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Arabic Drumming Classes with Master Percussionist, Atif Badria

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by Amy B (subscribe)
Amy Basha is a senior award winning Weekend Notes writer with close to 60,000 article views. She is passionate about life and loves to write about the many amazing experiences in our world.
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Arabic Drumming At Its Finest
The intoxicating rhythm of Arabic drumming followed me as I entered the ground floor of the Redfern Community Centre.

Having always had an interest in belly dancing and Middle Eastern music, I was curious to try out a drumming class in Middle Eastern percussion.

Sydney is very lucky to have Master percussionist Atif Badria, who is now teaching weekly drumming classes with the darbuka at The Redfern Community Centre.

Zeina Issa, the mastermind behind Modern and Classical Arabic Music Group orchestrated Atif's darbuka classes. MACAM has successfully brought phenomal Arabic singers, percussionists and musicians to the Sydney music scene. Like MACAM's Facebook Page to keep up with all things Arabic music happening in Sydney.

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Atif Badria Master Percussionist

Atif is a warm and friendly teacher who is very approachable. He opened the class by telling us that the Darbuka is played throughout the Arabic, North African and Mediterranean world, in Turkey, Greece, Morocco and the Arab countries.

The class was a mix of students of all ages, of all skill levels. For some, it was the first time they'd held a drum, others were at a higher skill level. The energy in the room was very accepting and the students were eager to learn and practice with the darbuka.

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All skill levels and aptitude are in the class

Atif went around to each student and adjusted their hands, making sure they were holding the darbuka correctly and helped them tap out the proper beat.

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Atif assisting a student

Atif said, "You have to feel the timing so you can play with others. You have to focus to play well."

"Relax," he said, "relax and slow down," as he was teaching the complex rhythm of the darbuka.

The class ended on a high note as several of the more advanced drummers, along with Atif, played a complex gorgeous Middle Eastern drum rhythm making music that the rest of us only hope we can aspire to.

Atif says that, "The students are able to reach a high level of playing Middle Eastern percussion and develop a special technique if they are serious about their exercises and practice".

I know I will be back for another darbuka drumming session. The classes are running until the 28th of June.

You can book in for a half of the term or pay by class. Go here to book and learn more about the classes.

Either way it is a fantastic opportunity to learn about the fantastic music and rich cultural heritage of the Middle East.

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A student lost in the wonderful rhythm
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Why? Because Arabic Drumming is Fantastic
When: Tuesdays at 7pm
Where: Redfern Community Centre 29-53 Hugo St, Redfern NSW 2016
Cost: $35 per class or $100 for half term
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