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Ithaca, NY August 30 – September 4, 2015

This one-of a kind retreat takes place in Ithaca, New York, in the world-famous Finger Lakes. Join Billy Cobham, Dave Weckl and Steve Holmes for serious hands-on study at the Hangar Theatre by day, laid-back private group dinners at night, plus bonus entertainment along the way. You can even bring a spouse or companion (restrictions apply).

Rhythm Retreat participants get their own lakefront guesthouse with private rooms at the exceptional Inns of Aurora 20 minutes away. A variety of amenities and activities are available, from kayaking to bicycling, gym facilities and more.

Choose from 6-day, 4-day and 3-day all-inclusive packages. Complete itinerary provided upon registration.

Questions about anything? Feel free to contact us.

Master Clinicians


Ever since his breakthrough in the early 1970s as a founding member of the Mahavishnu Orchestra, Billy Cobham has remained a tireless musical explorer. As a drummer/leader, Cobham’s seminal recordings such as Spectrum and his powerful, complex style of play has exerted a strong influence on the course of jazz and jazz-fusion.

The subject of a 2007 documentary, Sonic Mirror, Cobham has lent his vision and talents to an immense range of musical artists through the years, from Horace Silver to George Benson, Dreams, Miles Davis, George Duke, John Scofield, Grateful Dead, Jack Bruce, Tony Williams, Jazz is Dead and many others.

A native of Panama, Billy Cobham reigns as a legendary master drummer, percussionist, composer, producer, educator and clinician who gives service through music as he constantly expands his own creative expression.

Please note: Billy requires all his Rhythm Retreat students to submit a 2-minute video of their playing. This is not an audition, but a chance for Billy to assess your playing and determine areas to focus on.


For more than 25 years, Dave Weckl has developed and maintained a reputation among fans, peers, and the international music community as one of the great living drummers. For this, he has received numerous accolades and honors; Dave was inducted into Modern Drummer’s Hall of Fame and named one of the 25 best drummers of all time.

From his longstanding stint with Chick Corea’s Akoustic and Elektric bands to his work with Simon and Garfunkel, Oz Noy, Mike Stern and his own solo projects, this St. Louis, Missouri native retains an undying commitment to making great compositions. Dave’s incredibly dynamic and diverse drumming, which has inspired musicians worldwide, is built on a solid foundation of knowledge and respect for music. A constant student of the art of drumming and music, Dave gives back every chance he gets through clinics and classes around the world.

Power Practicum™ Instructor


A highly sought after educator, Steve is the author of the popular instructional DVD, Shed Some Light. He has played with Lee Ritenour, Eric Marienthal, Celine Dion, Dorian Cheah and others. Steve will discuss, demonstrate and instruct you on how to achieve creative freedom on the drums. From musical motivation and technique to how, what and why to practice, you’ll gain deep, rigorous insight into the art of playing drums.

Steve will also help you steer the clinic, so you can work on achieving your specific goals.

You and your fellow drummers will have command of your own lakeside property, the renowned Rowland House at Inns of Aurora in Aurora, New York. This grand, historic home has been thoroughly renovated to provide the comforts you’ll crave after a day of intensive study.

Rowland House

Enjoy a sumptuous room with private bath, lakeside sunsets, a sprawling back lawn, use of partner athletic facilities, a friendly tavern and billiards across the street and a complimentary happy hour each evening.

Sample Rowland House room.

Three separate parlors allow for additional privacy or impromptu practice pad jams, while a huge wraparound porch affords you plenty of opportunity to relax and take in the view.

Rooms are assigned according to package chosen and arrival time.

Sample Rowland House interior.

All classes take place daily at The Hangar Theatre in Ithaca, New York, a 20-minute drive from Aurora. All practice equipment will be provided to students, and additional acoustic drumsets are available for practice or demonstrations.

The theatre features a thrust stage and vintage seating from Ithaca College, plus a dressing area, lounge, outdoor patio and additional restrooms. It is a 5-minute walk from the scenic Ithaca waterfront.

Hangar Theater exterior.Hangar Theater view from stage.Hangar Theater stage, side view.

Spouses and companions are welcome at Rhythm Retreat, and there will be various daytime activities available to them. The Finger Lakes is a vibrant region filled with natural, cultural and culinary adventures waiting to be explored.

Cayuga Lake view from Rowland House.

Companions can view your drumming masterclass from a discreet area of the theatre as well as partake in certain evening events and recreation.

Inns of Aurora (Rowland House)

453 Main Street, Aurora, New York, 13026

Rowland House is the 3rd house in the “chain” of Inns, right after EB Morgan House.


Google Maps

By Car


Take I-81 North to Exit 12 (Homer). Go straight to the first stoplight. Turn right and go to next stoplight. Turn left onto State Route 90. Continue along State Route 90 for about 45 minutes until you reach the village of Aurora. The inn is on your left.


Take the New York State Thruway (I-90) East to Exit 41. Turn right onto Route 414 and then left onto Route 318. At the end of Route 318, turn left onto Routes 5 and 20.After 2 miles, turn right onto State Route 90. Stay on Route 90 for about 15 miles until you enter the village of Aurora. The Aurora Inn will be on your right.


Take NYS Thruway (I-90) West to Exit 40 (Weedsport). Follow Route 34 South for about 14 miles. You’ll travel through and past Auburn. Just after the small village of Fleming, turn right onto Route 34B, which you will take for another 8 miles. When you come to Sherwood Road, turn right. Follow Sherwood Road approximately 5.5 miles to State Route 90/Main Street and turn left. The Aurora Inn will be on your right.


Take I-81 South to Syracuse to the New York State Thruway (1-90) West. Take Exit 40 (Weedsport). Follow Route 34 South for 14 miles. You’ll travel through and past Auburn. Just after the small village of Fleming, turn right onto Route 34B, which you will take for another 8 miles. When you come to Sherwood Road, turn right. Follow Sherwood Road approximately 5.5 miles to State Route 90/Main Street and turn left. The Aurora Inn will be on your right.

By Air

Ithaca Tompkins Regional Airport (ITH)
1 Culligan Dr, Ithaca, NY 14850
35 minutes by car to Rowland House

Syracuse Hancock International Airport (SYR)
1000 Col Eileen Collins Blvd, Syracuse, NY 13212
1 hour and 5 minutes by car to Rowland House

Greater Rochester International Airport (ROC)
1200 Brooks Ave, Rochester, NY 14624
1 hour and 18 minutes by car to Rowland House

By Train

William F. Walsh Regional Transportation Center
1 Walsh Circle Syracuse, NY 13208
1 hour and 3 minutes by car to Rowland House

Taxi companies

College Town Taxi (Ithaca)

Syracuse Taxi (Syracuse Airport)

Car rentals

803 CASCADILLA ST, ITHACA, NY (607) 275-9000