We’re delighted to have European folk legends Blowzabella back at Halsway, with special guests Garenne (previously known as Les Poufs à Cordes) for a fabulous bal.
We’ll have a big marquee on the Manor lawns for the occasion. Blowzabella play dance music composed and arranged by the band for a variety of English and European traditional dances. The dances are easy to pick up and you don’t have to be an expert to get involved, just have a go. Many people choose not to dance and come along to watch and listen – and that’s fine too. The variety of the arrangements and the mixture of unusual and more usual instruments provides plenty to enjoy whether you’re out there dancing or sitting on the side-lines and listening.
Arrive from 7.15pm. We can’t offer accommodation with Bal tickets this year, but there are lovely local B&Bs and campsites if you’d like an overnight stay nearby after all that dancing.
Blowzabella is Andy Cutting – diatonic button accordion; Jo Freya – vocals, saxophones, clarinets, whistle; Paul James – vocals, border bagpipes, saxophones, whistle; David Shepherd – violin; Barn Stradling – bass guitar; and Jon Swayne – border bagpipes, saxophones.
The band make an inimitable, driving, drone-based wall of sound, played with a fabulous sense of melody, rhythmic expertise and sheer feeling. They compose their own music which is influenced by English and European traditional dance music. Many of the tunes they’ve composed are “standards” in the modern British/European folk repertoire and are played by people all over the world. Bands across Europe who experiment with folk music often cite Blowzabella as a major influence.
Since 2009, Garenne (Noëllie Nioulou and Clémence Cognet) have been offering vibrant acoustic music based on the popular violin repertoires of the Massif Central. When playing for dancing, they deploy an indomitable energy, flowing full of rich timbres and rhythms. Their music is multi-layered yet refined, and as good for the ears as it is for the feet!