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Topette!! Workshop Weekend

Friday 6 Jun 4pm — Sunday 8 Jun 4pm, 2025

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


Full board per person (tuition, activities, all meals & accommodation):

£330 – single occupancy ensuite room/cabin
£285 – sharing an ensuite room/cabin
£285 – single occupancy non-ensuite room
£225 – sharing non-ensuite room

Camping per person (tuition, activities, all meals):


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


Get a closer look at the accommodation options here.

We’re delighted to be welcoming Topette!! to lead a weekend at Halsway for all instruments and levels of experience (except complete beginners).

Arrive for a session in the bar with the band on Friday night, then Saturday will be a big ensemble day, playing tunes from the Topette!! repertoire (music available in advance) and exploring playing for dancing. We’ll have a public Bal on Saturday night, and our workshop band (that’s you!) will be invited to open the evening, before joining the dancing. Sunday will allow for instrument-specific workshops, and a mixed-instrument band/session for those who prefer to continue playing together – and for those who play instruments not covered by the band’s line up.

You’ll go home with an insight into playing and arranging instrumental music intended for balfolk dancing, based on tunes from the Topette!! repertoire.

Who is it for?

The weekend is for musicians, all instruments, and all ability levels except for complete beginners – you will need a basic grasp of your instrument to get involved, but beyond that we’ll aim to be as inclusive as possible. There will also be opportunities to dance!

Most of your weekend will be spent learning with the band in a large ensemble setting, with some opportunities for small group work and one-to-one tuition. You don’t need to be able to read music but it would be beneficial for you to be comfortable playing by ear, or at least happy to give it a try – you may not receive all the sheet music in advance. You’ll also need a willingness to work collaboratively, and tolerant of others’ needs.

The Team

Topette!! occupy a unique position in the current folk and traditional music landscape. A collaboration between five highly-regarded individuals from two countries, they’re the kind of perfect idea that, if they didn’t already exist, someone would have to invent. Yet Topette!! are no mere ‘project’ band. They’re a fully-formed and functioning group of the kind that rarely comes around nowadays. Topette!! are a true collective – bonded as much by the joy found in each other’s company as in their shared musical vision.

Julien Cartonnet is a powerhouse on both bagpipes and banjo. Fiddler James Delarre’s innate melodic and harmonic sensibilities make him the perfect match for accordion virtuoso Andy CuttingTania Buisse’s propulsive bodhrán playing and Barn Stradling’s singularly distinctive bass grooves complete a sound that is irresistible to ears and feet alike.