Village Harmony

Village Harmony 30th Anniversary Reunion Camp, August 26-September 2, 2019

Date: August 26-September 2, 2019
Venue: Windridge Camp
Leaders: Larry Gordon, Suzannah Park, Bongani Magatyana, Samira Merdzanic
Price: $800/$700 for high school students

If you feel that our four-day 30th Anniversary Weekend (Friday, August 30 – Monday, September 2, 2019) will leave you hungering after more time with old friends in reminiscence and song, then by all means plan to COME EARLY and join us at our 30th Anniversary Reunion Alumni Camp.

Village Harmony’s 30th Anniversary Reunion Camp will be open to all alumni, of all ages—any singer who has ever participated in a Village Harmony camp or workshop. We highly encourage alums to reach out to their old friends to reunite during this week!

The 7-day long program will begin the afternoon of the Monday before our anniversary weekend and will finish with the end of the celebrations on Labor Day Monday. We will start the camp with four days of intensive rehearsals to ourselves, as we prepare a concert program for the big reunion weekend.

The program will be led by a stellar, international group of Village Harmony teachers, including: Village Harmony director Larry Gordon; VH alumna and ever-popular teacher Suzannah Park; Bongani Magatyana from South Africa; and Samira Merdzanic from Bosnia. (As we confirm other teachers we will add them to this page.)

We anticipate that this camp will attract quite a large group, so we may decide to divide the group during part of the time to work with the different leaders simultaneously.

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Leaders

Larry Gordon

Village Harmony founder and director LARRY GORDON has been making community music in Vermont since the early 1970s. He founded Village Harmony in 1989, and his patient and relaxed, yet demanding, teaching style and his collaborative approach have shaped the welcoming atmosphere of the Village Harmony community since the beginning. Though his first love was medieval and renaissance music, he is a vital figure in New England shape-note singing, and he is the music editor of the popular Northern Harmony shape-note songbook. Larry is an inspired organizer with an unerring eye for good repertoire and a unique knack of pulling together interesting combinations of singers and letting them shine.  Larry has led Onion River Chorus in Montpelier since the late 1970s, and is well known across the US and internationally for leading stunning periodic ad hoc incarnations of Northern Harmony, a semi-professional tour group made up largely of veteran Village Harmony singers.  Recently he has been devoting increasing time to teaching Balkan folk dancing.

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Suzannah Park

SuzannahVH-2013SUZANNAH PARK comes from a family of three generations of ballad singers, storytellers, and dancers and lives in the North Carolina mountains of her birth. She began teaching at Village Harmony in 2000 after participating as a camper since the age of twelve. Her joyous and intuitive teaching style, born of a lifetime of familiarity with traditional music, makes singers old and young feel at home in the songs that she shares and with each other. Weather she’s teaching American ballads, South African songs and dances or Appalachian clogging, laughter and good times abound. When not on tour with Village Harmony Suzannah can be found singing with the Starry Mountain Singers, leading the Wild Asheville Community Chorus and kicking up her heels with the Green Grass Cloggers. www.suzannahpark.com

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Bongani Magatyana

Bongani_MagatyanaBONGANI MAGATYANA is a professional singer /music director /composer /theatrical producer living in Gugulethu Township in Cape Town, South Africa. He was born in Cape Town in a township called Old Crossroads; his father was a self-taught choir conductor in the Old Apostolic Church. Bongani’s father taught him how to read and write tonic solfa music notation at a very young age, and young Bongani dreamt of becoming a church choir conductor, too. Today he conducts a 120-voice OAC choir himself, as well as a community male choir.  His folk-inspired choral compositions—popular pieces for South Africa’s major choral competitions—are sung by choirs around South Africa and internationally. Currently Bongani teaches at the Zolani Centre in Langa Township, leads an educational musical theatre company, and continues to compose music in a variety of genres, bringing vibrant performances to communities across Cape Town. Bongani has been teaching with Village Harmony in South Africa and the US since 2012.  He is a wonderful dancer as well as singer, and he is particularly adept at communicating the elusive rhythms of South African songs.

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Samira Merdzanic

samiraSAMIRA MERDZANIC was a dynamic co-leader at our 2016 Bosnia camp. She subsequently came to the US to teach at a Village Harmony teen camp during the summer of 2017. Samira teaches accordion and leads many choirs in her home town of Bugojno. Since 1996 she has led an all girls’ choir, Bugojno Vocal Ensemble which focuses on preserving the traditional and sacred vocal traditions of Bosnia and neighboring countries. (Two girls from this choir attended a Village Harmony teen camp in 2009.) She also leads a children’s choir and a choir focusing on Croatian folk and spiritual traditions in Bosnia. Samira is very active in promoting concerts, choir festivals and exchanges throughout Bosnia and the Balkans. At the 2018 Bosnia camp Samira will teach a diverse repertoire of traditional sevdalinka, village songs and sacred songs from all around Bosnia.

 

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Venue

Windridge Camp

Windridge Camp was the site of our Village Harmony 25th Anniversary Reunion weekend in 2014, and it is a marvelous facility.  There are more than a score of rustic dormitory cabins, with adjacent bathhouses, a beautiful large dining hall, two dance pavilions, several other smaller singing spaces, a few private double cabins, a swimming pool, all bordering a state forest with extensive walking trails. Bedding is not normally provided, but bedding sets can be rented from Windridge.