Rhythm In Your Bones is a workshop series that has been developed by Tony Lewis, over many years of working with people of all ages, cultural backgrounds and levels of skill.
Tony works on the notion that the greatest challenges of rhythmic cognisance are not challenges of physical technique, but challenges of the mind. The workshop process first examines and deconstructs exactly what rhythm is, what it does, and how all sorts of people use basic rhythmic functions in their everyday lives, often unaware that they are even doing it.
In the process we explore how one's perception of a rhythm can change, without any actual change to the rhythm itself, simply by introducing some other external factor, or a change of context.
We then explore how different cultures all over the world use rhythm in their music and dance, in a fascinating variety of ways. This material is always used with the greatest respect to the cultures concerned, and is drawn from Tony Lewis's extensive travels, projects and studies in West Africa, Southern Africa, Indonesia, South Korea, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, many other Pacific Islands, and indigenous communities all over Australia.
Rhythm In Your Bones has participants embodying different rhythmic constructions through stepping, clapping and vocal exercises. The exercises can then move to drums and percussion instruments, but can also work entirely without these, if for any reason no instruments are available.
Rhythm In Your Bones is suitable for all people of all ages, cultural backgrounds, and skills levels. Past workshop participants have included people aged from 12 to 80, school children, tertiary students, Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander youth, people with cerebral palsy and other physical challenges, and professional musicians, dancers and actors. While appropriate for everybody, Rhythm In Your Bones has proven particularly enlightening and valuable to professionals in music, dance and theatre, who wish to develop their rhythmic sense and understanding for professional reasons.
A workshop series can be structured to cater for a new group of participants in each session, or can be additive, building upon material with the same group of participants over a number of sessions, or it can work anywhere between the two.
Tony Lewis is based in Sydney, Australia, but can conduct these workshops anywhere, subject to logistics.