Stephen Seifert

Mountain Dulcimer Player

Homepage of Mountain Dulcimer performer and teacher Stephen Seifert.

August 12-15, 2020, La Vergne, TN, Chromatic Mountain Dulcimer A to Z Class

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la vergne 02.gif

August 12-15, 2020, La Vergne, TN, Chromatic Mountain Dulcimer A to Z Class

97.50

[The workshop fee is $195. The $97.50 you pay to register is a non-refundable deposit. The remaining $97.50 is due in person at the beginning of your first day in class.]

Dates:

The dates are August 12-14 for first-time students and August 13-15 for alumni of my three-day chromatic intensives.

Location:

La Vergne Public Library
5063 Murfreesboro Rd
La Vergne, TN

Class Description:

This is a three day intensive training workshop for chromatic mountain dulcimer players of all levels looking to improve their skills. You must have a chromatic mountain dulcimer to take this class. A regular mountain dulcimer will not work.

Join me, Stephen Seifert, in La Vergne, TN, August 15-17, 2019, for a 3-day comprehensive guided tour of chromatic mountain dulcimer playing philosophy, technique, and music for ALL LEVELS. Regardless of your level of musicianship, I want to give you the big picture. 

In response to student feedback as well as my own ideas about what would make this class better, I’ve made some changes for 2020.

I now teach for four days but students will typically only take three. First-time students take the first three days. Alumni take the last three days. Any student is welcome to attend all four days, but please keep in mind, the fourth day is specifically for upper-intermediate to advanced players. We’ll move fast and I’ll stay focused accordingly.

Mornings are now for technique. Afternoons are for repertoire. I’m also adding a short assisted jam to the end of the first three days.

No matter what you’re new to or already good at, my method of playing and learning to play can help you be a better musician. This hands-on, pick-moving approach will include plenty of tunes and playing exercises designed to challenge and encourage. There ARE wrong ways to play the dulcimer. Let me help you find what’s right for you.

I want to do more than teach you how to reproduce what I or someone else has already created. I want to show you how to thrill both you and your listener with an approach to playing music that’s all about passionate creation and not just about reciting the same thing over and over. I want to give you the truth about how many of your favorite musicians do what they do. These concepts work regardless of how experienced you are or how simple or complex your music is. My goal is to surprise you with what you’re really capable of.

This intensive is geared towards intermediate to advanced musicians, but more important than specific levels, this workshop is for students interested in focusing on concepts, technique and musicianship. While repertoire will be given out, that is not the focus.

When it comes to chromatic mountain dulcimer, there's a lot of different approaches and interests. Some of you are singers and you want to be able to play any chord needed for the songs you sing. Some want to learn more about blues improvisation or how to arrange classic jazz melodies. Some want to play standard mountain dulcimer repertoire but with the occasional fancy chromatic lick. Maybe you just want to jam. Maybe you're not even sure why you have a chromatic at all. Some of you are coming from the dulcimer world and some are coming from guitar or piano. I want to help all of you and that means focusing on musicianship FIRST, not repertoire. I absolutely want to cover some fun arrangements, but I want to keep the emphasis on concepts, techniques, and solving musical problems. When I do hand out tunes, I will be using both chromatic and dulcimer fret numbering. We'll work on left and right hand technique. We'll spend a good bit of time on scales, chords, progressions, patterns, etc. 

Genres might include:

  • American and Irish fiddle tunes

  • Hymns

  • Old-Time Songs

  • Bluegrass

  • Blues

  • Jazz

These intensives are always evolving. You can expect refinements to my teaching methods, new topics, and new music. I’m always blending the old with the new. It keeps me excited but it also means you can get something new out of this class every time you take it. (I’m always open to new ideas. Shoot me an email at stephen@stephenseifert.com and I’ll see what I can do.)

More than anything, realize this is one of the only focused chromatic events in the known galaxy and I want to be open and agile when it comes to sharing and learning from each other. If there's something you really want to do on chromatic dulcimer, make sure your voice is heard. I’m expecting varied levels and interests and I’m ready for it. Expect to do a little bit of everything. 

When it comes to beginner vs. intermediate vs advanced, it's really hard to say who's who because the label we give depends on the topic and the technique and whether you have a rich music background, etc. All levels are welcome but I am seeking brave and passionate students who understand this unique subject requires cooperation and flexibility. If you're interested, I want you to come. If you have concerns, contact me.

Schedule:

8:30 a.m. - Doors open.

9:00 a.m. to Noon - Morning session where we mostly work on technique.

Noon to 1:30 p.m. - Lunch

1:30 p.m. to 3:30 - Afternoon session where we mostly work on tunes and songs.

3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. - Organized jamming where we use what we’ve learned to play with others.

5:00 p.m. - Doors lock.

Meals:

Meals aren't included in the price but we often eat together.

Fee:

The workshop fee is $195 for the three days you attend. A non-refundable deposit of $97.50 is required up front to register and reserve a seat in the class. The remaining $97.50 is due in person on your first day.

Contact Information:

Have any questions? Ask away! Email Stephen at stephen@stephenseifert.com.

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