Early Music Week at Pinewoods

August 15 - 22, 2015

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Program Description

Early Music Week 2015
Photo by John Sidtis

Over the Moon and Under the Sun:
Exploration and Innovation

Imagine the stunningly beautiful setting of Pinewoods Camp as a base for exploring early music in all its delightful and challenging forms, coupled with English country dancing and historic dance. As classes unfold through the week, we will explore and discover the innovation and creativity that lie behind some of the world’s most vibrant and compelling music, listening and playing with deeper understanding, while dancing together and enjoying all that Pinewoods has to offer.

Instrumentalists may focus intensively on their primary instruments, while also finding time to try something completely new and enjoying the opportunity to play or sing with others in mixed ensembles. Singers can delve into early music repertoire in small groups, sing in a chorus or mixed consort, and try an introductory instrumental class. Dancers will find classes in advanced English country dancing and historic dance, as well as daily warm-ups and yoga sessions, and those wishing to expand their musical horizons are invited to take instrumental or vocal classes. Everyone is invited to enjoy English country dancing, with instruction during the day for all levels. This elegant, low-impact, fun and welcoming style of participatory dance is the highlight of every evening, with expert leaders and dance musicians. All are warmly encouraged to participate.

Early Music Week 2015
Photo by Paul Johnson

Early Music Week 2015 offers challenges and opportunities to players, singers and dancers at every level, from beginners to the highly experienced. Our outstanding faculty includes active professionals and acclaimed teachers of early winds (recorders, reeds and brass), strings (viola da gamba, violin, vielle, and rebec), harpsichord, harp, voice, and dance. There are morning ensembles at all levels, choirs and consorts and a variety-filled afternoon of special topics. Classes include music from the medieval, renaissance and baroque eras as well as world music (from North African, Mediterranean and Balkan regions and Scottish/Gaelic traditions), and contemporary repertoire.

  • Instrumentalists at all experience levels on recorder, winds (reeds, capped reeds), brass (cornetti, shawms), and strings (viols, violin and other bowed strings, harp) will have leveled ensembles in the morning, opportunities for diverse afternoon electives, and consorts ranging from the intermediate player to the most advanced.
  • Singers of all abilities will benefit from vocal technique and repertoire classes, chorus and mixed ensembles with instruments.
  • Advanced players and singers may choose to apply to join the Accademia, an afternoon intensive focusing on late 16c. – early 17c. repertoire for mixed instruments and voices. The week will culminate with a mini-concert.
  • Those wishing to try a new instrument can take custom-tailored introductory classes in voice, recorder, viola da gamba, bagpipe, and harp, with instruments provided.
  • English country dancers and historic dance enthusiasts can participate in daily dance classes at an appropriate level and nightly dance parties with stellar music and leadership. A special camper-led evening allows students to play and teach.
  • The week closes with a world-class faculty concert and student performances before a final banquet and celebration.

Experience this in-depth music and dance week surrounded by exceptional natural beauty, with time for relaxation, swimming, hiking, canoeing and delicious home-cooked meals in the open-air dining hall. What better way to get inside music, and to bond with others of like mind, than to play, sing, dance, and learn together in this magical environment?

-- Jan Elliott and Larry Zukof, Program Co-Directors

Special Courses

Also offered during this week: Accademia with Sarah Mead and Lisa Terry and English Dance Musicians Course with Jacqueline Schwab. Separate registration is required for each of these.

For Viol Players

Lisa Terry will be the Viol Maven for Early Music Week this summer. She'll have a supply of nylon strings to sell, a few Sensicore strings to lend, and the expertise to get your pegs turning and your soundposts upright. See the Viol Maven each day during breakfast and lunch to make an appointment before first morning or afternoon class. Please read Viol Survival Tips, and put them in practice BEFORE camp!

Scholarship Opportunities

In addition to the scholarships available through CDSS, summer scholarships are offered by Early Music America (deadline: April 15), American Recorder Society (deadline: April 15) and The Viola da Gamba Society of America (deadline: April 15).

Comments from some recent participants:

  • Outstanding! Sang things I never knew I was capable of.
  • So amazing what we learned and accomplished.
  • This was the most I have ever learned in a dance class.
  • It was as close to perfect as I can think of.
  • Great positive energy. Had a great time!
  • Loved my week here. Will be back next year!
  • A wonderful safe haven for my senses.
  • Extremely informative, interactive and innovative classes.

Daily Schedule

7:45-8:15 Hot Breakfast served cafeteria style
8:15-8:45 Cold Breakfast Coffee/Tea available
8:30-8:50 General Morning Warmup and Recorder Warm-up
9:00-10:30 AM Instrument Classes
11:00-12:00 Dance Classes
12:00-12:30 Free time: Swimming, Bookstore staffed
12:30 Lunch
2:00-3:15 1st PM Class
3:35-4:45 2nd PM Class
5:00-5:30 Tea
5:30-6:20 Free time: Informal camper readings, Swimming, Bookstore staffed, Side-by-Side Readings
  Faculty rehearsals
6:30 Dinner
7:45 Mini Presentations
8:15 All Camp Dance
9:45-10:45 Special Events

VIDEO: Here's what Early Music Week at Pinewoods is all about!  (View a larger version)

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