The project “Samspill’’ is a weekend program that gathers youngsters from most of the school bands in the Oslo region. Samspill offers extra music lessons added to the one`s they do on a weekly basis with their school bands. Many Norwegian bands are small in terms of membership and this is an opportunity for the youngsters to get a feeling of how it is to play with a much bigger group of people. Samspill lasts a full weekend and the participants sleep over on the floor at a local school, at the end of theweekend there is a closing concert.
Samspill is organized by NMF Øst in partnership with a local band. Another aim of the project is to help the kids socially by giving the young musicians an opportunity to connect with each other and have fun playing together.
The PULSE team in Norway was given an opportunity to be part of Samspill and the plan was to teach them something African but not using musical instruments. We were excited together with the participants about this challenge. We taught them; feet stamping with clapping, body percussion rhythms accompanied by small rhythmic section consisting of teaspoons, steel plates, djembes, own made shakers with plastic bottles and small stones inside while singing the song called “Ipikoko”. The idea was influenced by methods used in Field Band Foundation, which are commonly used in South African childhood games. The aim was to provide practical training and support on how to form a banding situation that in a very short time accommodates all musicians from different background by not only using musical instruments to create sense of wellbeing, mastering and sense of belonging.
A quote from the student who participated:
- I love Samspill because I get to sit next to my friends who are playing in other bands.
- In samspill we meet and play together, that is why I love Samspill and it is my favourite place to be.
- I like to dance though I am not a dancing person because I don’t have rhythm within me but I really enjoyed dancing with Pulse.
The challenge we encountered at samspill musicians had a long rehearsal before working with Pulse team. We could sense the tiredness through their body language we then introduced an energizer to warm up the musicians and to promote group interaction. Masibulele led the energizer called “ BADU BADA’’ in this game you need to listen and concentrate because each name is linked to an action. The instructor says the name of an action he/she’s doing a different action so you need to concentrate more to the words not actions. The more you get right is the more you feel the sense of mastering. The energizer brought positive energy with big smiles and great enthusiasm to learn.
Pulse team sure had a great weekend working with 144 musicians in the ages of 10 – 18 years old singing, dancing, clapping Africa rhythms. This was our first seminar working together as a team we really had fun and it was nice to be part of the amazing samspill concert, having to hear those kids play was mind blowing.
Writen by: Thulani Dupa and Masibulele Langa
Pictures by: Sizwe Nkosi & Thulani Dupa