Halsway 2015

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Harpas at Halsway - Nyckelharpa Festival - Year Four
at Halsway Manor
4th - 6th September 2015

In 2015 we expanded the course to have three tutors and took over the whole manor. It was a gamble - but one that paid off!  We had 43 players from a UK population of 86. We brought in participants from Sweden, Germany, Luxembourg, Canada and Belgium. It was amazing!

Contact Vicki or Halsway Manor
Bookings are open and are spaces are filling fast. Only one room and a couple of shared room beds left, so book now or you'll have to bring a tent!

Interest in the nyckelharpa has been steadily growing over the last decade and finally the critical mass has been reached to allow a whole weekend festival for this wonderful instrument. The fourth year of Nyckelharpas at Halsway is bigger and better. Taking over the main building means that there can be more tutors, more players and more exciting activities.

Three contrasting international tutors have been selected to offer a whole range of tuition on a variety of subjects: Peter Hedlund from Sweden, Didier Francois from Belgium and Vicki Swan from the UK.

You can expect Swedish music, British music, ensemble music, technique, a talk on the history of the nyckelharpa by Per-Ulf Allmo, maintenance provided by Olle Plahn, sessions, dancing and much, much more.

There are limited spaces for complete beginners who wish to borrow an instrument - beginners spaces are now full.
22nd - 24th April 2016 is the next beginners weekend, sign up now get your space and instrument!

Although the tuition will be geared towards the nyckelharpa, fiddlers wishing to study Swedish music alongside the nyckelharpa players are also welcome.

Friday Night - Opening meeting and session

Saturday - workshops • concert • Harpalympics • dance • session
Sunday - workshops

Single room : ensuite £200 / non-ensuite £170
Shared room : ensuite £180 / non-ensuite £160
Camping : £120
Workshops only : £90

*check prices with Halsway Manor

How to Book:
Phone Halsway Manor and ask for Viv to make your booking - +44 19 84 61 82 74
Then send Vicki an email to be added to the participant list and get access to the community.


Vicki Peter didier

Vicki Swan (UK)

Peter Hedlund (Sweden)

Didier Francois (Belgium)

*subject to us getting enough participants booked in - so book early and be part of the harpa adventure!

About Vicki Swan (UK)
Vicki graduated from the Royal College of Music on double bass, specialising in performance. Well known on the British folk scene she is a full time folk musician performing on nyckelharpa, bagpipes and singing. Being half Swedish the nyckelharpa was a natural choice to add to her armory of instruments and is now leading the development of the nyckelharpa in Great Britain with the UK Nyckelharpa Project and spearheaded the newly formed UK Nyckelharpa Society. In addition to various duo recordings Vicki has recently published the ‘British Session Tunes for Nyckelharpa’ and also a book of Duets in the Swedish Style. Vicki is a qualified teacher, specialising in instrumental teaching and has a masters in Education (specialising in distance tuition on the Scottish smallpipes) and composes and arranges music for the nyckelharpa and other ensembles. She is a member of the ENCORE (European Nyckelharpa Co-operation - ORchestral Experience) for 2013 and a tutor on the International Nyckelharpa Days in Germany in 2014 and 2015.

About Peter Hedlund (Sweden)
Peter is considered Sweden’s leading traditional player of the modern chromatic nyckelharpa, having won the title World Champion twice, in 1992 and 2000. He earned the designation Riksspelman – Fiddler of the Realm – while still in his teens (1975). Peter and his nyckelharpa are a commanding presence whilst in the act of bringing forth music. Pure magic. His music is a powerful example of continuation – an unbroked thread linking past, present and future.

Justly proud of his position in the realm of Swedish traditional music, Peter is gradually expanding the horizons of nyckelharpa expression. In his role as an instructor, he has the opportunity to influence and nurture the growth and development of the next generation of nyckelharpa players. Peter, true to tradition, also ”makes” tunes, which are quickly gaining favor among today’s nyckelharpa players. Neglected and almost forgotten by the 1940s and 50s, the modern chromatic nyckelharpa is blossoming as never before both in Sweden and elsewhere, especially the USA and Japan.

About Didier Francois (Belgium)
After a long journey of studying the violin in the classical and jazz world Didier has now been playing nyckelharpa for almost 20 years. He developed his own technique of relaxed playing and fluid movements to avoid tendinitis and for the beauty of the sound and he specializes in playing in a polyphonic way. Currently, he is writing a book "Holistic Polyphony" on this experience. He has performed on violin and nyckelharpa with Stefane Grappelli, Gabriel Yacoub, Armand Amar. He has composed for ballet, film and theatre, is a sculptor, and he has been teaching for many years.

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