Workshops

Once again, we have a fabulous range of workshops in 2017. Something for everyone, whatever your current ability.

Details of these workshops are below, and will be available to book from February 15th.

Please note that you need to be a ticket holder to book workshops, so make sure you don’t miss out on the tickets! You can buy them here.

Workshops At A Glance

DayTimeTitleProviderVenue
Sat9.30-10.45Less is MoreKen MiddletonSt Andrews
Sat9.30-10.45Group DynamicsStrumdiddlyumptiousSt Andrews
Sat9.30-10.45Kids, Kids, Kids!Ooks of HazzardSt Andrews
Sat9.30-11.00Practical TabRobin WalterThe Tivoli
Sat10.00-11.15Between the ChordsJames AggTown Hall
Sat11.00-12.15Leading a JamKen MiddletonSt Andrews
Sat11.00-12.15Jazz ImprovisationAbe Lagrimas JrSt Andrews
Sat11.00-12.15Right-hand TechniqueUff & DaveSt Andrews
Sat11.30-12.45Blues & BeyondPhil DolemanTown Hall
Sat11.30-12.45Folk & Fiddle TunesBen RouseTown Hall
Sun1.30-2.45Technique, Tone & TasteAbe Lagrimas JrBethesda
Sun1.30-2.45Melody Playing within the ChordsUff & DaveBethesda
Sun1.30-2.45The Circle of FifthsPhil DolemanBethesda
Sun2.00-3.15Going Solo like a Rock StarBen RouseSomerset Arms

Saturday Workshops

Less is More

Provider: Ken Middleton
Day: Saturday 17th June
Time:  9.30-10.45am
Place: St Andrew’s United Reformed Church
Level: Advanced beginner/intermediate
Cost:  £15.00

In this workshop you will find out why it is often better to play fewer notes and simpler strums on the ukulele. You will discover how to play songs more simply, but much more musically. You will learn how to put contrasts into your playing by changing volume, tone, and complexity within the song. You will practise simple techniques that you may not have tried yet. We will explore ways of performing with others where everyone plays something different. During this workshop we will be playing a number of well-known songs, all in the key of F. To benefit fully from this class you will need to already be able to strum at least the chords of F, Gm, Am, Bb, C and Dm. Come to the class with any wooden ukulele in C tuning.

Group Dynamics

Provider:  Strumdiddlyumptious
Day:  Saturday 17th June
Time:  9.30-10.45am
Place:  St Andrew’s United Reformed Church
Level:  Any
Cost:  £15.00

Do you play in a ukulele group? Do you lead a ukulele group? Are you looking to explore group performance but not sure how? This workshop will give you a five step system which enables you to enhance the music you perform with a group.  Everything from chord shapes, vocal harmonies and dynamics will be covered and pulled apart to help you get the most from your instrument and the group you’re with. If you’re looking for group progression whether you play in a large or small group then this workshop is for you. You will leave with practical information which can be easily replicated by yourselves for any song you wish to perform.

Kids, Kids, Kids!

Provider:  Ooks of Hazzard
Day:  Saturday 17th June
Time:  9.30-10.45am
Place:  St Andrew’s United Reformed Church
Level:  Any
Cost:  £15.00

In this workshop, the boys will break everyone up into separate groups and then teach each group the parts of the song which first got them noticed and which they will be including later in their set on the main stage. Teaching will be based on everyone’s own level, and you’ll all be invited to perform the song together with the Ooks on Sunday at the Norwood.

Practical Tab – Applying tab in different arrangements

Provider:  Robin Walter
Day: Saturday 17th June
Time: 9.30-11.00am
Place: The Tivoli
Level: Competent beginners, intermediate and advanced
Cost: £20.00 (including coffee and croissant)

SOLD OUT

Been strumming for a while and fancy a new ukulele challenge? This workshop uses Tab (“tableture”) to play tunes and harmonies in a variety of settings. We will be putting together 3 pieces:  Fields of Gold by Sting, arranged for fingerpicking and tune; Autumn Leaves, the classic jazz ballad, arranged in ‘chord solo’ style, and I Got Rhythm by George Gershwin, arranged in big band style for four-part harmony. To get the most out of this workshop you will need to prepare! Once you sign up, Robin will send the Tab sheets and a link to audio files of the pieces.

Between the Chords (Bass)

Provider:  James Agg
Day: Saturday 17th June
Time: 10.00-11.15
Place: Town Hall
Level: Any but PLEASE BRING YOUR OWN INSTRUMENT
Cost: £15.00

This workshop is geared towards ukulele bass players who are looking to invent a bass line that consists of more than just simple root notes and explore the various options of bass-line construction, focusing on two different styles of bass line: Latin and Swing. In the Latin element of the workshop, we’ll explore a few different types of Latin groove and how to achieve them; in the swing element we’ll explore bass lines that walk. Anyone attending should have a good knowledge of where your notes are on the ukulele bass and be proficient in providing a basic root and 5th bass line underneath a set of chord changes.

