On the 17th March, EFDSS made the decision to pause all events until 31 May 2020 due to coronavirus. Their priority, as well as Kent Music’s, is keeping staff, participants, artists and tutors safe. You can read the statement here: https://www.efdss.org/about-us/what-we-do/news/10007-cecil-sharp-house-c19
However, we’re pleased to say that the events will still be going ahead – they are moving online! Below is the statement and more information from the EFDSS team, and more information can be found here: https://www.efdss.org/learning/young-people/national-youth-folk-ensemble/sampler-days
“We are happy to say that our Youth Folk Sampler Days will happen online in May 2020! We have cancelled the events scheduled in venues due to the coronavirus pandemic, and we are encouraging young musicians to take part from home.
The National Youth Folk Ensemble team will deliver virtual workshops introducing young musicians to folk tunes, techniques and creative ideas. We are planning a mix of pre-recorded tutorials and interactive activities using readily available online technology.
Young musicians can still audition for the 2020-21 National Youth Folk Ensemble by registering for a Youth Folk Sampler Day. We hope that the final auditions will still happen in person at Cecil Sharp House on 11 and 12 July 2020. If this is not possible, we will organise alternative provision.”
The English Folk Dance and Song Society, in partnership with Kent Music and Tenterden Folk Festival, are proud to present one of only eight free sampler days throughout England this year, to take place in Ashford on May 31st.
The creative, challenging workshop is designed to give young musicians a chance to find out more about English folk music, and specifically the National Youth Folk Ensemble. The ensemble celebrates excellence in youth folk music, bringing together talented young folk musicians from across England to create and perform inspiring new arrangements of folk music and work with leading folk artists.
All keen young musicians aged 12 – 18 eager to explore new arrangements and styles of music are invited to take part in the creative and challenging workshop this May. No previous experience with folk music is necessary and, unlike a classical orchestra, there are no restrictions on the type of instrument you play – just that you play it with confidence!*
Each Sampler Day of creative music-making features:
- workshops with superb musicians who are also highly experienced educators
• Q&A with Ensemble staff
• an optional short audition, if you are aged 14+ and want to apply for the National Youth Folk Ensemble
All playing and learning will be done by ear, offering young musicians the opportunity to develop an area of their musical skill set which they may never have had the chance to previously.
Spaces are extremely limited and booking is essential, so we would encourage any interested parties to sign up for their free place as soon as possible at efdss.org/youthfolk.
*NB: Musicians with electric instruments must bring their own amps and leads. The National Youth Folk Ensemble’s repertoire is currently instrumental only so the Sampler Day is not suitable for singers.