New for 2012 – Gypsy jazz workshop

We are delighted that Paul Vernon Chester has agreed to run a Gypsy Jazz Workshop for us 13-19 May.

Paul is considered one of the best gypsy jazz guitarists  in the UK and is also well known for his excellent workshops.

It is an irresistable opportunity  for anyone who loves to play  acoustic guitar to learn a very different style which is so suited  to France where it all began!

The workshop isn’t just for beginners, so if you are already a fan of the style and would like to improve, check out the page for more details


2 World premiers for the Saxophone concert

This years Saxophone workshop with Andy Scott looks as if its going to be fantastic. The week is already fully booked with lots of regulars and some new faces as well.
We try to ensure that the week is challenging and different to other saxophone workshops and so this year we have arranged to participate at a concert organised by a local french/english choir- La Chantonge- at Fontenet on 5 April.
The choir has been in existence since 2004 and members are English French and Dutch. Twice yearly they do a series of concerts singing a wide range of material – classical as well as modern in both french and english.
I approached the choir late last year to see if they would be interested in doing a concert with the saxophone group and they were immediately very keen. There were discussion about what music the choir and saxophone could do together when Pauline Gordon a regular at the workshops said that she would like to write a piece specially for a saxophone quartet and choir.
She asked me if I could find a poem in French about the local area that she could use for the text. Initially I thought she had asked the impossible, but after searching on the internet I came across a web site in french where people could upload their poems . The poets are all anonymous using a pseudonym. I stumbled upon a poem written by someone who has logged that they live in the next village. The poem is called Bonjour Le Fleuve and is about the River Charente. It contains a line “La vie est un cadeau” Life is a gift and Pauline and I loved this line and knew it would be ideal.

Pauline composed the piece and it is now being rehearsed by the choir. and I started the search for the poet. I tried contacting them through the web site with no response so went to the local paper who published a piece this week asking for the poet to come forward. I wonder if we will have any success. It would be wonderful if we could invite them to the concert.

Andy Scott will also be premiering his composition La Moreau. This is a piece that he has written for solo saxophone dedicating it to our little village. What a delight.

A compilation recording of the concert will appear on our facebook page.
For anyone looking for a fantastic week playing the saxophone and  interested in coming next year get in touch and we will put your name down and keep you informed of dates etc.