The Rhythmic Arts ProjectPosted on August 16, 2012 by Heartbeat of a Planet

In 1997, drummer Eddie Tuduri suffered a near-fatal surfing accident that left him paralyzed.
Eddie picked up his drumsticks again while still in the hospital and and began tapping on the side of his bed.
Although he could barely hold the drumsticks at first, Eddie grew stronger and other patients on his ward joined in with his drumming.
Miraculously, over the next few months, Eddie as well as many others in his ward achieved significant healing and improvement, through drumming.
This was the beginning of The The Rhythmic Arts Project.

The Rhythmic Arts Project (or TRAP) empowers people with various disabilities to succeed in the world. They integrate drums and percussion instruments as creative learning tools that address life skills and enhance the mind, body and spirit. TRAP is an educational program that uses percussion as a medium to address basic life and learning skills in individuals with developmental disabilities. Beyond that it strives to include this underserved population in our everyday life. TRAP gives them the tools and confidence to succeed in the typical world while teaching the typical world understanding and compassion.

TRAP’s target audience is primarily people with intellectual differences, though they work in typical schools where inclusion is practiced. The project was created to enhance the lives of people with disabilities utilizing rhythm, drums, and other percussion instruments. The Rhythmic Arts Project is not a drum circle. It is a very serious and proven learning curve, having met the standards for education in several states where it facilitates. By integrating drums and percussion into existing teaching methods/modalities, TRAP addresses basic life skills such as turn taking, spatial awareness, kinesthetic awareness, fine and gross motor skills, lateral concepts, prepositional concepts, adding/subtracting, times tables, focus, memory and visual and auditory perceptions. Teaching occurs in an environment that is fun and non-threatening so participants develop improved confidence and a more positive self-image. Drums transcend normal logic; the inherent healing and positive qualities have been documented in indigenous populations since the beginning of recorded time.

Though TRAP remains a small company, and they like it that way, their program has reached people all over the United States and now in several other countries including Bulgaria, Syria, Canada, Ecuador and Turkey. Requests come in on a regular basis through their website from every corner of the planet.

Across the U.S.A., TRAP programming/curriculum is being utilized by major service provider organizations in California, Waterbury and Wallingford Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, in Upstate New York, Sarasota and Clearwater Florida, Chattanooga and Nashville Tennessee, Seattle Washington, The Northern Arizona State University, Alabama, Louisiana, Austin and Houston, Texas, as well as the Longview School in Raleigh, North Carolina (to name only a few).

A few notable awards TRAP has received:
* The Citation Award for Therapeutic Recreation, April 2002
* The prestigious Editors Achievement Award from Modern Drummer Magazine in recognition of “Outstanding Contribution to the Drum/ Percussion Community.” 2004
* The Michael Landon Award was presented to TRAP by the California Governor’s Committee, for accurately portraying people with disabilities in the media. 2005
* The Dr. Gerald Burday Professional Excellence Award
Presented by The Delaware County ARC. 2008
* The Citizens for Peaceful Resolutions Earth Charter Award for Eddie’s commitment to youth education and outreach. 2009
* The Music for Life Alliance Award as awarded by Muriel Anderson and the Eric A. Bergquist Award for excellence in Education in the percussive arts. 2011

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