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Earth Beats hand drumming coming to South Mountain Middle

Language of rhythm is a means to connect for Allentown students

Hand drumming classes at South Mountain Middle School kick back into action on Oct. 4 with Earth Beats. The Urban Arts Center has sponsored classes at the school since 2008.

The Urban Arts Center, a subsidiary of Youth Education in the Arts, is proud to announce its latest program for youth in the Lehigh Valley, Earth Beats.  This program’s inaugural season will take place at South Mountain Middle School starting on Monday, Oct. 4 at 3:15 – 4:15 p.m.     

The program is focused on students who have an interest in music and is an opportunity for students to find a unique musical expression outside traditional school programs.  The language of rhythm echoes through many parts of society in drum circles, drum corps, music classes, bands and parades.  Hand drumming is a means to connect, to be creative and to synergize with an ensemble of fellow young music enthusiast.    

Earth Beats will teach students through observation, listening and memorization through repetition, rather than traditional music notation.  The common factor is music through the pulse of a heart beat. The program will center on Latin, Brazilian, and West African rhythms. These new found skills will culminate in shows at South Mountain Middle School offering excitement that only a performance-oriented program can create.  

The program comes to South Mountain through collaboration with Community Partners for Student Success, or COMPASS, a program of the United Way of the Greater Lehigh Valley. The partnership of three years brings hand drumming into Allentown schools to expose students to the benefits of music and percussion, and to help create a thriving community gathering place after school hours.  

Earth Beats will be facilitated by Moe Jerant who is not a stranger.  Moe has facilitated a drum circle at South Mountain Middle School for two years.   

About Moe Jerant:
Maureen Jerant is a trained drum circle facilitator and long-time percussionist and educator. From the Lehigh Valley area, 'Moe,’ brings to the class years of percussion and hand drumming experience, both locally and nationally. She is the founder of the Stressbuster Drum Circle and conducts private and group music lessons, plays with two musical groups and directs performances by the Jamani Drummers and the Lehigh Valley Drum Circle Ensemble. Jerant holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Music and is a trained Remo HealthRhythms facilitator.

For more information on Earth Beats, contact Eric Kitchenman at eric@yea.org, or by telephone at (610) 821-0345, Ext. 124.

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