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Community drum circle beats stress

Drum Circle6

N. Veerman photo

In a moment of release, 27 people sat in a dark basement, drumming with all their might.

Then, at the ring of a tambourine, the clamour came to an abrupt stop, filling the room with a deafening silence, broken moments later with a collective scream, as each participant embraced the stress relieving powers of a community drum circle.

It was Jasper’s first circle with Lisa Chell, a trained facilitator from Brule who is following her mentor’s vision to bring a community drum circle to every community in Alberta.

So far, Chell has started one in Jasper and in Hinton, both of which she hopes to make monthly events.

Jasper’s next circle is scheduled for March 24.

Along with her capable instruction, Chell brings enough drums and percussion instruments for 25 to 30  people and invites anyone with their own drum to bring it along.

The circle is open to the entire community: people who have drummed in the past and those who have never touched a drum in their lives.

At last week’s circle, only a third of the participants had drummed before, but by the end of the class, each and every person was contributing, adding their own layer of sound to the rhythmic beat.

“There’s no skill level required, just your willingness to be open and have fun, get into it and participate and laugh with each other,” said Chell.

Registration for this month’s circle is at Nutter’s.

Nicole Veerman

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