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National Youth Folk Ensemble, an English Folk Dance and Song Society programme developed with funding from Arts Council England.

FREE Sampler Days, led by Sam Patridge (Artistic Director from summer 2019), Rob Harbron and Miranda Rutter, offer a positive and welcoming atmosphere for young musicians to take part in creative folk music workshops. All playing and learning will be done by ear. Each Sampler Day will be an inspiring introduction to the Ensemble. All Young musicians are welcome to take part and if they want to they can audition for the fourth cohort of the Ensemble.

Sampler Days
Explore English folk music, learn from inspiring tutors and play with other young musicians from your region. Take part in a day of creative folk music workshops and, if you want to, audition for the National Youth Folk Ensemble.

Every year we run free Youth Folk Sampler Days across England for 14-18 year old instrumentalists. Book now to avoid disappointment! 

Saturday 25 May – Wolverhampton 
Sunday 26 May – Cambridge 
Monday 27 May – Southampton
Tuesday 28 May – Liskeard
Thursday 30 May – London
Friday 31 May – Derby
Saturday 1 June – Durham 
Sunday 2 June – Leeds 

Click here for more information and how to apply.

West Gallery Music Association, Singing/Instrumental WorkshopsJenny Ellis, Event Organiser
Saturday 9 November & Sunday 10 November 2019
Sidholme Hotel, Elysian Fields, Sidmouth EX10 8JU
Tickets £25.00 or £45.00 for both days (includes tea, coffee lunch)
Both day workshops and residential places @ £145 per person (full board, no singles supplement) are open to non members. For a booking form email or for further details ring her on either (01462) 629539 or 07505 131 880
Sat 10.00am – 6.00pm Local psalms, hymns and short anthems (optional afternoon workshop: 19th century glees/dance & militia band tunes)
Sun 10.00am-4.30pm Local carols
Discover or revisit the joy of  singing and playing west gallery music alongside experienced choir members and  leaders from all over the country. Sung and played by  local bands and choirs in urban and rural parish churches and dissenter chapels between c.1740 and c.1860,  the west gallery repertoire has been a source of inspiration and delight  to contemporary folk musicians for decades. WGMA, which came together at the Sidmouth Folk Festival in 1990, continues to run daily workshops at the festival and performs in the afternoons in one of the bus shelters on the sea front. See website. It returns to Sidmouth for its Autumn 2019 Sing Residential Weekend and looks forward to meeting old friends and making new ones. Workshops will be held in Sidholme Hotel’s splendid grade II listed Gothic Music Room. See website.

Give Voice Song Retreat
Halsway Manor, National Centre for Folk Arts, Halsway Lane, Crowcombe, Somerset TA4 4BD
Sunday 9 – Friday 14 June 2019

Building on the success of their annual Give Voice Weekends, we’re delighted that Tom and Barbara Brown have agreed to host a relaxed Summer week of folk song and singing with workshops, talks, film, discussions and sharing songs. With a fabulous all-singing team that includes Bonny Sartin, Janet Russell and Jeff Wesley, Jim Mageean and Marianne McAleer, the week includes:

  • Presentations of various aspects of folk song.
  • A film evening.
  • Finding and using vocal harmony.
  • Singing together workshop series.
  • Searching the Halsway library resources.
  • Individual and group help with singing, presentation.
  • Simple music theory and debunking ‘modes’.
  • Big sings in the bar.
  • Spare time to relax or chat or go for a walk.

