Best Place to Join a Klezmer Band - 2011
Zambaleta World Music and Dance School
A year and a half ago, ethnomusicologist Mina Girgis opened a space in the Mission to incorporate the spirit of a zambaleta, the Arabic word for a spontaneous street party in his native Cairo. Girgis seeks to tear down what he says is a false distinction between those who are "musical" and not, offering the chance to play in an unlikely slew of world ensembles to musicians of any talent level. True novices can enroll in the musicality clinic, beginning guitar or ukulele classes, or West African drumming. Then there's Appalachian fiddle and the Balkan brass band. The musical travels don't stop there: You can go south to play Andean pan pipes, across the Pacific to learn the didgeridoo, and across the globe again to create Moroccan gnawa. Classes run about $120 for a four-to-eight-week session, or about $25 for a drop-in. Just play.