With Paul James, Anne Niepold and Gigi Biolcati, an extended weekend course for musicians to develop ensemble playing skills and make imaginative arrangements that are exciting to listen and dance to. We’ll be using music from European folk/traditional/popular music traditions as the raw material to make new arrangements that can go in any direction. The aim is to explore and combine all sorts of influences and ideas to make spine tingling music that is more than the sum of the parts.
The course includes all day ensemble workshop sessions – and some short workshops on a range of topics in the early evening – with the aim of performing all the pieces we create together at a concert on the Sunday night.
“One of the best workshop weekends I have ever been on, superb in every way. Again please!” 2017 Participant
The course is led by composer/arranger Paul James – saxophones, border bagpipes (Blowzabella, Evening Star), Belgian diatonic accordion virtuoso and composer/arranger Anne Niepold and Italian drums/percussion maestro, composer and singer Gigi Biolcati (Riccardo Tesi / Banditaliana).
Arrive in time for lunch (1pm) on Friday, and depart after lunch on Monday.
Who’s it For?
This is an advanced/intermediate level course suitable for musicians of all ages (including 16-18 year olds), any instrument (acoustic, electric, ancient, modern) from any musical background (folk, jazz, rock, classical, early music). You’ll need to be able to read music or play well by ear.
If you play more than one instrument we advise you to bring it/them as this will help you to get the most from the course in terms of playing easily in different keys/modes, and also to be able to contribute in a way that is sympathetic to the style of the piece (bagpipes don’t sound great on everything!). During the course we will provide any music manuscript you need written out in Bflat/Eflat (for brass and saxes) as well as “concert”.
To get the most from this course you don’t need to be the greatest musician but you do need to be able to play confidently and be positive, flexible minded and a team player prepared to try things outside your comfort zone – and have the energy for quite long intensive days of music making.
You will be in safe hands with a very experienced tutor team in a mutually supportive atmosphere. We’ll have a lot of fun too with time for relaxation and informal music making.
“Amazing, inspiring and inventive tutors who were very dynamic in the way they led each session and gave everyone the confidence to step outside of their comfort zone and create something that was so much greater than the sum of its parts!” 2017 Participant