By Brandy Black
I write often about “community” and the significance it held for me as a child growing up surrounded by family, friends, and neighbors. I remember staying up late during my parents’ parties, listening to their music and conversations, always struggling to keep my eyes -and ears!- open a little longer. Guests often arrived bearing instruments, and an impromptu “concert” would unfold. I loved hearing the strum of my dad’s guitar and Mom’s voice as she sang along. Inevitably, I would konk out, and as Dad carried me to my bed, I’d wake just enough to think how cool my parents were (not that I would ever admit that to them).
Building a strong sense of community within a family can be a challenge, especially with three children. Juggling school, ballet, soccer, gymnastics, doctor appointments, homework, and all the rest is hard enough without also having to ensure the kids spend cultured time with friends. Add to that the fact that we live in a very big city, where everyone is spread out and “community” can be elusive. But I so want my children to have the sense of community that I had. And even though I might never achieve my parents’ “cool” status, well, parties and music? I can definitely manage that.
Kidspace’s new Pepper Tree Music Jam takes me back to those happy, hippy times of my childhood. Here, families will explore inherently organic, natural music through instruments created from everyday objects and the variety of interesting sounds they produce. In addition to making music, guests will participate in drum circles and jam sessions (much like my parents’ parties!), make shakers and drums, and even enjoy performances by Rhythm Child and a professional didgeridoo player.
I’m looking forward to inviting friends to join us at Kidspace where we can all kick back and watch our kids go wild to the music. Pepper Tree Music Jam is November 7th and 8th, with the digeridoo player on Saturday and Rhythm Child on Sunday. This exhibit is the first step in the larger gardens enhancement, called Arroyo Adventure coming in the Spring of 2016. Come make music with us in November!
Photo by: Jennifer Roper Photography