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The Askew Sisters’ Creative English Music and Song Weekend

Friday 19 Jul 4pm — Sunday 21 Jul 5pm, 2019

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 (all meals, accommodation, activities):

  • £240 – single ensuite room
  • £210 – sharing an ensuite room
  • £210 – single non-ensuite room
  • £165 – sharing non-ensuite room

Camping per person (all meals, and activities):

  • £155

Non Resident (all meals except breakfast, and activities:)

  • £145

An enjoyable weekend for singers and musicians to join sisters Emily and Hazel Askew for a creative exploration of English music and song.

The weekend will focus on bringing music to life using traditional techniques and styles as well as tools to inspire your own creativity. We will look at ways of playing, singing and researching traditional English songs and tunes, as well as artistic ways to interpret, edit and arrange this material. Over the weekend we will work as a whole group, we’ll split into two groups of singers and instrumentalists, and we’ll also work in smaller mixed groups of semi-self-directed singers and instrumentalists, to have fun putting what we’ve learnt into action!

The Askew Sisters will perform an informal concert in the Saturday evening, and participants are invited to contribute spots should they wish!

Who’s it For?

Singers: all levels of experience and ability welcome, but we ask that you come prepared to sing in both large groups and smaller groups.

Musicians: you’ll need to know your way around the basics of your instruments as we will be learning in mixed instrument groups; there won’t be instrument-specific workshops. All instruments can be included.

Singer- musicians are very welcome too!

Both singers and musicians will need to be willing to learn by ear: you’ll be provided with handouts to keep after the sessions, but workshops will be taught by ear so you must be willing to try.

The Team

The Askew Sisters, Emily (Alma, Emily Askew Band) and Hazel (Lady Maisery, Coven, Songs of Separation), are two of the foremost performers and interpreters of English folk music. As an acclaimed duo, their live performances brim with the depth and connection not only of two sisters, but also of two musicians who have been immersed in folk music all their lives.

Together, they rework and reinterpret songs and balladry, creating breath-taking arrangements, which allow words that are hundreds of years old resonate profoundly with contemporary audiences. Both are also skilled multi-instrumentalists and expert players of dance music, using fiddles, melodeons, concertina and cello in their innate drive to bring old dance music to life. Their long awaited fourth studio album will be released in early 2019.

Emily Askew has a wealth of teaching experience embracing folk and early music in different educational contexts. She has led music workshops for both children and adults in schools, music centres, festivals and summer schools. These have included Dartington Summer School, Aldeburgh Young Musicians, Spitalfields Festival, Globe Theatre Education and three years of Brighton Early Music Festival workshops for local schools. She is a principal study Recorder teacher for Trinity College of Music and has led the EFDSS London Youth Folk Ensemble since 2017.

Hazel Askew  is an experienced folk music educator, passionate about sharing folk music with people of all ages and abilities. She has led workshops and courses for organisations including Barbican Creative Learning, Folkworks, Aldeburgh Young Musicians, Dartington Summer School, Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre and various festivals around the country. She is a regular tutor and project leader for EFDSS and leads their weekly classes for voice and melodeon. Following a year as Artist in Residence at Halsway with Lady Maisery in 2017, Hazel has run singing courses at the Manor (with Lady Maisery), and tutored on our popular DG Melodeon weekend.