Dan Parker, former chorister of the Orchestre symphonique de Québec, has sung at many events in the independent music scene since his arrival in Quebec in 2007. Dan combines music, popular education and social justice as a co-founder and facilitator of the Chorale du peuple. He currently receives a grant from Engrenage Noir for a community activist art project with the Association pour la défense des droits sociaux in Hochelaga. Trained by renowned vocal improviser Rhiannon, he regularly gives vocal improv workshops to high school students and adults. Dan’s artistic approach is based on his studies and professional experience in education, his ability to reinvent well-known songs with informative lyrics and his mastery of vocal improvisation.
In his vocal workshops, Dan Parker aims to create a space where all participants can express their emotions and their perspectives while still listening to one another. Dan facilitates spontaneous collective soundscapes with ease, encouraging singers with various levels of ability. This former high school teacher also developed his freestyle approach when he improvised raps about Quebec history with his students. He believes that song writing helps students better understand their scholastic subjects, their personal experiences and their positions on local and global issues. This vocal educator is also convinced that improvisational singing makes for better listeners and communicators.
Other examples of activities
Elementary (Grades 5, 6)
Secondary (I, II, III, IV, V)
Special education (secondary)
Rapping across the curriculum
Workshop objective: give students the opportunity to create raps on a topic proposed by the teacher. Dan begins his workshop with a rap performance that addresses the selected topic. Students are invited to repeat certain rhythmic phrases in order to familiarize themselves with some basic hip-hop styles and intonations. The students then get together in small groups and brainstorm on a specific aspect of the teacher’s chosen topic that they will explore with raps. The participants receive a list of easy and multifunctional rhymes, and Dan spontaneously shows how to use the words to make broad statements. After the students have silently and individually written their rhymes, they pair up and help each other improve their raps. Once the text is finalized, the students recite their raps to the whole class. Dan gives his suggestions so that they may further explore their phrasing and rhythms. The performance can be filmed and shared online if the teacher and the students wish. This workshop addresses the cross-curricular competencies of creativity and communication for secondary school students. However, elementary school students are also capable of creating simpler and shorter raps at their own pace and rhythm
Elementary (Grades 3, 4, 5, 6)
Special education (preschool and elementary)
Secondary (Secondary I, II, III, IV, V)
Special education (secondary)
Remix the lyrics
Workshop objective: give students the opportunity to transform the lyrics of popular songs in order to address the teacher’s proposed topic. Using his experience as a lyricist for the Chorale du Peuple, Dan starts the workshop by performing a song spoof that addresses the teacher’s selected topic. Students then repeat certain melodic phrases. The students will get together in small groups and brainstorm on a specific aspect of the chosen topic that they will explore. Certain terms and concepts may be suggested by Dan or the teacher. Using the blackboard, Dan shows the class some simple strategies for replacing the lyrics of a well-known song with an entirely different topic. Each group then picks a simple tune that they can all easily sing and remix its lyrics to focus on the selected topic. The session ends with each group presenting their song to the class. The performances can be filmed and shared online if the teachers and the students wish. This workshop addresses the cross-curricular competencies of creativity and communication for secondary school students. However, elementary school students are also capable of creating simpler and shorter songs at their own pace and rhythm.
Phone : 438 876-6812
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Special education (preschool and elementary), Special education (secondary), Primary 3, Primary 4, Primary 5, Primary 6, Secondary 1, Secondary 2, Secondary 3, Secondary 4, Secondary 5
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