FOLK SONG & NATURE CONNECTION EASTER WEEKEND WORKSHOP
With Sam Lee, Naomi Hannam and many other Musical names yet to announce
March 25th – 27th 2016
£320 fully inclusive of all accommodation and food Embercombe, Devon
Bursaries available for students and those on low-wage by application
Join folk singer, wilderness explorer and ethnographer Sam Lee alongside Naomi Hannam; Nature guide and facilitator for an immersive bank holiday, fully catered residential weekend in the idyllic location of Devon’s beacon of sustainable education Embercombe.
We will be learning about the relationship between folk songs, nature and the land. Not only a musical journey in the art of repertoire, song lineage and singing techniques the weekend this will be a unique exploration of how singing and understanding the deeper aspects of folk song and ones own natural voice can be accessed through the practical skills of nature awareness and observation, immersion in the land and listening to the natural world.
This pioneering concept marrying song and the ‘way of nature’ will focus on the art of singing through developing your relationship with nature and re-wilding oneself in a stunning part of the English landscape. Full yurt accommodation and organic catering will be provided. For bookings please email email@example.com
There will also be a concert held on the Saturday night featuring many special guests
About the Course and what we will be doing:
We humans are innately musical beings likewise we are all nature lovers ancestrally born with both surrounding our lives. Where our individual relationship with these vital aspects of our heritage started, faded or reignited, is different for every person but long ago the connection between the two was inseparable. Nowadays we experience song and nature in so many complex ways this weekend serves to explore a journey of reigniting the senses of joy and connection that arise from the practice of both. We will be spending lots of time both outdoors and supported by Embercombe’s state of the art resource and training center (especially if the weather is bad or extremely cold) to enjoy our studies
We will be working with and around fires, we will be learning about the healing and edible properties of the plants in the area, we will be learning about the edible and healing properties of songs from the area! Questions will be asked about our own relationship with the natural world.. telling our stories of our formative experiences within nature and likewise how we came to find out we are all singers. We will learn to use our ears in new ways to listen to the sounds of the land and read that manuscript composed by the wind, the water, the birds and the trees. We will take that script as our training to explore our own skills as improvising singers and interpreters of ancient songs. We are privileged to be coinciding this weekend with the start of the annual spring explosion of the dawn chorus in an area with one of the highest diversities of song bird (passerine) species in the UK (considered by ornithologists to be the land with the finest bird song in the world) Our soundscape we will be practicing in will be as rich as can be found. We will also be connecting with the quiet afforded in nature, the importance of silence within nature observation and within the expression of song we will be developing our skill of listening and removing our dependence on sight to read further into the world around us. This is a weekend designed to find the elemental spark within us and satiate the primal urges to re-root oneself in pristine landscape, song and company.
Information on the course leaders:
Sam Lee: Sam’s journey into folk song came very much through his love of nature. A child of the Forest School Camps movement and then a student of Ray Mears in his late teens, Sam progressed through art school focusing his art and time on indigenous cultures and the connection between man and the land. This led to his studying Anthropology and then finding his voice in British vernacular folk song where he has combined his ethnomusicological research with his love of music through reviving the lost art of song collecting in his work amongst the British and Irish Gypsy Traveller community. Founder of the Song Collectors Collective Sam has also recorded two critically acclaimed albums one being nominated for the much-coveted Mercury Music Prize. Sam has always believed in the connection between folk song and the landscape and has trained under some of the last Nomadic people of the British Isles in song and voice. His apprenticeship with the Scottish Traveller Stanley Robertson and more recent friendships with G&T singers born on the land and living in close harmony with nature has taught Sam a deep sense of respect and vital connection that this folk material has with our old ways. For more info www.samleesong.co.uk and www.songcollectors.org
Naomi Hannam: A creative facilitator, nature guide, fire maker, forager, singer, planter of seeds and much more. Her diverse tool kit draws on teachers from across Europe to connect people to nature, themselves and community through direct experience.
From an early age Naomi’s passion and deep love of the outdoors has found her sleeping under the stars, singing around fires, adventuring with little in her pack and making from only what is in the natural world. It is this magic, simplicity, awe and wonder that she strives to share and use to empower and connect people. Naomi has a wealth of experience working with people of all ages outdoors. After graduating in the arts in 2009 she began the journey of developing and combining the creative arts, bush craft, nature connection and youth work. She has worked as a core member of Embercombe’s Education team, has lead groups for over 10 years within Forest School Camps along with a number of other youth organisations as well as lecturing and working with Plymouth and Exeter universities.
Participants will need to bring all weather gear and torches. All yurts are heated by wood burning stoves. All dietary needs are catered for. If you have any special needs or accessibility concerns please contact us to see how we can help.
Course begins on bank holiday Friday morning and ends Sunday afternoon (Sunday dinner and Monday breakfast is available as an add on for those who wish to remain for a last informal night together)
Embercombe, Higher Ashton, Exeter, Devon EX6 7QQ
Mercury Prize nominated folk singer, song collector and promoter (of BBC award winning Nest Collective).View Artist