with guest Bec Matthews. Having already played at several major national and international music festivals including Bellingen Global Carnival, Reggaetown and Malaka Festival Malaysia the ensemble will be on the Kultour National Touring program this year as well as playing at a number of the countries much loved festivals.


One Africa will also be turning their talents a slightly diferrent direction as they MC this years Cultural Quarter Stage at the 2010 Moomba Festival in Alexandra Gardens, Melbourne


One Africa Gigs


Regional Victorian Dates For Kultour


5/3/10: Wodonga Civic Centre


6/3/10: 9am Wodonga Civic Centre

10am – 11am Roaming Carnivale Show, Wodonga



9/3/10: Echuca – Paramount


See Kultour website for details of these and other performances. One Africa will be touring all states and territories over the couse of the year, stay tuned for updates.


http://www.kultour.com.au/kultour10.html



Sun 7th March

One Africa

Moomba

Cultural Quarter Stage

Peppercorn Lawn

Alexandra Gardens

8.10pm

FREE



ONE AFRICA

will be performing at the

Blue Mountains Music Festival

12-14th March

Katoomba

NSW


http://www.bmff.org.au/

One Africa

Sat 10th April

Boite World Music Cafe

1 Mark St Fitzroy

8PM

Bookings: 94171983

www.boite.com.au

more dates to be announced

www.oneafrica.com.au



SAFARA

Traditional West African drum song and dance will be performing roving and workshopping at:


Darebin Community and Kites Festival 2010

Sunday 14 March

Time: 10:00am-5:00pm

Where: All Nations Park, Northcote

www.darebin.vic.gov.au/festivals

—————————————————————————————-

Last minute announcement….

Bec Matthews Solo show this Sunday at The Builders Arms

211 Gertrude St Fitzroy

4-6pm in the front bar

FREE


bec poster copy-2

Bec Matthews

‘Utopia’ EP launch

with band Kora Collective

plus special guest Aminata Doumbia

7.30pm

Wed 7th April

The Toff in Town

2/252 Swanston St

Melbourne


‘Utopia’ is the debut release from Melbourne based singer songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Bec Matthews. Inspired by her extensive studies, travels and performances around the globe Bec has recorded a selection of original songs which she which she will perform with her band at the upcoming launch on Wed 7th April at The Toff in Town with her band the Kora Collective


Following their debut as part of the Arts Centres ‘Mix It Up’ Program supporting Malian kora great Toumani Diabate, the Kora Collective return for an intimate evening of textural improvisation, original songs and music from afar.


Featuring the rare talents of globally inspired multi-instrumentalists Bec Matthews (kora, Kamelngoni), Pin Rada (sarangi, lyra), King Marong (percussion), Richie Brain (guitars) Martin Tucker (flute, bolong) and vocalist Aminata Doumbia, the ensemble are sure to captivate with a selection of lush soundscapes, contemporary beats, and other worldly charm.


http://www.myspace.com/becmatthewskora

www.triplejunearthed.com/BecMatthews (coming soon)



——————————————————————–



Yet more updates to the new website including new photos and educational program details, check out:


www.kingmarong.com


Features information about our education programs, community and corporate drum and dance events, performances and stacks of photos.


————————————————————————————————————————————–

P1040809

Monday Night Drumming Classes in 2010……

King returns to run his beginners and advanced drumming classes on Monday nights at

DRUMTEK

529-535 High St, Northcote.

COME & TRY, FIRST CLASS FREE!

Class Descriptions

6.00-7.00pm

Beginners class: focus on basic hand drumming technique and simple djembe rhythms.


7.00-8.30pm

Advanced Class: focus on more advanced drumming techniques and more complex rhythms including hand and stick technique, sabar, boucarabou and dun dun


Performance Opportunities

Throughout the year there are numerous performance opportunities, in the past these have included Australia day celebrations at Federation Square , Revolver Upstairs and Rhythm of Africa at Werribee Open Range Zoo.


Private drumming tuition is also available by negotiation.


If you wish to really immerse yourself in your study of West African Music please consider a study tour to The Gambia West Africa, details below….

———————————————–

African Party Entertainment with King Marong


Make your childs next party a hit with African drumming. Contact King to discuss how we can cater to your individual entertainment requirements with drumming, dancing, face painting and instrument making activities.


—————————————————————————————

Other Events…..


Drum Making Courses….

Djembe shells from Guinea and The Gambia West Africa.


King will be offering drum making workshops for those interested in learning the craft, making their own drum or re-skinning an existing drum.

Pre-made drums can also be purchased.

Costs vary depending on the shell you choose.


Bookings essential.

Enquiries and bookings contact King by phone or e-mail. Ph: 0430 465 133.


————————————————————————————


‘Roots Wasulung’ 2011

Cultural Study Tours to

The Gambia , West Africa

Jan 2011

Visit the ‘smiling coast’ of West Africa for 1 month of music and culture with your host King Marong.

Whether it’s the sophisticated music, the unique food, the array of traditional textiles or the historical significance of the region that interests you, this tour of a lifetime is sure to please.

Open to all people who are passionate about African music and culture. A great opportunity to experience an intensive rich cultural exchange.


