By Andy Doerschuk Published September 19, 2009
The KoSA International Percussion Workshop And Festival held its annual drum camp on July 30–August 2 at a spectacular new venue: the KoSA Centre des Arts (KoSA Center For The Arts), located in Montreal, Canada.
KoSA is the brainchild of Montreal percussionist Aldo Mazza, of the world-renown ensemble Répercussion. It has been a 14-year dream of Mazza ’s to house the KoSA Academy — a year-round world-music centre and music school in Montreal — in a venue that would incorporate not only a fully-equipped facility for a music school, but also a mid-size concert hall with state-of-the-art acoustics and lighting. KoSA 14 was a perfect way to inaugurate this new space, and the annual event certainly did not disappoint its loyal participants.
Participants were introduced to different drum and percussion styles in masterclasses, received hands-on instruction during daily workshops, and were coached by their idols with our resident rhythm section in the KoSA rhythm section labs. The KoSA faculty also treated participants and the public to three spectacular evening concerts. And nightly jam sessions, a KoSA tradition, were expanded into a Sunday evening wind-down jam with faculty, participants, and house rhythm section members John Roney on piano and Morgan Moore on bass at Montreal’s premier jazz club, Upstairs Jazz Bar & Grill.
Artists at this year’s KoSA included Memo Acevedo (Tito Puente), Pierre Beluse (Montreal Symphony Orchestra), Anne-Julie Caron (Classical marimba soloist), Ndugu Chancler (Michael Jackson), Mario DeCiutiis (Radio City Music Hall), Kenwood Dennard (Sting, George Benson), Dom Famularo (Global Drum Ambassador), Aldo Mazza (Repercussion), Allan Molnar (Nelly Furtado), Giraldo Piloto (Klimax), Walfredo Reyes Jr. (Santana, Lionel Ritchie), Jim Royle (Steel Pan Master), Repercussion, Dave Samuels (Spyro Gyra, Caribbean Jazz Project), Trichy Sankaran (South Indian Master), Glen Velez (Paul Winter Consort) and Michael Wimberly (West African Drumming).