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Using Carnival Themes in Youth Music Workshops

Saturday 7 March 2020

12:00pm - 5:00pm

School of Oriental and African Studies, WC1H 0XG

Xi-mali Kadeena-Guscoth and Femi Oriogun-Williams (Pumpkin Jigsaw)


Carnival in Rio de Janeiro is inherently communal. Each year the many excited participants of a carnival group band together to form a story that represents their group and current issues that they would like to represent. Be it history, community, technology, playfulness, or anything they think they can provide to the world. The members of a carnival group will form songs together and share ideas and music in a way that they can present it to the communities around them and celebrate their group.

Through case studies and practical activities this workshop will focus on methods used in creating carnival performances and how we adapted them to work with young migrants and refugees in London. Both to encourage music sharing and also to allow the sharing of ideas and internal knowledge between participants. The workshop will also explore how to use themes such as community sharing, storytelling and movement in music for communities. And how we can use these to teach music in a way that is firmly situated within the participants’ experiences.  

We hope those attending will take away practical ideas and strategies that they can apply and use in their own practice. 

This session is for music practitioners and educators looking to learn more about community and carnival approaches to music and how we can use music workshops to bond communities. Although this is centered around teaching music you will not need practical knowledge of carnival music or any other types as we will cover the necessary information in the workshop.

This is one of Sound Connections’ Community-Led training sessions, where practitioners in their communities will be sharing their practice, expertise and ideas. Sound Connections are supporting emerging practitioners to devise and deliver training courses, to bring new perspectives on inclusive practice to our network. 

This venue is fully accessible. We are working towards all of our venues being fully accessible, and checking accessibility details with venues is part of our booking process. 

Refreshments will be provided.

Wear comfortable clothing, drums will be provided! 


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Xi-mali Kadeena-Guscoth

Xi-mali Kadeena-Guscoth is the founder and director of Pumpkin Jigsaw, a collaborative and interdisciplinary initiative aiming to merge samba batucada and Afro-Brazilian carnival rhythms in London spaces. Pumpkin Jigsaw brings technical and diverse rhythms to London communities, creating inclusive and immersive carnival environments. Coming into carnival music from an avant-garde music and theatrical background, Xi-mali sees carnival as a way to create inclusivity while telling visual stories, merging music with theatre and community. He has voraciously studied Brazilian Carnival since he discovered it in 2011. From 2018 Pumpkin Jigsaw was formed as a way to educate and inspire people through carnival themes and music.

Femi Oriogun-Williams

Femi Oriogun-Williams is a multi-instrumentalist who on top of being a project lead for The Beat Exchange has worked musically on operas, theatre shows and as a singer-songwriter. He is also a workshop facilitator, has created choir and drama groups in France and has been a Youth Voice Facilitator for Sound Connections on a range of projects that nurture inclusion and accessibility.


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Support our work with London's young music makers. Donate Now