Workshops in The Gambia

West Africa

with host Ebrima ‘King’ Marong


Jan 2011

About The Gambia

The Gambia , well known as the ‘smiling coast’, is a small country on the north west coast of Africa . Situated on either side of the large and powerful Gambia River that dominates the country. Gambia is about 300 km long by an average of 40 km wide and is surrounded by Senegal . It has about 80 km of coastline on the Atlantic Ocean and it is also where the river meets the sea.

Gambia is vibrant, colourful and fascinating with many different tribes, traditions and a rich cultural heritage. Gambia is a melting pot of cultures with communities from every country in West Africa keeping their culture alive through their music, this makes it possible to experience the customs and become familiar with music of several different cultural groups. This tour features several intensive day workshops with musicians, dancers and acrobats from 5 different tribes, all with different and unique performance styles and costumes. No matter what the tribal background, music and dance is an integral part of daily life in Gambia . Participants will have experiences that are unique as they witness what they are learning in its cultural context. As well as a focus on music there are many other activities suitable for singles and families alike. The local cuisine of the region is unique and delectible and it’s preparation a fine art to master, you too can learn how to cook with local women. The bustling open markets are a cultural experience unto themselves and the range of local textiles impressive, for those artistic folk, there is endless inspiration. If you come from a health or education background, there is the opportunity to share your skills with the local schools and hospitals, a truly enriching experience for all involved. This tour supports socially responsible travel, whereby activities result in positive outcomes for the local community.


Climate

The climate is subtropical with wet and dry seasons (dry from November to May). Average temperatures 25°-35° C.


Language

Numerous tribal languages are spoken in Gambia but English is the official language, making it convenient to communicate and engage with the community.


Drum and Dance Courses

The courses will be held in the small coastal fishing village of Bakau . A beautiful area with many long sandy beaches, river estuaries, palm trees and baobab trees. Bakau is within easy walking distance to all amenities.

You can choose between drumming and dance or you can do both. There will be a 2 hour session in the morning followed by a break then a 2 hour session in the afternoon from Monday to Friday.

Other workshops available in conjunction with drum and dance are Kora (a 21 string gourd harp), Balafon (an African wooden xylophone) and Fulani Flute. There is also the opportunity to take lessons in other local instruments including bolombata (gourd bass) and conting/ngoni (lute) at an extra cost.


Drumming Workshops

The ‘Language of the Drum’ with its different rhythms and techniques will be taught, using both hands and sticks on Djembe, Sabar, DounDounba and Boucarabou drums.

The emphasis will be on learning different structures of rhythms, how to keep time using maracash, palm clappers and bells, the relationship between beat and offbeat and experiencing the feeling of rhythm in your entire body. There will be workshops to cater for beginners and also those advanced students who wish to refine their technique and take on more complex rhythms.

Dance Workshops

Dance workshops will teach a number of local techniques, dances, steps and cultural styles, many of which culminate in a traditional ballet.


Food and living.

Accommodation will be shared with two or three others in small houses, with toilet and shower, typical of the area. Gambia has an abundance of fresh tropical fruits and vegetables. During the week 2 meals a day will be provided with lunch, the main meal of the day comprising delicious Gambian fish, meat and vegetarian dishes. A small kitchen will be available for tea & coffee or smaller meals. During the evenings the group will be visiting local nightspots and parties to experience the music in its cultural context, meals may be purchased at local restaurants for around $5 or less.

On Saturday and Sunday you are free to explore Gambia on your own or with the group at organised events such as weddings or naming ceremonies. This can also be time to practice.


Transport

Local transport is cheap easy and convenient to use. Travel costs covered when travelling as a group, travelling on one’s own certainly won’t break the bank!


Dates

Annual JUNE TOUR – commences early June to coincide with semester break.

Annual JANUARY TOUR – commences Jan 2010 (dates TBC), includes a 28 day stay in The Gambia


Cost

1 months accommodation, tuition, meals, ground transfers and special entertainment is $3500. Flights to The Gambia should be arranged separately by travellers; assistance is available. A non-refundable $1,000 deposit is required at time of booking. Full payment one month prior to departure.

Insurance

All students are required to take out medical and travel insurance. Details provided with booking confirmation.

Vaccinations

The Gambia ‘s only mandatory health requirement is a yellow fever vaccination. Anti-malaria medication is recommended.

Visa: 1 month visa granted on entry to The Gambia, renewals as required.

Expressions of Interest

For bookings and enquiries phone King on (0061) 430 465 133 (Aust: 0430 465 133)

email: kingmarong@yahoo.com

Gambia is a country rich in culture, the openness and generosity of the people will leave a lasting impression.

www.kingmarong.com


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Instruments for sale

King still has a number of Gambian djembes and kora (African Harp) for sale. King also offers drum making workshops by demand for the chance to allow people to gain a greater understanding and appreciation of their instrument.


CD’s

Afro Mandinko CD is available locally from Blue Moon Records in Johnson St Fitzroy (between Brunswick and Nicholson St) and online at www.indie-cds.com or you can come to one of our up-coming gigs and get it direct from the source. King also has a number of previous recordings available by request.

African Party Entertainment with King Marong

Make your childs next party a hit with African drumming. Contact King to discuss how we can cater to your individual entertainment requirements with drumming, dancing, face painting and instrument making activities.

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