Here impressions of the workshop in Mirtos, Crete, 2010, 2011
Seminars & Workshops Greek music
In the Greek musicworkshops, lead by Michiel Koperdraat, we concern ourselves with
different styles of Greek music, dependent on the instruments or preferences of
the participants. We will handle: orchestration, style & idiom, instrument
technique, theory on keys and rhythms, the use of ‘quarter tones’ and last
but not least improvisation, for which Greek music is so well known.
Greek music offers a lot of opportunities for singing and the use of a
host of instruments.One can draw on
thousands of Greek songs written in numerous rhythms and keys, thus enabling
oneself to travel on a journey in which one can discover one’s own
potentialities for either singing or playing an instrument. This applies both to
lead- and accompaniment instruments.
Greek songs can be performed in various ways: simple or abundant, which
is what the Greek musicians themselves do. A certain song can sometimes be found
in an abundance of versions, because every performer will give his own
interpretation – Greek musicians enjoy improvising! And that is just how
Michiel Koperdraat is conducting the workshops.
The participants will decide together
how a piece of music will finally sound in the end. Everybody absorbs melodies
by listening carefullyso you know
beforehand everyone has his own interpretation of the melody.Because attention will be paid to the Greek arts of composition, the
melodies will gradually become more ‘Greek’. Those arts of composition will
be translated individually to each participant’s own instrument and
possibilities. Moreover, we will concern ourselves with the intonation of
Because Greek music draws from Eastern tradition, ‘quarter (micro)
tones’ are still used a lot to give a melody its very own characteristics. It’s
great fun to indulge deeper into this: it’s very good for the hearing- and
listening skills, greatly enriches your performance and enlarges your ability to
intonate freely and playfully.
The advantage of learning music by ear is that you will develop your
hearing skills and your musical memory. Also, it strengthens the relationship
with your own instrument. Your instrument will become part of yourself much
sooner and the sounds you produce together will become more important for you,
as being the performer, you're not only serving the music, but the music
is also at the service of your own expression!
little village where we have our workshop (locations vary).
On the pictures
you can see Michiel explaining about bouzouki-techniques and Greek music theory. Needless
to say, Greece is the best place for studying and playing Greek music. Everything around you breathes
music, and the locals love it!
In May 2003, for the first time another workshop was organized by Ano
Crete. This workshop was intended especially for those who had been playing
Greek music for some time already, individually
or as a group.
At night, we performed with gusto at the local taverns. The local people
greatly appreciated this! And at the end of the week, we had two official
presentations for all the people in the village, visitors and locals alike.
Our location is the small village of Mirtos, located at the South
coast of Crete. Participants stay in spacious apartments. In the village, at
the town community hall, we had the use of a great rehearsel room. Mornings and afternoons were filled with working
The central theme of the
workshops is: ‘everybody can
learn to improvise’. We will pay attention to the possibilities of the
participants to express themselves on their instruments. Playing improvisations
gives the musician a great way to discover his own musical possibilities.
Main starting point is that everybody can learn to improvise and therefore
being able to tell their own musical story.All it takes is a little pluck.
During the workshops you will develop a large ‘vocabulary’ which
enables you to express yourself better
on your instrument.
For good improvisation a good technique is essential. This is just the thing we will teach you
in an enjoyable way.
The workshops are meant for (amateur-)musicians who wish to develop their
musicality and for those who ‘feel stuck’. Also the ones who want to develop their composing and writing skills (as opposed to
merely perform) are very welcome.
Coaching and 'study orchestra's' in the Netherlands
A successful presentation of an orchestra at a show or concert depends on
many factors. It is not enough just to have a well-rehearsed play list.
Unforeseen problems can raise their ugly heads just at the supreme moment and
thus stand in the way of success. This is always disturbing, more so if the audience and the artists have been looking forward to the
performance, or if a recording session is about to take place. How does one
prevent those problems and who will take the responsibility of pointing out the
weak and/or blind spots? And what to do about stage fright?
Various groups can seek coaching by Michiel Koperdraat. For example a
musical group that wants to improve their arrangements and improvisation, or is
looking for a better way to present itself to an
Merely working at the presentation of a group alone can already improve
things a lot.Musical, individual and group presentation, alone and in combination
with the music, will be dealt with extensively.
After examining the group from different angles (from the musician, from
the audience, from the person who wants to book the group), Michiel Koperdraat
will present different suggestions. If needed, he offers the necessary trainings.
Several times Ano Kato founded by Michiel Koperdraat very enthusiastic
These orchestras study the same subjects as in the workshops. The
only difference is that the orchestras want to form a strong team and work on
their performance as well.