Beginners dance and drumming course 2024

We’re back! Come and join us!

Wellington Batucada CubaDupa 2024 team photo

After a year’s break for beginners’ dance classes, we’re back with a bang – and so are our annual beginners’ drum classes. We’d love you to join us!

The Sunday afternoon classes will run for 6 weeks, from 21 July to 25 August 2024, at 1pm – 3pm.

The cost is $135 for the course, with a special price of $75 for Batucada members who are keen to learn to dance, learn a new instrument, or refresh their skills.

Drumming classes will take place at the Cook Islands Society Hall, 220 Hanson St, Newtown.

Dance classes will take place at Te Whaea: National Dance & Drama Centre, 11 Hutchison Road, Newtown.

Booking your spot on the 2024 course

We’ve made it super-easy for you to register and pay for a beginners’ course.

DRUMMERS REGISTER HERE: Batucada beginners’ drumming registration form

DANCERS REGISTER HERE: Batucada beginners’ dance registration form

Spaces on our beginners’ courses are usually in high demand, and numbers are limited, so please make sure you are able to attend all of the sessions before signing up.

We already have over 150 people on our “Expressions of interest” spreadsheet this year, including those who’ve been waiting two years to come to our dance classes – so we know demand is going to be super-high for 2024. Get in quick so you don’t miss out!

We’ll be in touch with more info once you’ve registered. If you can pay for your spot on the course as soon as possible, that would be great. Thanks!

More info about the courses can be found on our Join page

Come fly a flag at CubaDupa with Wellington Batucada

Be a part of our stage show and parade with a Batucada flag

Flags blowing in the wind

Ever since the first CubaDupa back in 2015, we’ve thought about how great it would be to fill the streets of central Wellington with flags and bunting during the festival. Looking up to see colourful fabric flying in the breeze, silhouetted against the blue sky, can give your spirits such a lift – and you see flags and bunting all over the place at CubaDupa these days.

We want to add to the fun, with our own Wellington Batucada flags, carried (and enthusiastically waved) by our audience at our Sunday afternoon Swan Stage show, and the street parade afterwards.

Our dancers and drummers fill the stage with colour and sound, and we think there’s a wonderful space above the heads of our audience that we can fill with flags. A bit like Glastonbury, but on a much smaller scale 🙂

We also think you’ll look amazing following behind our street parade, dancing with us and waving your flags high in the air.

Collect your flag from Thistle Hall (cnr of Cuba & Arthur St) on Sunday 23rd March at 1.30pm

You can then either accompany the band on our back-streets meander down to Ngā Taniwha Swan Stage, ready for our stage show at 2.30pm, or you can race ahead of us with your flag in hand, to get a good spot to watch the show. Enthusiastic flag-waving is strongly encouraged at all times.

After the stage show we’ll be parading from Swan Lane around the block and up to Carnival Central – the Southern Cross on Abel Smith Street.

Wellington Batucada drummers and dancers parade at CubaDupa. Photo by Paul Taylor.

Wellington Batucada drummers and dancers parade at CubaDupa 2021. Photo by Paul Taylor.

Following along behind the dancers and drummers – and part of the spectacle – is all of you with your flags, creating a “fan-tail” as we make our way through the streets of central Wellington. More enthusiastic flag waving, and plenty of on-the-move dancing is again strongly encouraged.

We’re so excited to be able to involve you in our show in this way, and for you to add to the colour and spectacle of a Wellington Batucada performance. We look forward to meeting you when you come to pick up your flags. See you then!

PS we’d love to get the flags back from you after the parade, so that we can re-use them again sometime. Thank you!

Beginners dance and drumming course 2022

We know heaps of you have already expressed an interest… so come and join us!

Batucada Beginners' Workshops 2022Come and learn to drum and dance alongside members of Wellington Batucada. Sign up for the 2022 Beginners classes now!

The Sunday afternoon classes will run for 6 weeks, from 24 July to 28 August 2022, 1pm – 3pm.

The cost is $120 for the course. There’s also a special price of $60 for Batucada members who are keen to learn a new instrument or refresh your skills.

Drumming classes will take place at the Cook Islands Society Hall, 220 Hanson St, Newtown.

