KoSA 2014 Wraps Up!
19th Annual KoSA Drum & Percussion Camp Delivers
Clear and Straightforward Sentiment:
Castleton, Vermont, USA – The 19th Annual KoSA International Percussion Workshop, Drum Camp and Festival celebrated another memorable week of intensive learning, living and playing with internationally celebrated masters of drums & percussion. Held in the serene Green Mountains of Vermont in late July, KoSA Co-Founders and Directors, Aldo Mazza and Dr. Jolán Kovács relayed a simple message to all attendees with this year’s theme: “I just wanna drum!” The heartfelt and straightforward sentiment expressed to all the urgency to pursue what makes you happy in life and to pursue it to the highest levels of excellence.
“Fulfill your lifelong dream and drum! You will have no regrets and will ultimately will live a happier and more productive life!” Mazza and Kovács advised.
For several days, this is just what the participants did at KoSA 19, morning, noon and night. Regardless of the wide-ranging ages (from as young as 8 to experienced players of 70 years and more), attendees bonded quickly and became supportive members of the KoSA family...each bringing their personal experience from home towns from Nashville, Tennessee to the drumming passions of Montreal, Quebec and even from Milan, Italy to name but a few places participants traveled from. Despite international and geographical differences, KoSA participants all united within a common passion: and this was bountifully expressed throughout the unforgettable week.
Brian Jones, a first-time attendee from New York City, was clearly blown away from his experience as he stated:
“I now have a clear understanding why both Faculty and students [seek to] return every year. The level of instruction surpassed anything I was expecting.”
John Swiess from Illinois—who attended KoSA for the first time as well thanks to the generosity of his wife’s Christmas gift claimed:
“I will never be the same. A life changing event.”
The love of the annual KoSA workshop is not only expressed by the participants but clearly by the Faculty as well! Marcus Santos, KoSA Faculty alumni fittingly summarized this year’s experience:
“KoSA is responsible for the best moments of my life in music and as a person”.
The nightly concerts of the KoSA Music Fesitval were streamed live again this year in collaboration with internet percussion favorite the Drum Channel (www.drumchannel.com). Approximately 20,000+ viewers from around the world witnessed the mind-blowing performances of KoSA’s stellar faculty which included: Robby Ameen (Dizzy Gillespie),Sergio Bellotti (Berklee College), Chris Coleman (Prince), Dominick Cuccia (Fife and Drum Corp Master), Mario DeCiutiis (KAT Electronics founder, Radio City Music Hall Orchestra), Frank Epstein (Boston Symphony Orchestra), Dom Famularo (drumming's Global Ambassador), Richie Gajate Garcia (Phil Collins), Jamey Haddad (Paul Simon), Jojo Mayer (NERVE), Aldo Mazza (Repercussion/KoSA Artistic Director & Founder), Allan Molnar (Nelly Furtado), John Riley (Miles Davis), Marcus Santos (Brazilian master/Berklee College Instructor, Grooversity Founder), Jeff Salisbury (University of Vermont, Author),and Michael Wimberly (NYC Percussionist & West African Drumming Master). The nightly performances also featured smoking hot performances from KoSA’s Master Rhythm Section: Irio O‘Farrill on bass, and Bob Quaranta on piano.
To hear, see and experience the awesome musicality, invention and creativity of these world class, internationally acclaimed percussionists within such an intimate setting was a joy to behold for both participants and members of the Southern Vermont community, who attended the evening festival concert series. New this year was an outdoor concert at Castleton State College's new Pavilion outdoor venue, attended by several hundred members of the surrounding community.
Continuing a long-standing tradition, KoSA awarded “Lifetime Achievement” awards this year to two very deserving members of KoSA's Artist Faculty: the immensely gifted KoSA Faculty alumnus Richie Gajate Garcia, as well as the intellectually intense, ever-inspiring Jojo Mayer, a first-time KoSA Faculty member, who was completely surprised to receive such an accolade. Two newly established awards, KoSA’s “Recognition Award“ were also presented to Jeff Salisbury and Sergio Bellotti in acknowledgement of their tireless efforts in promoting music education and for being dedicated ambassadors of the ongoing KoSA mission.
Finally, the annual KoSA Auction, was a huge success, due to the overwhelming generosity of participants who came away with wonderful, hand signed instruments to benefit KoSA Scholarship programs.
The KoSA World is continuously in expansion with programs not only in USA (New York, Vermont, and Miami), but in Cuba ,Europe and in China. For more information on all things KoSA, visit us here often and at facebook.com/kosamusic