Brave Old World Workshops (click)
Harmonia "Music of Eastern Europe" Workshops (click)
Brave Old World Workshops
The members of Brave Old World are recognized internationally as leading teachers of Yiddish culture. Together and individually we offer workshops on the following subjects:
Instrumental (klezmer) music
  • history, theory, composing and arranging, individual and ensemble performance, repertoire
  • instruments including: string, wind, brass, keyboard, percussion
Vocal music
  • history, repertoire, songwriting, performance style
  • history, repertoire, performance style
Our workshops can be individually tailored for almost any group, including elementary through high schools, community centers, university and conservatory students, and professional musicians, and for any length of time, ranging from one hour to one month.

We love working with presenters to create individual workshops! If you would like to discuss a custom workshop, please contact Robin M. Troup. Phone: 800-961-9601 Email:

The members of Brave Old World are active throughout the world as workshop and festival directors and consultants.
  • 14th Jewish Culture Festival in Krakow, Poland , from June 26 - July 4, 2004, featuring a variety of concerts and workshops with members of BOW and others.
    Consultant, Michael Alpert
  • Weimar Klezmer Wochen in Weimar, Germany from July 3 - August 3, 2004, on Yiddish language, instrumental music, vocal music and dance.
    Program director, Alan Bern
  • KlezFest London in London, UK, from August 8-13, 2004, on instrumental, vocal music and dance.
    Program director, Alan Bern
  • KlezKanada in the Laurentian mountains north of Montreal, Canada, from August 24-29, 2004, North America's largest festival and workshop of Yiddish culture.
    Co-directors, Jeff Warschauer and Michael Alpert
  • Accordion Workshop in Tuscany, Italy, September 4 - 11, 2004. Taught by Alan Bern in a simply beautiful surrounding, the language of instruction is German.
(More about Brave Old World)
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Harmonia "Music of Eastern Europe" Workshops
Harmonia offers a variety of residencies and workshops, depending on the audience's interests, level of musicianship, and length of the workshop/residency. Workshops are available for audiences ranging from general audiences to elementary schools to graduate music seminars. Group leader Walt Mahovlich is joined by the other bands members in demonstration and lecture.

These programs have been presented at the Balkan Music and Dance workshop, The National Folk Alliance Conference, The Ohio Music Educators Association, Bismarck Art & Galleries Association, Kent Folk Festival, and the Old Songs Festival in Albany NY.

  1. "Hands on" folk orchestra workshop
    Target audience: Musicians/ music students (instrumental or vocal)
    Level: Intermediate to advanced
    This is a group workshop with musicians in which Harmonia teaches them to play one or more tunes and put together a band playing our Eastern European music. We work both in sections and as a group. Appropriate instrumentalists would include: violin, viola, bass and cello; flute, recorder and clarinet, soprano sax; accordion, hammered dulcimer or cimbalom as well as percussionists. As part of this, one of the Harmonia members, Andrei, can teach the basics of playing tilinca (that's the flute without finger holes that operates on harmonics) and supply several tilincas for student use. We can also supply a few sopilkas (recorder-like folk flutes) and a panpipe for student use during the workshop. For a longer residency (three days or longer), we can also supply up to 3 small sized cimbaloms on which students can learn the fundamentals of the instrument - (additional shipping costs paid by presenter). We typically teach first by ear - which develops a sense of styling - and then supply written notes in the form of a lead sheet and chords. Beata, the group’s female vocalist, can teach one or more songs as part of this kind of workshop, as well.
  2. Lecture/demonstration of East European instruments (formal or informal)
    Target audience: General (level of detail can vary depending on audience)
    Level: Varied
    Harmonia members talk about and demonstrate a variety of East European instruments that we use - 7 different types of folk flutes, cimbalom, tilinca, tarogot, sopilka, etc. Beata discusses, demonstrates and contrasts various types of vocal styles from Eastern Europe as part of this. If appropriate (for Ethnomusicology or acoustics students), we can be very detailed about the techniques and construction of the instruments. This workshop can be offered informally (questions from the audience interspersed with Harmonia’s commentary - for younger or general audiences), or as a more formal classroom lecture.
  3. General lecture-demonstration workshop on East European music.
    Target audience: General audiences to advanced university
    Level: Beginning to advanced
    Harmonia members discuss East European music, instruments, and culture; they will also demonstrate various styles and types of music. The main topics include:
  • Locations of the countries and their cultural/political connections;
  • Instrument construction and performance techniques;
  • Performance experiences in Eastern European countries, with musical selections from each country;
  • Cultural settings of the music growing up in Eastern Europe and among US immigrant populations;
  • Wedding customs (compared and contrasted) in various Eastern European cultures.
(More about Harmonia)
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