SISTERS, Ore. (KTVZ) — The first Sisters Folk Festival Bluegrass Jam Camp is scheduled to take place June 23-26, outdoors at the Sisters Art Works site in Sisters.
The dynamic 4-day program will focus on musicality and collaboration through ensemble practice and performances on traditional bluegrass instruments of guitar, mandolin, fiddle, banjo and bass. Topics will also include music theory, song arrangement, singing, and harmony. Jam campers will learn collaboration and performance techniques, culminating in a final concert by camp participants that will be open to the public.
The camp is for intermediate level musicians aged 18 and over. Because the emphasis is on bluegrass, campers will learn the style and techniques unique to this genre, as well as how to play successfully with others informally or in a group setting. The days will be “busy” (pun intended), but there will be plenty of time to have fun and socialize with other musicians.
Bluegrass Jam Camp instructors are members of the Colorado-based professional bluegrass band FY5, led by award-winning songwriter Mike Finders and bassist Erin Youngberg, along with guest instructor Eli West. FY5 has developed and run several other educational bluegrass camps, including the Pagosa Folk N’ Bluegrass Festival in Colorado and Ghost Ranch in New Mexico. The popular band performed at the 2019 Sisters Folk Festival. Eli West is a singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist from Seattle and a former performer at the Sisters Folk Festival and other SFF events over the years. West has also taught at numerous music camps across the country.
The Sisters Folk Festival has adopted a ‘pay what you can’ model for this opportunity to ensure that no one is prevented from attending solely for financial reasons. The suggested entry fee is $395, but attendees have the option to select a payment level that suits them upon checkout. As the organization focuses on equity and inclusion, this fee structure represents an effort to increase accessibility to arts education for all, regardless of financial means. Participants who are able can choose to “pay it forward” to help others.
Bluegrass Jam Camp registration will be limited to approximately 30 attendees for 2022 and is already over a third full. A limited number of on-site campsites are available and many other accommodation options are available in and around the town of Sisters.
Sisters Folk Festival is a year-round non-profit organization that strengthens community and transforms lives through music and art.