Dance classes will take place at Te Whaea National Dance & Drama Centre, 11 Hutchison Road, Newtown (note new venue to accommodate more dancers).

Booking your spot on the 2022 course

UPDATE 06/07/22: The 2022 drumming beginners’ course is now FULLY SUBSCRIBED

However, as not everyone who registered has paid yet, there may be a small number of places that become available in the next couple of weeks. Please contact us at wellingtonbatucada@gmail.com if you would like to be added to the waiting list for places on the drumming beginners’ course.

There are a few places still available on the dance course

Dancers please fill in the Beginners’ Dance registration form to register.

Once you’ve completed the form, please pay $120 via internet banking to:

Wellington Batucada
38-9012-0348830-00
Reference “Your Name” and “Beginners”

If you have already registered but not yet paid, please make your payment as soon as possible, as we will be releasing any unpaid-for places on the course to people on our waiting list.

More info on our Join page

Wellington Batucada’s 20th Anniversary Party

Save the date and register now!

Batucada in lights at the 2009 Cuba Street Carnival

20th ANNIVERSARY BAT-PARTY

Saturday night, 21 August 2021

Wellington Batucada is commemorating 20 wonderful years this year – we’d love for you to come and celebrate with us!

Fill out the rego form using the link below – we’ll keep you updated with details and then formally invite you to RSVP. (We’ll be sending invites to the registered list only).

Instead of getting together and playing drums, we’re planning an event that focuses on catching up with friends old and new.

There’ll be live entertainment, a cash bar and some kai. We can’t wait to get together again!

Darryn leading the band at the Petone Winter Festival, February 2009 (probably)

Venue: Toitū Pōneke aka The Hub on Kilbirnie Park (that’s next to the Wellington Regional Aquatic Centre)
Date: Saturday 21 August 2021, 6:00pm-2:00am
Entry: Free

Tim leading the band at Te Papa's 10th birthday celebrations

What you need to do

  1. Register here to join our 20th anniversary database
    We’ll be sending invites to the registered list only. Make sure you don’t miss this step if you’re keen to come along.
  2. Share this blog post with ex-members you know – ask them to do the same
    Help us reach everyone by sharing the news with any Bat-friends you know – especially those from waaay back. Please don’t just send us names, ‘cos if you don’t know their email address, chances are we don’t either 🙂

Hope to see you in August!

Ngā mihi
Directors and Committee
Wellington Batucada
New Zealand

Team photo at the 2011 Rugby World Cup - Australia vs South Africa

Beginners dance and drumming course 2021

We know you’ve been waiting a long time for this… so come and join us!

Beginners dance and drumming course 2021Come and learn to drum and dance alongside members of Wellington Batucada. Sign up for the 2021 Beginners workshops now!

The Sunday afternoon workshops will run for 6 weeks, from 9 May to 13 June 2021, 1pm – 3pm.

The cost is $120 for the course. There’s also a special price of $25 for Batucada members who are keen to learn a new instrument or refresh your skills.

Drumming Workshops will take place at Cook Islands Society Hall, 220 Hanson St, Newtown (see map).

Dance Workshops will take place at the Te Whaea National Dance & Drama Centre. NOTE THIS IS A CHANGE OF VENUE to accommodate more dancers. For the 6 June session, we will meet at Wellington Pipe Band Hall, Corner of Hanson St, Newtown (see map).

Booking your spot on the 2021 course

To sign up, please fill in this form.

Once you’ve completed the form, please pay $120 via internet banking to:

Wellington Batucada
38-9012-0348830-00
Reference “Your Name” and “Beginners”

We may need to limit numbers this year, so please sign up ASAP to ensure a spot!

More info here

Cubasonic: a mass musical disruption coming to the capital

The biggest mass performance we’ve ever done!

Batucada dancers at CubaDupa 2018

Wellington Batucada is absolutely thrilled to have been invited by Wellington composer John Psathas to take part in Cubasonic – his original score for over 500 musicians written especially for this year’s CubaDupa.

We’ve been learning and rehearsing our part in this epic piece since November and we’re really excited to be involved. The score is nothing like anything we’ve ever played before, which makes it fascinating and an excellent challenge to get our heads around.

John Psathas and CubaDupa director Gerry Paul were interviewed on Radio New Zealand this week. Have a listen and get excited about what’s to come – it’s gonna be huge!

