November 26th 2011 – ” High Days & Holy Days”, songs for celebrations and festivals.
With Christmas just around the corner, and the rest of the calendar full of red-letter days (whether secular, religious or just plain fun), bring along some songs for special occasions large or small, national or personal. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to apply or for more details.
The October ‘Mists & Mellow Fruitfulness‘ workshop is now fully booked, but as always there is a waiting list in case of cancellations, so do contact Stephen (email@example.com) if you’d like to be added to this.
Spring is traditionally when a young man’s fancy does its thing, and naturally enough, a young woman’s as well. Since the majority of songs are about Love, a good number of them are Spring songs too. Bring along your favourites and hear what others have found. Find out more about our Song Workshops.
50 years after his death, the virtuoso pianist and composer Percy Grainger (1882-1961) is emerging as one of the most revolutionary cultural figures of the 20th century. Come and discover the joy of his music and some of its background in more than 120 works – a spectacular four days you will not forget. Penelope Thwaites, Artistic Director
Our next song workshop at Ansells Farm has the theme “Comedy & Tragedy – The Two Faces of Drama”. This workshop has been postponed from October 2nd until November 27th due to circumstances beyond our control.
Contact Stephen Varcoe (firstname.lastname@example.org) to book a place. Find out more about our Song Workshops.
“… your weekends really are the most perfect experiences”…
A quote from one of the letters we received after this, our second annual festival, voted even better than last year’s by participants and audiences. Once again the weather gods were soothed by the prospect of mellifluous music into behaving impeccably, and the sunshine and warmth enhanced our theme of Travel, Holidays and Adventures. Eight students of singing spent all day Saturday, and Sunday morning, in intensive masterclasses with Stephen and accompanist Susi Morrow; then in the evening everyone relaxed, and members of the public joined us to enjoy picnics in the summery garden before two wonderful concerts, given by distinguished guest musicians.
Friday night’s concert, a complete sell-out, was a wonderful treat. Renowned actress Prunella Scales joined Stephen in a programme entitled ‘Travelling Hopefully’, an anthology of words and music from exotic travellers’ tales to hilarious holiday experiences, with songs to match.
On Saturday, brilliant young husband and wife duo Marcus Barcham-Stevens and Christina Lawrie took us (and their violin and piano) round Europe on a musical adventure, and Stephen joined Marcus as narrator for a performance of Alan Ridout’s delightful ‘Ferdinand the Bull’.
The final concert on Sunday afternoon saw our eight singing-workshop participants presenting a varied programme of songs to an enthusiastic audience, followed by tea and homemade cakes in the garden.
It’s clear that we’ve started a new Alphamstone tradition, and we’re already planning for next year’s festival, when we hope to equal (or even exceed?) this year’s triumph – dates to be announced later!
We hosted the first Song Workshop of the year on Feb 13th entitled “Love in Adversity”, which was fully subscribed and greatly enjoyed.
The next one is on Apr 24th, exploring songs by composers with significant anniversaries this year – Mahler, Wolf and Barber among others. Contact Stephen (email@example.com) to book a place. Find out more about our Song Workshops.
Then ADVANCE NOTICE, a date for the diary! Our Ansells Summer Music weekend this year runs from Friday evening to Sunday afternoon 2nd – 4th July. More details soon, but places for eight singers to work with Stephen towards presenting a short concert before an audience on the Sunday afternoon.