Leading a Jam

Provider:  Ken Middleton
Day: Saturday 17th June
Time: 11.00am-12.15pm
Place: St Andrew’s United Reformed Church
Level: Intermediate
Cost: £15.00

You are attending a festival and you have been asked to lead, or take part in, a jam session. There is no song book and those attending are from far and wide. What do you do? How do you include everyone? Do you have the confidence to take part in this sort of jam session? These are questions we will attempt to answer in this very practical class.

Jazz Improvisation

Provider:  Abe Lagrimas Jr
Day: Saturday 17th June
Time: 11.00am-12.15pm
Place: St Andrew’s United Reformed Church
Level: Intermediate/advanced
Cost: £15.00

Learn how to improvise over the jazz classic, Autumn Leaves, with minimal music theory knowledge!

Right-hand Techniques

Provider:  Uff and Dave
Day:  Saturday 17th June
Time:  11.00am-12.15pm
Place:  St Andrew’s United Reformed Church
Level:  Any
Cost:  £15.00

SOLD OUT

Right hand (or left!) strumming techniques are fundamental in ukulele playing. The techniques demonstrated in this workshop are what I believe make my playing, and hopefully yours, really come alive. As well as learning some basic strums to get started you will see demonstrated, and deconstructed, strums such as the split stroke, fan stroke, tremolo and scrape. Some of these strums may not be mastered in the workshop as they take time, though you will leave with a good understanding of how they work, how to use them and also diagrams of the individual strums. Worksheets will be provided.

Blues & Beyond

Provider:  Phil Doleman
Day:  Saturday 17th June
Time:  11.30am-12.45pm
Place:  Town Hall
Level:  Any
Cost:  £15.00

In this workshop we’ll look at the evolution of the blues from early riff-based forms to the 3 chord 12 bar pattern familiar to so many, but then we’ll go beyond into the beginnings of jazz. We’ll learn some classic blues songs, fat jazz chords, riffs and runs that really sound the business, whining string bends and double stops, and some killer endings and turnarounds (all without the tedious business of going down to the crossroads and selling your soul).

Folk & Fiddle Tunes

Provider:  Ben Rouse
Day:  Saturday 17th June
Time:  11.30am-12.45pm
Place:  Town Hall
Level:  Any
Cost:  £15.00

This is a fun and informal workshop exploring the wonderful world of folk ukulele, covering some of the most popular and beautiful folk and fiddle tunes, and teaching you some simple techniques to help you learn and adapt your own favourites. The workshop will include a folk tune from England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales, so there’s sure to be something for everyone. We will look at simple strumming patterns suited to folk music and some basic chord melody. A few basic chords and simple tab music reading is an advantage but not essential. The workshop will include singing for anyone who feels more comfortable singing than playing; a song booklet will be included.


Sunday Workshops

Technique, Tone & Taste

Provider:  Abe Lagrimas Jr II
Day:  Sunday 18th June
Time:  1.30-2.45pm
Place:  Bethesda Church
Level:  Advanced beginner/intermediate
Cost:  £15.00

Learn warm-ups that will improve your left hand speed, tone, and right hand fingerpicking exercises. Various strumming, or comping patterns will be discussed and applied to one of Abe’s original song from his book, “Jazz Ukulele: Comping, Soloing, Chord Melodies”.

Melody playing within the chords

Provider:  Uff and Dave
Day:  Sunday 18th June
Time:  1.30-2.45pm
Place:  Bethesda Church
Level:  Any
Cost:  £15.00

SOLD OUT

As wonderful as the ukulele sounds as an accompaniment for other instruments, the humble Uke can of course also be a great lead instrument itself. There are a number of different ways of playing melody on the Uke with one of the most popular techniques being the “pluck strum pluck strum” technique. In this workshop however, we will be learning a technique by which you will play the melody line and the chords simultaneously. We will work through an easy song with just four chords (or so you would think!) – a great old Irish folk song about a beautiful city called Liverpool called “The leaving of Liverpool”, a favourite of many Uke clubs. Hopefully you will be able to incorporate this technique into many other songs. If you’ve never heard any melody coming out of your ukulele before you certainly will by the end of this session.  Worksheets will be provided.

The Circle of Fifths – a musical Rosetta Stone!

Provider:  Phil Doleman
Day:  Sunday 18th June
Time:  1.30-2.45pm
Place:  Bethesda Church
Level:  Any
Cost:  £15.00

Discover why this simple diagram holds the secrets of transposing, working out chord progressions, playing by ear, song-writing, understanding key signatures, and how it can help you know what the next chord is going to be!  You’ll learn how to listen to songs and second guess what’s coming next, Work out songs from recordings in no time, and jam along like a pro.

Going Solo like a Rock Star!

Provider:  Ben Rouse
Day:  Sunday 18th June
Time:  2.00-3.15pm
Place:  The Somerset Arms
Level:  Intermediate/Advanced
Cost:  £15.00

This workshop is a full-on, in-your- face look at how to pull off exciting ukulele solos to wow your friends and audiences. Learn hammer-ons, pull offs and super cool licks to get you started on the road of showing off! If you’ve ever wanted to really rock out then this is the workshop for you. Not only will we look at scales and some simple solo licks, we will also look into how to make your performances come to life with rock faces, windmills and the odd ukulele spinning too. You must have a simple understanding of reading tabs and fingerpicking.

Ukulele Festival of Great Britain 2017

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