Whilst performing professionally on the Australian and International music scene, Chris Maunders launched his educational harmonica program, Harp’s a Breeze, teaching the next generation that the harmonica is easy to learn and heaps of fun for everyone!
What started as an “in-school” centre of learning, Harp’s a Breeze has now been adapted to offer an online music program for primary school students. It is also offering the program to individual children outside of school, where parents can enrol their children in an “at-home package” – offering them a welcome break from home schooling.
Every student receives their own new ten-hole diatonic harmonica along with learning materials and access to the innovative online harmonica tutorials sealed packs – arriving via Australia Post without leaving their home. In these testing times, students are embracing the opportunity to learn a new instrument, gaining confidence from being able to quickly learn new musical skills.
In addition, Harp’s a Breeze is working in conjunction with Vision Australia and Creative Victoria to develop a completely new Braille system for the harmonica specifically for the Melbourne Recital Centre’s upcoming Sound Matters workshops – ensuring blind and visually impaired children also benefit from the program.
Chris Maunders (Founder and Producer) of Harp’s a Breeze was the first student to graduate with a Bachelor of Fine Arts (Contemporary Music) from the Victorian College of the Arts with his unlikely chosen instrument being the chromatic harmonica. He was also the first chromatic harmonica player in Australian history to complete honours and write his thesis on his favourite instrument, focusing on technique and its teaching methods.
“The kids had such a great time in the harmonica workshops and even better was that they mostly all brought their harmonicas two weeks later to my class and showed how they could play a song. It was brilliant!” – Our Lady of Perpetual Help Primary School
For more information about Harp’s a Breeze and their workshop packages, visit: www.harpsabreeze.com.au for details.
Image: Chris Maunders presenting an online tutorial to a student (supplied)