What's My Level???
- BEGINNERS - A beginner doesn't know anything about the instrument and this might even be your first instrument ever. You still will need a useable instrument for the workshop (or you can rent one). If you have decent music background on other instruments, you might want to move straight into a Beginners 2 class, if offered (try and learn the basic scale patterns from a book or teacher before you come in this situation).
*Special Note for people considering bringing hand-made or antique instruments - If you are providing your own dulcimer, it MUST be in playing condition with both bridges set up and strung up. If you have built it yourself, you must check ahead of time to make sure the bridge on the left is correctly set. Contact House of Musical Traditions, Nick Blanton or any builder in advance to get help setting up your instrument. Do not to come to the workshop with an antique dulcimer or a half-made one and expect the teacher to have time to set you up. Help with tuning however, is provided
- ADVANCED BEGINNERS
- know basic scale patterns and a few tunes,
- should be able to tune your dulcimer by yourself,
- know the names of all the marked courses and maybe have musical knowledge on other instruments.
The next step after beginner. At this level, the tunes get harder, but the teacher still helps extensively with hammering patterns. Moving into chord patterns and harmonies, this level applies to many players who can play a little, but still need a lot of help working things out.
- does not need help with basic hammering,
- knows some basic chords (D, G, C, A)
- has familiarity with many if not most of the note names on the instrument,
- can learn tunes by ear and/or by written music.
- can play some tunes up to tempo
- has started playing and creating some arrangements of tunes.
- can learn tunes by ear and by written music
- is interested in delving deeper into a style of music and musicality
- can find all the basic major and minor chords on the instrument
If you are an intermediate level or higher you are ready to start learning chromatics, chordal accompaniment, separate hands and your own arranging.