American harmony singing traditions

Learn songs from a wide range of American harmony traditions in this amazing Derbyshire venue.

Willersley Castle, Derbyshire

"What an amazing sound you got us to create ... you're a very talented and wonderful person. I did love participating and will certainly join you again when possible." American Harmonies weekend, Peterborough 2019

Not been on one of Chris's singing before? You might like to check out some frequently asked questions.

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Friday 23 October 2020 6pm to Sunday 25 October 2020 2pm
Willersley Castle Hotel
Cromford DE4 5JH
Matlock, Derbyshire

Cost: £220 (superior twin/double)/ £210 (standard twin/double); £225 (single occupancy) PER PERSON
if booked and paid for by 24 July 2020, otherwise £20 per person more


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View from Willersley Castle, Cromford

Sir Richard Arkwright, the great industrialist, commissioned Willersley Castle in the 1790s. You can still see many of the original features today. The Castle overlooks the Derwent Valley World Heritage site. There are plenty of excellent walks in the area and you will have time on Saturday afternoon to explore.

The main hotel has 30 bedrooms, extensive grounds and a heated indoor swimming pool. You can go on a virtual tour of the hotel, rooms and grounds on the Willersley Castle website.

bedroom, Willersley Castle

The superior rooms all have fantastic views over the Derwent Valley. All bedrooms at Willersley Castle include tea/coffee making facilities and a hairdryer. There is also a lift in the castle serving both first- and second-floor bedrooms.

Willersley Castle oval stairwell A fabulous weekend of singing from a wide range of American harmony traditions: shape note, gospel, Appalachian folk, 1960s folk revival, country & western, glee clubs, work songs and more!

Singing sessions will begin with warm-ups and simple songs. This will lead into songs in several parts that offer the rewarding challenges. There will also be opportunities on Saturday afternoon to explore the local area and relax.

Old mill near Willersley Castle Chris has carefully chosen the songs which are all arranged for voices only. He teaches everything by ear so there is no need to read music.

Chris will make a recording of the workshop available free afterwards. This will remind you of the weekend and impress you with the sound we create together!

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Feedback from 2019's weekend at Willersely Castle:

"Once again Chris, you have excelled with your incredible ability to teach us complex harmonies from different cultures and produce some fabulous singing at the end of the weekend – thank you!"

"We had so much fun learning the songs and with such a great group of very friendly, interesting people! Concentrating to learn the harmonies and then being part of such a lovely sound when it all comes together is enormously therapeutic ... and great fun!! You are such a skilled and inspirational teacher please don't ever stop!"

"This was my first ever experience of a singing workshop and I thoroughly enjoyed it. You were so relaxed and friendly and funny, I felt my nerves quickly start to disappear. I was amazed at the skill with which you coaxed those sounds out of us, and the lovely manner you had with us. You never lost patience or got irritated with us, and I really felt my confidence grow."

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