The ever popular One Day Courses at Jackdaws offer an ideal way for singers and musicians to try something new or to polish skills, with the help of the team of talented tutors. In a supportive and friendly environment, you could work on improving your singing voice or polishing up your guitar skills. Maybe you’d like to take the opportunity to explore how to manage performance anxiety and move from panic to poise?
Courses are open to all singers and musicians and take place at Jackdaws in Great Elm, just 3 miles from Frome. Starting at 10am with welcome drinks and a chance to meet your Tutor and fellow participants, the tutored sessions take place from 10.30am to 4pm. We take a break for a delicious home cooked lunch at 1pm, which is included in the course fee of £45 (except Singing for All the Family, which has a different fee & format).
Vocal tutor Penny Jenkins makes a welcome return on Saturday 11 November for a favourite Jackdaws One Day Course – Singing for the over 50’s, with Accompanist Colin Hunt. Her course is aimed at singers of any ability, with no upper age limit! Come and discover that the singing voice can go on forever. This is a fun course for the over 50’s (or thereabouts), who are young at heart and want to learn to use their singing voice in a safe and nurturing way. Singing is a wonderful physical and social activity, which has been shown to have a positive effect on health and wellbeing. With Penny, you will rediscover your the joy that singing can bring, allowing you to make music for many years to come.
“I found the day to be most enjoyable and instructive. I thought that Penny had a wonderful manner with the participants”
On Sunday 12 November we try something new as we invite all ages to join with Caroline Radcliffe, leader of the Jackdaws Songbirds Choir. Parents, bring your children. Children, bring your parents! At Singing for All the Family we’ll all sing together with Caroline to build a choir in a day! We’ll learn easy songs from near and far; from England and across the world, building harmonies and adding parts to each song to excite all ranges and abilities. Songs will be taught by ear: no need to read music, and no special singing ability required. The cost for Singing for All the family is £35 per group (2 adults & 2 children), lunch is not included for this course; bring your own packed lunch, and we’ll provide squash and hot drinks. Or pre-book a Home-made “Soup and a Sandwich” at £5 per head.
If you think you can’t sing a note, or are scared to sing on your own, or if you are always hiding at the back of the choir, a day with Jessica Walker at ‘Singing with Confidence‘ on Saturday 9 December, is a date for your diary.
Jessica will show you how you can start to become a more confident singer through the use of key breathing and vocal exercises. She will help you to gain a firmer foundation for your singing and encourage you to have the confidence to take the next step. The experienced Colin Hunt will be on hand as Accompanist.
“Jessica is a really great teacher, very encouraging and insightful about what individuals needed. I came away absolutely inspired and feeling I know what to focus on with my singing”
Another Jackdaws favourite, Chris Stell, will join us in Great Elm to teach the One Day Guitar Course on Sunday 10 December. Chris already leads the Guitar Ensemble weekend at Jackdaws each year with his duo partner Mark Eden, which is always oversubscribed. This One Day course is perfect for the strummer who wants to add to their skills, or the aspiring Spanish/classical player who would benefit from tips from the best in the business! Spend a few hours discovering the full range of the guitar by experimenting with classical style and techniques.
“I learnt a lot throughout the day, I particularly enjoyed the ensemble session”
Looking ahead to 2018, another new tutor brings another exciting new One Day course to Jackdaws. Wendy Skeen introduces her fascinating approach addressing performance anxieties in From Panic to Poise on Sunday 8 April 2018.
Many musicians experience anxiety about performing in public and either struggle through it or avoid performing altogether. If you are one of them, you’re in good company; Artur Rubinstein, Pablo Casals, Renée Fleming and Vladimir Horowitz (to name just a few) are reported to have struggled with it at various points in their careers. Even Frédéric Chopin disliked playing in front of large audiences.
Wendy’s One Day workshop will explore practical strategies – drawn from Cognitive Hypnotherapy and NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) in particular – that can help in managing performance anxiety. Our goal will be to find ways that help you move from ‘panic’ to ‘poise’, so that you can enjoy performing and sharing your music-making with others.