SASKATOON – Nineteen women fulfilled their rock star dream this weekend in Saskatoon at the inaugural Girls Rock Camp: Grown Up.
“I had always wanted to learn drums, but had never had the resources or the space for a drum kit so this was a great opportunity to get some lessons and also get to bang on a set of drums,” said Deadly Viper Assassins drummer Nikki Barrington.
The camp was open to any adult women who want to learn a new instrument and collaborate with a band.
“You’re going to be terrible at first and then great at the end and it’s going to be awesome,” said Burning Questions drummer Savhanna Wilson.
The three day crash course taught much more than just music lessons.
“It gave me a lot of skills for my own life, outside of just this weekend,” said Wilson.
“It really encouraged me to step up and not be so nervous to put myself out there.”
“I think the biggest pro is the surprising affects of music they weren’t anticipating. You know the additional confidence and the feeling ‘I can do this, I can do anything,'” said programming committee member Brenda Jackson.
Participants say the weekend was transformative; it was a time to break down boundaries, fears and stress.
“I’m an introvert but I met a lot of really cool people and really came out of my shell,” said Barrington.
“It’s OK to not be perfect, and some of the best moments are the vulnerable moments.”
The idea sprouted from the original Girls Rock Camp, which takes place in the summer for girls ages eight to 16. But with strong demand from parents and volunteers, organizers decided to hold an adult version.
“You think about people at home that say ‘I wish I was in a band’, maybe their whole life they’ve been wishing that and don’t know where to start, don’t know where to begin, and don’t know other people who have the same desires. Here they meet everybody,” said Jackson.
No matter the age, organizers want participants to walk away with one message.
“Don’t underestimate yourself and what you can do,” said Jackson.