Cubasonic: a mass musical disruption coming to the capital

A mass musical disruption is coming to the Capital as part of the CubaDupa festival next month.

500 muscians will line Cuba Street from one end to the other and perform an original score by Wellington composer John Psathas.

Add in a sound system across multiple city blocks and a locally-invented Tesla coil that can be played like a keyboard and shoots lightning into its surrounding and you’ve got Cubasonic.

Lynn’s guests are John Psathas and CubaDupa director Gerry Paul. CubaDupa is on March 28 and 29 in Wellington.
RNZ, Nine To Noon, 7 February 2020

Beginners dance and drumming course 2019

Come and join us!

Beginners dance and drumming course 2019Come and learn to drum and dance alongside members of Wellington Batucada. Sign up for the Beginners courses now for 2019.

Dates have been confirmed for 3 x two-hour workshops to be run every second Sunday for both Dancers and Drummers on the following dates: 11th & 25th August and 8 September.

Dancers will be in the Pipe Band Hall and the Drummers up at the Cook Island Society Hall. On the alternate Sunday beginners will be invited to visit band practice and watch.

Cost of workshops to beginners will be $60 for all 3 x two-hour sessions, to be paid up front. There’s also a special price of $25 for current Batucada members.

Sign up here!

Batucada beginners’ dance course starts 5 August 2018

Who’d like a piece of the Samba action?

Arawhetu and Hillary lead the dancers at Newtown Fair 2018 - photo by Paul Taylor

Our next Batucada beginners’ dance course begins 5 August 2018.

You will get to dance alongside members of Wellington Batucada while our Dance Directors teach choreography from our Samba repertoire. No dance experience required and everyone is welcome (all genders).

The cost for the beginners’ course is $80 for 6 weeks. Or you can pay $20 per individual session.

Dance course dates

Venue: Thistle Hall, 293 Cuba St, Te Aro Wellington.

Our beginners’ dance classes will be held every Sunday for 6 weeks, in two 3-week blocks. Classes run from 1pm to 3pm as follows:

Week Date Time Venue
Week 1 Sunday 5 August 1-3pm Thistle Hall
Week 2 Sunday 12 August 1-3pm Thistle Hall
Week 3 Sunday 19 August 1-3pm Thistle Hall
NO CLASS Sunday 26 August NO CLASS
Week 4 Sunday 2 September 1-3pm Thistle Hall
Week 5 Sunday 9 September 1-3pm Thistle Hall
Week 6 Sunday 16 September 1-3pm Thistle Hall

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Batucada beginners’ drumming course starts 10 June 2018

Learn samba drumming with Wellington Batucada!

Tamborims and agogos onstage at CubaDupa 2018

Once a year we run an 8-week block of beginners’ drumming classes. These are held on Sundays from 1pm to 3pm, before our regular band practice.

Our next Batucada beginners’ drumming course begins 10 June 2018.

Overview of the course

This is an opportunity learn the basic techniques and patterns on a number of instruments and cover the rhythms of Brazil including samba, samba reggae and merengue. You will be guided by our directors Darryn Sigley and Tim Cooke into the wonderful world of samba, and we aim to have at least one experienced Batucada member supervising each section so that whatever instrument you’re playing, there’s someone there to help you.

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Batucada beginners’ dance course starts 27 August 2017

Learn to dance samba with Wellington Batucada!

Newtown Fair 2016

Our next Batucada beginners’ dance course begins 27 August 2017.

Dance course dates

Our beginners’ dance classes will be held every Sunday for 6 weeks from 2pm to 4pm as follows:

Week Date Time Venue
Week 1 Sunday 27 August 2-4pm Thistle Hall
Week 2 Sunday 3 September 2-4pm Thistle Hall
Week 3 Sunday 10 September 2-4pm Thistle Hall
NO CLASS Sunday 17 September The band will be away at the Hastings Blossom Festival
Week 4 Sunday 24 September 2-4pm Whitireia Performing Arts Centre – Studio 1 on Level 2
Week 5 Sunday 1 October 2-4pm Whitireia Performing Arts Centre – Studio 1 on Level 2
Week 6 Sunday 8 October 2-4pm Whitireia Performing Arts Centre – Studio 1 on Level 2

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