Summer music activities offered by Western Kansas String Academy

The Western Kansas String Academy is offering several activities for current and future string players this summer on the campus of Fort Hays State University.

The following classes and ensembles are open to violin, viola, cello and string bass players of various ages and abilities throughout the region.

-- Alternative Strings Summer Jam '07 -- Students are invited to rosin up their bows and dive into the world of non-classical music for string players. Four different 10-week classes -- Traditional Fiddling, Renaissance, Rock, and Barrage-style fiddling -- will be offered on Friday mornings throughout the summer. Students will also have the chance to experiment with alternative instruments including electric strings, mandolins, recorders and drums. The program includes three local community performances: at Semolino’s on June 29, at Hays Aquatic Park on July 27 and at the Hays Gallery Walk on Aug. 24. The Renaissance class is invited to perform at the Kansas City Renaissance Festival in September. Summer Jam is sponsored in part by Yamaha Strings, Midwest Community Energy Fund, Shar Music and Midwest Music Inc. The cost for each class is $40 and includes an Alternative Strings T-shirt. The registration deadline is Friday, May 25 .

-- String Exploration for Beginners, offered June 11-14, from 9 to 9:45 a.m. each morning, is a chance for young children to try out the whole string family. Each day, instructors from the Western Kansas String Academy will lead a group lesson for beginners on a different instrument: violin, viola, cello and bass. Basics of instrument hold, instrument care and beginning songs will be covered. The program is designed for children who have just finished kindergarten through third grade. All kid-sized instruments are provided courtesy of KC Strings. The class, taught by WKSA staff member Shelly Wolf, is limited to 10 students, and parents are encouraged to attend with their children. Cost for the class is $20; registration deadline is June 5.

-- Beginning Adult Violin Class is offered for adults who have always wanted to play but never had the chance. Participants 18 years or older will explore the violin in a four-week course where they will learn how to hold the instrument properly and begin playing songs. Group classes will meet Monday evenings (June 4, 11, 25, and July 2), from 7 to 8 p.m. and will be supplemented by four half-hour private lessons scheduled independently with the instructor. Violins will be available for loan over the duration of the class on a first-come, first-served basis. This limited enrollment class will be taught by WKSA staff member Lianne Zwenger. The cost of the adult violin class is $35 with a June 1 registration deadline.

Additional information or registration forms for all WKSA summer classes are available by contacting Cathy Drabkin, (785) 623-4187 or; Shelly Wolf, (785) 623-9742 or; or Lianne Zwenger, (785) 625-6165 or

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Office of University Relations   |  600 Park Street   |  Hays, KS  67601-4099
(785) 628-4206   |   Fax (785) 628-4152
Kent Steward, Director   |  |  Kurt Beyers, Assistant Director   |