Body Music Intensive With Keith Terry

Keith Terry is a percussionist/rhythm dancer whose work encompasses a number of allied performance disciplines — music, dance, theater, performance art — which he brings together to create an artistic vision that defies easy categorization. As a self-defined “Body Musician,” Keith uses the oldest musical instrument in the world — the human body (his own) — as the basis for exploring, blending and bending traditional and contemporary rhythmic, percussive and movement possibilities.


BODY MUSIC, also known as Body Percussion and Body Drumming, is the oldest music on the planet.  Before people were hollowing logs and slapping rocks, they were using their bodies to stomp, clap, sing, snap and grunt their musical ideas. There are many traditional Body Musics in the world, from African-American Hambone and Flamenco Palmas to Sumatran Saman and Ethiopian Armpit music.  Since 1978 Keith Terry has developed a contemporary style of Body Music based on his training as a jazz drummer, as well as his years of intensive study and collaboration with world rhythmic systems.


Using the oldest instrument on the planet — the human body — we clap, slap, snap, step and vocalize our way through some very fun and funky, original and traditional rhythmic music. BODY MUSIC is an effective way of internalizing rhythmic work, which enhances the development of time, timing, phrasing, listening skills, independence, coordination and ensemble awareness.  It is a useful tool for musicians, dancers and movers of all kinds, actors, DJs and film editors — anyone interested in deepening their rhythmic skills.


The Body Tjak Project is an on-going, long-term US/Indonesian collaboration produced by Crosspulse. In 1980 Keith Terry and I Wayan Dibia began developing a contemporary hybrid form that integrates body music and kecak. Body music explores rhythm while playing the sounds the body can make via clapping of hands, rubbing of palms, finger-pops, feet stamps, singing, slapping the butt and belly, popping the cheek, whomping the chest, skipping and sliding, babbling and coughing.

Kecak (sometimes called Monkey Chant in the west) was originally a part of Bali’s “sanghyang” trance dance, and is commonly used to depict the story of the monkey army in the Hindu epic, the Ramayana. Its high-energy, interlocking vocal patterns, ranging from primordial animal gutturals to ethereal melodies of exquisite beauty and sophistication, have inspired some of Bali’s most innovative contemporary choreography. Terry and Dibia weave body music and kecak through their imaginations, combining and extending these contemporary and traditional forms into a new artistic expression that blends, bends and stretches aesthetic sensibilities. This is the foundation for the work, which in its fullest expression includes percussive and melodic instruments, shadow puppetry, masks, dance and more.

Body Tjak is coming to Escola Luthier de Dansa…

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