Girls are being encouraged to gatecrash the local music scene thanks to a new summer camp, set to launch later this month.
Rock Camp for Girls, an in-depth, five-day course, is aimed at girls aged seven to 17. Anyone harbouring a ‘Teenage Dream’ to be the next Katy Perry will be given the chance to pick up an instrument, form a band, write a song and also learn a cover version at the In The Mix Studios event from August 25-29.
They’ll pick up some top tips from the regional music scene’s leading figures, including Noush Like Sploosh, Fatiniza, drummer Francy Tarboda and Carla Saad. Radio presenter and alternative music guru Zahra Soar, co-founder of the camp, alongside Rasha Omar of Middle East music site triplew.me, explained: “I read a book about a group of ladies from Portland, Oregon who set up a camp for girls, and I was so inspired I got in touch with Rasha. She receives demos and albums from musicians all the time, but very rarely from female musicians. There’s a definite lack of female musical talent. Although I’ve had more than 200 musicians as guests on my radio show over the years, I can count on one hand the number that were women.”
The budding rockers, who will opt to play drums, guitar, bass or sing, have much more to look forward to than just a five-day ‘jam session’. All the bands will play at a camp-closing concert, recorded live by Abu Dhabi production company White Cube. Also, through workshops, they’ll learn about DIY solo recording, promotion, marketing and much more in terms of practical problems that bands come up against in the 21st century.
Zara, who admits she might be tempted to pick up the bass herself during one of the jam sessions, adds: “This is not just a music camp. This is a not-for-profit mentoring programme that will empower girls and galvanise them into action. If a student graduates from Rock Camp for Girls with greater confidence to perform, and wants to form her own band, then we’ve done our job.”
Places are limited. For more information on the camp, which runs from August 25-29, check the ‘RockCampforGirlsUAE’ facebook page or email firstname.lastname@example.org