An intensive weekend for piano accordion players of all ages and abilities! Intermediate / advanced students will spend a day each working with Murray Grainger and Paul Hutchinson, while Jane Ward will work with beginners making sure all levels get the most from the weekend.
There will be work on technique, repertoire and interpretation of folk tunes in small groups, plus informal evening sessions and a Saturday night tutors’ concert.
“Particularly welcomed the friendly atmosphere and tutors – I arrived feeling quite nervous but felt reassured and relaxed almost immediately. Will definitely come again, only wish I’d discovered this wonderful place long ago!” 2017 Participant
Who’s it For?
The course is aimed at piano accordion players from beginners to advanced – see note below re. Beginners.
“I left feeling more confident, with a more open mind on chording and with a renewed enthusiasm to TRY sometimes to play without music! Thanks so much for a helpful and friendly weekend with no responsibilities and loads of fun.” 2017 Participant
Beginners: Jane’s beginners’ group is ideal for those who have played a little; you’ll need a very basic knowledge of your instrument. We work from music, but it would be (and has been) possible for non music readers to learn by ear. If you’re unsure please get in touch. Music is not sent out in advance for Jane’s group.
Paul Hutchinson studied piano and church organ before being persuaded at the age of 17 to take up the accordion and form a ceilidh band. Since then he’s become one of the best-known and in demand players on the folk scene – in the UK and beyond – as one half of duo Belshazzar’s Feast, with trio Hoover the Dog, Pagoda Project (with Karen Wimhurst), and PLF. Paul is a regular tutor and musician at Halsway Manor, and the accordion tutor for EFDSS at Cecil Sharp House.
Murray Grainger is one of Britain’s most influential and innovative accordionists. Whether working with the finest orchestras, pushing the boundaries with his traditional projects or teaching around the UK, Murray is at the forefront of the British accordion scene. Trained in the classical accordion at The Royal Academy of Music, Murray has been a tutor in both classical and folk accordion at Chetham’s School of Music, on Newcastle University’s Folk and Traditional Music course, and as the Director of Education for Young Musicians Stornoway. This will be his third year as a tutor on Halsway Manor’s Accordion Weekend.
Jane Ward has been playing accordion for 50 years. She performed extensively around Europe as lead player in Jenny’s Accordionists, and played in Scottish, German and Polish bands before agreeing to play for a morris side 28 years ago and discovering folk music!
Following in the footsteps of Karen Tweed and Paul Hutchinson, Jane Ward took up the baton to lead the irrepressible No.1 Ladies Accordion Orchestra in 2014. She brings a winning combination of fun, frolics, and delicious musical treats to her Halsway workshops, to make your hearts sing and bring a smile to your face. She also tutors at Canterbury Folk Days, Burwell Bash Summer School, and Cecil Sharp House.