For more information go to website

Melodeon Workshop Anne Niepold and Riccardo Tesi
Halsway Manor, National Centre for Folk Arts, Halsway Lane, Crowcombe, Somerset TA4 4BD
Monday 14 – Friday 18 October 2019
Two of Europe’s greatest exponents of the diatonic button accordion will by teaching a week long course at Halsway Manor for advanced and advanced-intermediate players. It’s an intensive skills-based course discovering new ways to interpret and play, and to make the music your own. A rare opportunity to spend a week with two of the best in their field. Places are limited so book early.
For more information go to website

Melodeon Building Course
Halsway Manor, National Centre for Folk Arts, Halsway Lane, Crowcombe, Somerset TA4 4BD
Friday 25 October – Friday 1 November 2019

Emmanuel Pariselle is one of Europe’s finest instrument makers and his courses will guide novice makers through the steps to build your own one-row melodeon. During the course you’ll  build a one row in American black walnut to reflect your individual preferences. Places are limited to 10 and sell-out well in advance so please do book early.
For more information go to website

The Mansion, Totnes. TQ9 5RP. Sessions held in the Pulse building
behind Totnes Library
Wednesdays 7.00pm - 8.30pm
Wednesday 30 January 2019
Wednesday 6 and 13 February 2019
Wednesday 6, 13, 20 and 27 March 2019
Wednesday 1, 8, 15, 22, May 2019
Wednesday 5, 12, 19 and 26 June 2019

Tunelink is a community project that provides opportunities for engagement with traditional music and dance in the South Hams.
Led by local musicians Griselda Sanderson and Louis Bingham, these workshops will focus on practical learning through playing and participation. There will also be occasional visits from guest artists, and content will be a mix of instrumental music, song and dance repertoire from a range of traditions, including but by no means limited to Irish, Scandinavian, Breton, Cornish or Old-time.
Participants will require some existing ability on their own instrument (acoustic only), and a willingness to dance. Sessions are based on traditional aural teaching methods, so a willingness to learn and play by ear is also necessary.
We encourage musicians passing through the area to attend the sessions, and welcome new participants joining the group at any stage of the term. Sessions are open to all ages, though under 16’s must be accompanied by a participating, responsible adult.
Tutors are also available to give one to one lessons. Please get in touch with any enquiries.For more information email or go to FaceBook page

American Square Dance Classes at Otter Squares
Newton Poppleford American Square Dance class Basic and Mainstream levels.
We teach basic and mainstream levels every Thursday afternoon from 2.00pm - 4.30pm (except August) at the Village Hall, Station Road, Newton Poppleford, Sidmouth EX10 0ER.
Newton Poppleford American Square Dance class Plus level.
We teach Plus level every Friday morning from 10.00am - 12.30 noon (except August) at the Village Hall, Station Road, Newton Poppleford, Sidmouth EX10 0ER.
Please contact For more information telephone Ron Peppin 01395 578306 or Janet Bulpin telephone 01297 33019 if you are interested in joining us.

JS Arts Workshops

JS Arts Workshops

For more information email or telephone 07713760266

Historical Dance Classes Lively historical dance, Playford and other periods, in Barrington Court (National Trust), near Ilminster, Somerset TA19 0NQ. Usually 2nd & 3rd Sundays, 1-4 pm. £5 donation requested, free entry to NT property.

Details from Ann Hinchliffe, telephone 01935 472771 or email

Worth coming along even once for the experience of dancing on a sprung oak floor in a Tudor Great Hall!

Irish Dance - North Devon
I have been Irish dancing for 12 years and reached advanced level. I have performed in numerous shows and public demonstrations. I have recently moved to this area from East Anglia, where I ran and managed my own dance school, and so I'm very keen to continue my passion for Irish dance here in the north Devon area, by either offering lessons or getting involved in some groups or doing some demonstrations/displays. If you would like any further details please don't hesitate to contact me - telephone 07977698939, or email.

Bodhraphonics Celtic drumming for all
We run Bodhran and drumming workshops for groups, clubs, schools, social events and festivals, where people can learn to play a Bodhran or hand drum, and play along to live Celtic and English folk music.
Workshops are lively, informative and good fun. We specialise in group workshops, clubs and working with people with learning or social disabilities. Drums, live music and PA provided. CRB checked, good rates.
For more information, please contact Bruce 07770 567639. Newton Abbot based, and can travel. See also Bodhran Tuition