June Music and Dance Week to begin Sunday

Pete “Madcat” Ruth plays during a jam session at a previous Wheatland Music Organization’s Music and Dance Week. Ruth is scheduled to return this year for the fourth annual week of instruction, along with many others who will teach classes in everything from music theory to Irish Celtic guitar playing. (Pioneer file photo)

REMUS — Throughout the area, music enthusiasts are gearing up for a week-long camp aimed at providing lessons in traditional song and dance from a variety of instructors during the fourth annual June Music and Dance Week at Wheatland.

The week, running from Sunday, June 17, to Saturday, June 23, brings nationally and internationally renowned instructors to Remus to teach a little bit of everything, from Cajun a cappella ballads to mandolin playing and more.

“Music and Dance Week is an intensive instruction in various music and dance forms,” said Marilyn Hummel, June Music and Dance Week Committee chairperson.

Hummel noted each of the many classes have a low instructor-to-student ratio, giving camp attendees more one-on-one time with their teachers. Students learn during approximately an hour and a half sessions, beginning with morning classes from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and picking back up after lunch from 1:30 to 6 p.m. Evenings are filled with musical jam sessions, instructor showcases, dances and more, including a fun night full of skits, poems, jokes and other tomfoolery.

Three meals and a nighttime snack are provided so students can focus more on their classes, Hummel said. While registration has closed, there still may be a spot or two available in various classes. Students can call the Wheatland Music Organization office at (989) 967-8879 for late registration. Tuition costs for the classes include the daily meals, onsite camping and hot shower facilities.

Those attending classes are encouraged to bring their yoga mats, dancing shoes and instruments. An onsite luthier will have instruments for rent, located at the east end of the food building, which also will be the home of the repair bench throughout the week. Campers are reminded that in Michigan, June weather can be unpredictable, and are encouraged to bring layers of clothing.

Evening and Saturday activities are open to the public and feature jam sessions, dances and performances. Passes are available for purchase at the information building beginning at 5 p.m. Sunday through Friday. The Last Chance Dance is free and open to the public, beginning from noon and continuing to 2 p.m., Saturday afternoon.

“This week is an educational good time,” Hummel said.

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Posted by Meghan Gunther-Haas

Meghan is the education reporter for the Pioneer and Herald Review. She can be reached at (231) 592-8382 or by email at mhaas@pioneergroup.com.

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