Singing... in good company
at
Blencowe Hall

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Do you love to sing, whether it's in a choir, for your own pleasure,
singing solo or do you simply wish you could learn to sing...

If so, come and join us on a Vocal Inspiration Singing Course, partners welcome.

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"It was such an enjoyable few days of singing and laughter and a joy to spend the time with others who share the same love of singing. Wilma's unstinting enthusiasm and energy made it all the more fun and her enormous encouragement led us to explore our capabilities...

We were also blessed with a delightful and very talented accompanist, Claire.

I came home so enthusiastic about the course that now all my friends want to take up singing!"

MS

  • For beginners to experienced amateur singers
  • Individual teaching and coaching from highly experienced tutors
  • Singing together in a supportive environment of a small vocal ensemble of up to 20 participants, you will advance your essential listening, reading and interpretation skills
  • The versatility of this course offers each student the opportunity to concentrate on their individual areas of vocal interest by choosing from a choice of workshops and to share in the enjoyment of singing with others. The aim being that they finish the course inspired and motivated by their achievements
  • Workshops on offer enable you to advance vocal technique, musicianship and platform skills. We are also delighted to welcome a visiting specialist for 'Mindfulness for Musicians' workshops
  • Following all this singing why not rest your voice and enjoy discovering the wonderful surroundings around Blencowe Hall - a multi award winning Grade I listed castellated manor in the Lake District
  • Excellent, freshly prepared food ffor lunch and dinner - local caterer providing delicious home cooked meals from scratch and Cumbrian specialities using as much locally grown produce as possible including ingredients from caterers own kitchen garden and greenhouse
  • Excellent value for money: the cost is inclusive of all tuition, accommodation, music, food and wine
THE COURSE starts on Monday at 4pm with a Welcome Meeting followed by an ensemble rehearsal.

Each participant receives:
  • an individual singing lesson with Wilma
  • an individual coaching session with the vocal coach

Each full day, participants can attend:
  • A group vocal warm-up
  • Ensemble rehearsals (classical, African, traditional and gospel - music is provided)
  • Masterclass
  • Choice of several optional Workshops

Over the course of the week, each participant will have the opportunity to:
  • sing solo in a masterclass
  • participate in a performance class
  • perform in the celebratory private concert(solo or as part of the ensemble)
  • attend the midweek Mindfulness for Musicians workshops led by Anna Mavromatidi
  • choose their optional daily workshops. The list below contains choices from recent courses

There will be a celebratory private concert containing the ensemble repertoire rehearsed throughout the course. Each participant can also perform a solo song, but only if they wish.


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Music Workshops

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"I can't remember when I have enjoyed a learning/musical participation event so much... I loved meeting my fellow participants and hearing their repertoire... the food was superb...Thank you for a wonderful week and for all your skill, inspiration and encouragement. Naturally I want to come back!"

C.D

  • Healthy choral singing - build/develop your skills in the following vital areas: vocal tone/ blending, intonation, breath control, and legato
  • Vocal technique - including breathing, posture, vowel formation, vocal timbre, resonance
  • Sight singing and Aural - practise and improve your reading skills and awaken your inner ear in these enjoyable and confidence-building workshops
  • Discover your voice (for beginners only) - realise what it is like to discover sense your voice and enjoy singing with more confidence
  • Performance class - Solo performance platform/audition and exam skills - learn/revise the essential skills to enable you to 'own your space' and perform with poise and artistry
  • Music Appreciation - an informative and educational workshop to increase the depth of your musical knowledge
  • Working with your accompanist - learn the vital skills which can enhance your performance
  • Learning a song: from the inside out - this workshop suits singers of all abilities. Discover the journey one should make from the start of learning a new song or aria, right through to delivering an artistic and engaging performance
  • Singing agility with more ease - discover and learn how to "handle the fast bits in Handel" with exercises to improve melismatic passages (the runny bits)
  • Exploring the text - finding a deeper appreciation to enable you to communicate your song with clear intention and confidence

Mindfulness for Musicians

In the words of Ruby Wax...
"If you want to free yourself from anxiety and stress, and feel at ease with yourself as you walk on stage, then Mindfulness is for you..."
The Mindfulness Workshops are led by Anna Mavromatidi, a lecturer at Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and accompanist. Anna is also in demand as a Workshop Facilitator for MAYA - Music Art Yoga Awareness - classes and workshops.

The benefits of mindfulness for singing are numerous.

The optional workshops introduce ways to discover how to:

  • bring yourself into the present moment in preparation for singing lessons, performances and practice
  • help participants not only to be aware of extraneous tensions, but introduce ways to help them to retrain bad habits and work on posture and breathing
  • apply mindful techniques on stage which may help the prepared singer be more creative and dynamic and perform less on autopilot
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REPERTOIRE:
We suggest bringing one solo song (or duet) for the masterclass and Private Concert (and unless you have several well-prepared pieces, we advise you use the same piece on both occasions).

The other opportunity to sing a solo (or duet) is at the performance class on the final day. You may of course sing the same piece again if you wish, or bring a different, well-prepared piece of a more light-hearted nature for this final class. You will be able to rehearse the above repertoire in your coaching session.

The choice of solo repertoire is up to you e.g. a simple folk song you know, 17th/18th Century Italian aria, Lied, French song, English art song or musical theatre song.

Please bring the original music and also two copies (for rehearsal purposes) i.e. 3 copies in total. There are no photocopying facilities on the course.
"What an enjoyable few days! I've been in a choir but never sung on my own before and it was such an encouraging and supportive environment to learn in. Wilma is a tremendous teacher and seems to find exactly the right way of helping each individual to improve their voice. Our accompanist Claire was so patient with us all and had lots to teach us, and Caroline plied us with delicious food and good cheer. I'm inspired to carry on singing now, and have made new friends along the way".

MB

FUTURE COURSES - Be the first to know when future dates are released by joining our mailing list.