The Halifax community music group Samba Nova has existed for more than two decades, but it’s still accepting new members who want to take part.
“I would describe this as a lot of fun hitting stuff with other stuff,” Ian Taylor, musical director of the group, said. “It’s Brazilian Batucada in a Carnival style, so what you’d hear if you went to Carnival in Rio or down in Brazil.”
The band, described on its website as “a registered, not-for-profit society operating as a community musical group,” plays at various events in Halifax.
Tonight on @globalhalifax at 11 p.m.: checking out @SambaNovaHfx’s band practice. #HFX #HFXmusic #GlobalNewsAt11 pic.twitter长沙桑拿/zm3jyP7Da4
— Steve Silva (@SteveCSilva) June 15, 2016
Members primarily use percussion instruments but Taylor said the group likes to “put a little Nova in the samba” by also incorporating bagpipes, fiddles and traditional instruments from Nova Scotia.
Practice is held on Tuesdays between 6-7:30 p.m. in a gym in St. Matthew’s United Church in downtown Halifax. First-timers can participate for free, after that, it costs $5 a week.
About 20 people, including seniors and people in their 20s, attended practice on Tuesday.
“It’s actually much more difficult than I thought it would be when I was watching other people play it. It’s got a very loud sound, so it’s kind of intimidating because you know you’re making a lot of noise,” Kate Kloppenburg said, referencing her instrument a tamborim.
Three practices in, she said she’s enjoying the experience.
“I find the challenge is the pace of the drumming,” Kloppenburg said. “Sometimes … they’re going so fast that you lose track of the beat.”
Instruments are provided at practices and no experience is necessary.
“It’s something that anyone can do, and I think that’s what’s best thing about Samba Nova: It’s so accessible for everyone,” Jessie Smith, another band member, said.