Kids have the chance to become recording artists in just five days.
The West End Cultural Centre is putting on its first Play and Record program, a five-day music camp (July 29 to Aug. 2) in which about 15 kids will write, play, and record their own music.
The Winnipeg Foundation provided the WECC with a grant of $10,000 for this program, so instrument rentals, snacks, and lunches are free of charge for participants.
Divided up into three bands, these participants will learn from two artistic coaches, David Guillas of Propagandhi fame and Winnipeg-based performer Lindsey White.
Community outreach and volunteer co-ordinator Jessica Dressler said this specific program is mainly targeted at youth with a musical background.
"It’s in such a compressed time — we’re going to be writing and recording songs, so it wouldn’t be the greatest for somebody who has no experience," Dressler said.
Five days doesn’t seem like a lot of time to put together a whole song, but Guillas advises participants to simply relax.
"I think the tip would be to not censor yourself too soon," Guillas said.
"That’s the biggest roadblock for a lot of people, not just with music but with any type of creativity: to immediately think their work isn’t good. But I would like the kids to be brave and just try it."
Guillas said the kids are there to learn, not to create a masterpiece.
"A big goal of the program is to demystify the process of being in a band and writing a song," Guillas said. "We’ll just keep it real simple and show the kids you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. You can write something simple and make it powerful."
Dressler said the first three days will consist of everyone getting to know each other, playing music, and forming their bands. Judging by the registration forms so far, Dressler can see the bands naturally forming based on the kids’ musical experience and interests.
"Some of them like pop, some of them like heavier stuff. It’s going to be interesting to see what those creative minds will come up with in a few days," Dressler said.
The participants are expected to spend the last two days of the program recording their songs.
If there isn’t enough time to squeeze everyone in, Dressler said there’s the possibility of running the program one more day.
For more information, call 204-783-6918.