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GIG: Pipes and Gurdies

Saturday 17 Feb 8pm–10pm, 2024


£12 Adult

£6 Under 18

Join us for perhaps the most vibrant gig of the year at Halsway Manor. More pipes and gurdies than you can shake a stick at! Tutors of international reknown are coming to Halsway to lead the popular Pipes and Gurdies weekend. You can experience their magic at this concert performance.

Our International tutor team includes gurdy players Francesco Giusta, Benoit Michaud and Scott Marshall and pipers Isabelle Blô and Anne Marie Summers.

Francesco Giusta (IT): Francesco took an interest in the hurdy gurdy at the age of 11. He is a virtuosos on the instrument and plays in several folk and early music bands, and guests forwell-known Italian groups like Lou Dalfin, Malanova and L’Orage. His latest record, “The Hurdy-Gurdy at the French Royal Court”, was released in 2021. In 2015, he won the first price at the hurdy gurdy ‘solo’ competition at Le Son Continu festival in Chateau d’Ars, France, receiving the title of ‘Maître sonneur’. At present, he plays with Trigomigo, Tre Martelli, Baroque Duo, Les Vielleux de la Reine, and teaches in Torino, Cuneo and Frankfurt.

Benoit Michaud (FR): Benoit Michaud is becoming one of the driving forces in the hurdy-gurdy scene in France. Benoit started playing the hurdy-gurdy at the age of 9 at the conservatory of Nevers in the centre of France. He continued his musical training in Poitou and obtained a music teacher state diploma. He perfected his skills with Gilles Chabenat , and many others. He likes to accompany song, image, circus and storytelling. This is why, in addition to his solo projects, Benoit explores the hurdy-gurdy in various collaborative projects such as Arbadétorne, La Furie, Aubépine, Duo Michaud/Guérin, Betadynn and a show based on short stories from the French writer Maupassant.

Scott Marshall (UK) has been playing hurdy-gurdy since 2005. He has been a regular festival and workshop tutor for the last decade. In 2017 he recorded his first solo album Gurdymania, followed in 2018 by Gurdymania 2, using multiple hurdy-gurdies and effects units. He is currently recording the third and final Gurdymania album before moving onto new folk and metal projects.

Isabelle Blô originally trained as a percussionist, and is a multi-instrumentalist, working with the French bagpipes, hurdy-gurdy, diatonic accordion and chromatic accordion. Isabelle has led many music and dance masterclasses in France, Great Britain, Belgium and Switzerland. She has established a reputation as a great teacher all across Europe! More details about her workshops to follow.


Visit Isabelle’s Soundcloud

Anne Marie Summers is a player of the English bagpipes and general multi instrumentalist best known for her work with long time musical collaborator and gurdy player Steve Tyler with whom she formed the early music ensemble Misericordia and the French/Bretton inspired group The Wendigo which also featured melodeon player Julian Sutton. In the late 90s The Wendigo produced two albums ‘This Fiery Height’ and ‘Dancing on the Sea’, original dance tunes written by the group, many of which have found there way into the ‘traditional’ repertoire of sessions and dances around Europe. Anne Marie has played in many other early music and folk ensembles over the years most notably Jon Swayne’s English bagpipe ensemble Zephyrus which raised the bar for English piping with their performances and recordings of Jon’s masterful compositions The Half Hannikin Variations and English Folksong Suite. These days she works with her voice more often than her bagpipes leading various choirs, teaching music to children with special needs and working for the charity Music in Hospitals and Care. She has recently formed a Jazz trio to perform flapper songs from the 1920s.