Story last updated at 5/27/2009 - 11:02 am
JUNEAU - Members of the award-winning and internationally-touring bluegrass group Bearfoot will be hosting their annual bluegrass camp for kids June 8-11 at the Juneau Arts & Culture Center. From 12-5:30 p.m. each day, children ages 5-17 will have the opportunity to explore music and learn in a supportive environment from professional musicians. The camp will culminate with a final concert at 5:30 p.m. on June 11.
Bearfoot consists of Mike Mickelson on guitar, Kate Hamre on bass, Jason Norris on mandolin, Angela Oudean on fiddle and Odessa Jorgensen, the band's newest member, on fiddle. Oudean said the band is excited to introduce Jorgensen to Juneau, describing her as a great fit.
"We're looking forward to coming back to Juneau," Oudean said. "We always like going there and seeing all the kids from the last year."
Oudean said her favorite thing about teaching at camp is "seeing kids get inspired about music."
"I like that we're providing the way for them to get together with other kids," Oudean said. "It's something to keep them going with music for the rest of the year. I remember feeling like that."
Bearfoot's members will be instructing classes at beginning, intermediate and advanced levels. Areas of study include bass, fiddle, guitar, mandolin, voice and dance. Beginning classes will teach students the basics of how to hold and play instruments. At the intermediate level, students will work on becoming stronger players and learn some basic melodies and chords. In advanced classes, students will learn new songs and work on other techniques to advance their skills.
A new addition to the camp schedule this year is an "Exploring Music" class. It is geared toward younger students and new musicians and will teach music appreciation through listening, movement, art and singing.
Bearfoot will perform at 7:30 p.m. on June 12 at Centennial Hall. Their new album, "Doors and Windows," was released on April 21 and will be available for sale while the band is in town.
Camp registration forms can be found at the JACC and jahc.org and must be submitted by June 1. Instruments are still needed for camp. If you have a fiddle, guitar, bass or mandolin that you can spare for a week, bring it to the JACC to give a child a chance to explore music. For more info, call 586-2787.