Where the streets have marimbas

Event lets people try their hand

Youth co-ordinator of Striking Accord

Youth co-ordinator of Striking Accord

The soft echo of Zimbabwean-style marimbas will soon fill the town of Qualicum Beach as the Striking Accord project prepares to plant the instruments all around the town.

“You’ll be able to walk down the street and see all different kinds of people trying the marimbas,” said Fahlon Smith, one of two youth co-ordinators of the project.

The six-day project, organized by the Arrowsmith Community Enhancement Society (ACES) in collaboration with the Town of Qualicum Beach, was inspired by an art project that saw pianos in public spaces in 16 cities around the world. Qualicum’s version will see 14 marimbas — large wooden instruments that resemble xylophones — in seven locations on sidewalks and in public squares for three days — June 21-23 between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. 

The project kicks off June 19 at Coombs Country Market with a Father’s Day concert featuring local marimba groups Jangano Marimba and Kumbana Marimba, the latter of which Smith and her sister Jasmine (the other youth co-ordinator) are members.   

Both groups have 10 players, with Jangano ages 9-13 and Kumbana ages 14-21. After the performance audience members can try their hand at playing the instruments, with guidance. 

Following the three days of marimbas on the street, members of the public (over nine years of age) can sign up for a free workshop, taking place Friday, June 24 in town square for an hour at 11 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Instructors of the workshops will be members of marimba group Afro-Mumanzi, which also includes Fahlon and Jasmine and three other musicians from Vancouver. 

On Saturday, June 25 an informal concert in Town Square will take place at 6:30 p.m. showcasing the new skills of workshop members and those of seniors who have recently completed lessons at the Bradley Centre in Coombs. Jangano Marimba and Kumbana Marimba will also play at this concert.

“Basically all the marimba programs, activities and ensembles are going to be getting together for that date to share their music and show the community what they’ve been working on,” said Smith.

Finally there will be a street dance at Primrose and Second Avenue at 8 p.m. on June 25 featuring the professional marimba bands, including Afro-Mumanzi.

All of the activities over the six days are free, funded by grants from the BC Arts Council and Regional District of Nanaimo, with a stage donation by Kingsley Trucking.

Fahlon said marimbas are a great instrument for any age to try from toddlers right up to seniors. She said she likes the idea of making the instruments accessible to the general public for experimentation and is looking forward to some enthusiastic responses.

“It’s something new we’re going to try and see how it works and I’m excited to see the response from the public,” she said.

 

Just Posted

Tuesday’s Lotto Max draw went unclaimed. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Tuesday’s Lotto Max draw went unclaimed. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lotto Max jackpot goes unclaimed again

42 of the 64 Maxmillion prizes of $1 million were won, the majority were sold in Ontario

A slide on best practices when reporting a suspected impaired driver that was presented to Parksville city council on June 7 by Margarita Bernard, a volunteer with MADD. The organization’s Report Impaired Drivers campaign involves the installation of informative signs within the City of Parksville. (Mandy Moraes photo)
MADD brings campaign to report impaired drivers to Parksville

Aim is to raise awareness that 911 should be called

Pam Bottomley (executive director), right and Sandy Hurley (president) of the Parksville Downtown Business Association visit the PQB News/VI Free Daily studio. (Peter McCully photo)
PQBeat: Downtown Parksville gears up for post-pandemic bounce back

Podcast: Hurley, Bottomley chat about what’s ahead for the PDBA

(Black Press file photo)
RCMP: Air ambulance called to Whiskey Creek after crash involving 2 motorbikes

Both riders taken to hospital with serious injuries

People watch a car burn during a riot following game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup final in downtown Vancouver, B.C., in this June 15, 2011 photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Geoff Howe
10 years ago: Where were you during the 2011 Vancouver Stanley Cup Riots?

Smashed-in storefronts, looting, garbage can fires and overturned cars some of the damage remembered today

Restaurant patrons enjoy the weather on a patio in Vancouver, B.C., on April 5, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Labour shortages, closed borders major obstacles to B.C. restaurant, tourism restarts

Industry expert says it won’t start to recover until international travellers can visit

A still image from security camera video recorded June 8 shows an individual lighting trash on fire in the doorway of 19+ Cannabis Store on Victoria Crescent. RCMP and Nanaimo Fire Rescue are investigating numerous fires set in downtown Nanaimo in the past three months. (Photo submitted)
‘It’s out of control’: More than 20 fires set in downtown Nanaimo in past 3 months

Authorities asking business owners to keep dumpsters locked

(Black Press Media file)
Dirty money: Canadian currency the most germ-filled in the world, survey suggests

Canadian plastic currency was found to contain 209 bacterial cultures

(pixabay file shot)
B.C. ombudsperson labels youth confinement in jail ‘unsafe,’ calls for changes

Review states a maximum of 22 hours for youth, aged 12 from to 17, to be placed in solitary

Eleonore Alamillo-Laberge, 6, reads a book in Ottawa on Monday, June 12, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Parents will need to fight ‘COVID learning slump’ over summer: B.C. literacy experts

Parents who play an active role in educating their children this summer can reverse the slump by nearly 80%, says Janet Mort

The border crossing on Highway 11 in Abbotsford heading south (file)
Western premiers call for clarity, timelines on international travel, reopening rules

Trudeau has called Thursday meeting, premiers say they expect to leave that meeting with a plan

The B.C. government’s vaccine booking website is busy processing second-dose appointments, with more than 76 per cent of adults having received a first dose. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections, hospitalizations stable for Tuesday

108 new confirmed cases, 139 in hospital, 39 in intensive care

Most Read