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Moonrakers Folk Orchestra

Monday 3 Feb 4pm — Friday 7 Feb 10am, 2020

To make a booking enquiry please complete the form below. We will contact you to confirm availability and complete your booking.

Course Enquiry

  • Halsway Manor will not share your details with any third parties.


Full board per person (tuition, activities, tutor's gig, all meals & accommodation):

  • £360– single ensuite room
  • £330– sharing an ensuite room
  • £330– single non-ensuite room
  • £295– sharing non-ensuite room

Camping per person (tuition, activities, tutor's gig, all meals):

  • £220

Non Resident (tuition, activities, tutor's gig, all meals except breakfast):

  • £205

Members of Moonrakers (www.moonrakers.net) bring their exciting and dynamic music to this special Halsway Manor event for musicians and singers. Expect a relaxing, stimulating and engaging multi-instrumental week.

Whether you play bowed, fretted or reed instruments, whistles or flutes, or simply like to sing, you’re welcome on this course!

We’ll work on our own improvised arrangements of about 10 folk tunes and songs throughout the week; you don’t need to read music, but some instrumental experience is required. Music and recordings will be provided in advance.

In the evenings there will be plenty of opportunity for showcasing some of your own material.

Who’s it For?

This course is aimed at instrumentalists and singers with some experience under their belts. You’ll need a good understanding of your instrument and to be open to working in small and larger groups and trying new ways of working.

We’ve prepared a set of about tunes for the week; participants can download music or sound files using the links below. (If you provided a valid email address, you will have also received an email with this information).

You can download a pdf of all tunes here.

Sound files are available to listen to in a dropbox here.

This is an initial set of tunes for the week, but we’ll bring plenty more material, including some songs, so we can chop and change as required. The idea, however, is not to just learn tunes but to look in detail at how we might arrange these within a mixed ensemble of instruments. The sound files here are therefore just the skeleton – the tune itself – with beginnings of an arrangement. But what we may come up with could be very different!  For those of you who don’t read music, having these sound files in advance can be useful if you need to learn the tunes first.

We’ll explain everything when we get there. Meanwhile, work through at least some of the material here, learn the tune and begin to think of how we might develop it (a counter-melody? A particular rhythm or strumming pattern? A bass part?)

It will be quite a relaxed week with an opportunity to also have some one-to-one advice on developing your playing or writing. Don’t worry about your skill level: we will accommodate all standards.

Please print out the music and bring a music stand and a note book/pencil.

The Team

The tutors are two of Moonrakers’ members – Jon Bennett (guitar, bouzouki, ukulele, whistles, vocals) and Jacqui Johnson (cello, fiddle, whistle, vocals). Both tutors have many years’ experience of running workshops and folk orchestras across the country.