Classes

2019 – Block 4

Wednesday 5th June – 3rd July inclusive (five weeks)

Level 2 and Level 3:
6.30 – 7.45 pm Technique
8.00 – 9.15 pm Style/Repertoire
Both classes for five weeks: £80
One class for five weeks (choose Technique or Style): £45

Please email or use the contact form to reserve your place. Payment (by bank transfer or cheque) is required to confirm all bookings.

For Level 2, Stewart will be looking at one of the definitive tune forms of the North East, the triple time hornpipe and has chosen some great examples to look at in depth. Melissa will be teaching the Level 3 Style class and will be exploring some of the fantastic tunes by Canadian fiddler Oliver Schroer. As usual, Melissa and Stewart will swap groups for the Technique classes, which will teach exercises and techniques geared up to support the Style class repertoire, but are equally applicable to so much other repertoire and general musicianship.

 

2019 – Block 3

Wednesday 24th Apr – 22nd May inclusive (five weeks)

Level 2 and Level 3:
6.30 – 7.45 pm Technique
8.00 – 9.15 pm Style
Both classes for five weeks: £80
One class for five weeks (choose Technique or Style): £45

Please email or use the contact form to reserve your place. Payment (by bank transfer or cheque) is required to confirm all bookings.

For Level 2, Melissa has chosen some great fiddle tunes for the Style class which originate in song melodies, including the beautiful tune The Lea Rig, and will use these to look further into transposing tunes on the fiddle. The Level 3 Style Class will be “Extending the Range” with Stewart, for which he has chosen to include two modern tunes in the traditional style which embrace all 4 strings on the fiddle, and a wonderful modern composition by Jenna Reid called The Gamekeeper’s Cottage, which is quite rightly proving to be very popular and which extends the lyrical phrase in a most beautiful way. As usual, Melissa and Stewart will swap groups for the Technique classes.

 

Level 2
For our Level 2 classes you will be familiar with basic tune forms (waltzes, jigs, hornpipes, polkas and reels) and will already be able to play simple tunes at a steady tempo in these different styles. Tunes will generally be in keys with signatures of no flats/sharps, 1 sharp or 2 sharps. You might be developing an interest in bowing styles and interpretation of the repertoire.

Level 3
Level 3 classes are aimed at proficient fiddle players who are comfortable with playing tunes in the common dance forms. You will be aware of ornamentation and bowing patterns and aspire to incorporate them more fully into your playing. Repertoire will include tunes in keys with signatures between one flat and 3 sharps.

 

The Technique Classes will cover bowing techniques (tone production, soundpoints and articulation, bowing patterns and groove); intonation and dexterity through scales and exercises, motifs, passage work and ornamentation techniques. The Style Classes will pull these together through tune acquisition, applying the relevant mix of techniques to each specific tune, and adding ornamentation, chords and harmonies, to cover the interpretation of the repertoire. Alternative approaches and related material will be considered.

The tunes for each five week block will cover a stylistic theme (such as a particular groove, a named composer or collection or a particular key, for example). Full resources (both written and audio) are provided for all participants.

 

Level 1 (not currently running – please enquire)
To get the most out of Level 1 fiddle classes you will be familiar with the basics of the instrument – how to hold the violin and the bow. You will have some rudimentary reading and/or aural skills, be familiar with open strings and the basic finger positions to produce a one octave scale of G, D and A major as well as a two octave scale of G major. You may not have an in depth knowledge of fiddle music, but will aspire to acquire the core beginner folk repertoire.

Absolute Beginners (not currently running)
This is a five week course aimed at those who have not played a violin before. It will give a basic introduction to holding the instrument and playing traditional fiddle. It will introduce bow hold, open strings and your first hand position, enabling you to have a go at your first tunes. You will need to bring a violin with you for this course, but do get in touch if you would like assistance with sourcing an instrument. Places are limited, so please email to reserve your place in advance.