Harmony singing retreat LEVEL 1 – the small group challenge

For singers who have never sung in a small group, but have always wanted to try. Develop your small group harmony singing skills as you work as a small ensemble. Limited to 16 singers.

Wychcroft House

"This is one of the best singing weekends I have ever been on. I paticularly liked the focus on breathing, technique, blending, etc. instead of spending most of the time learning new songs. I've taken away lots of new ideas." Harmony singing retreat (level 2), March 2019

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Friday 12 November 2021 5pm to Sunday 14 November 2021 2pm
Wychcroft House
South Park Lane
Redhill RH1 4NE

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This singing retreat is part of a series of three different levels aimed at beginners, intermediate and advanced. You can find out more about how the levels work by reading the Harmony singing retreats section on the workshop themes page.

This weekend is for those who have some harmony singing experience (possibly in a choir) and who want to try singing in a smaller group. A chance to refine your harmony singing skills and to have a go at singing one person to a part (if you want to). This is a training weekend and will include work on breath, blend, listening, etc.

On this weekend you will:

  • Wychcroft House, Surrey improve your singing and harmonising skills
  • learn to get the best out of your voice
  • get feedback on your singing and harmony skills
  • relish a challenge and seize the chance to work in a small ensemble
  • be prepared to look and listen to yourself carefully
  • step up for a full-on weekend of hard, but rewarding work

This weekend course is limited to a maximum of 16 singers. This is so Chris can give more attention to individuals. There will be some training on breathing, voice production, vocal qualities, etc. However, we will do most of the work using harmony songs drawn from a range of traditions across the globe. All songs will be taught by ear and there will be no sheet music used.

This is your chance to explore your voice in a safe environment with a supportive bunch of like-minded singers. All of whom want to explore and stretch their harmony singing abilities. Serious work, but in a fun style!

Wychcroft House Wychcroft, the Southwark Diocesan Training Centre, is a Victorian house 22 miles south of London, set in the heart of the Surrey countryside near Bletchingley and five miles from Redhill station. It is surrounded by countryside (and sheep!). There are footpaths enabling you to explore the area or simply walk and absorb the tranquillity. Information regarding walks are available at Wychcroft.

Wychcroft lounge
Wychcroft has 23 bedrooms,a mix of twins and singles, all with shared bathrooms (no en-suites). All rooms have a wash basin, vanity mirror with light and shaver point. We will have the entire main house to ourselves over the weekend. The weekend includes all meals, tuition and tea/ coffee breaks.

Wychcroft has a reputation for providing high quality home cooked food. All meals are prepared onsite using food sourced, as much as possible, from local suppliers and Fairtrade producers. Wychcroft does not have a license to sell alcoholic drinks, however guests are more than welcome to bring their own. Wine glasses are available. and drinks can be chilled in the guests' fridge situated in the 'Pantry'.

Wychcroft countryside The 'Pantry' provides facilities for guests to make drinks and is open twenty-four hours. The Pantry is stocked with many different teas and coffees along with juices and milk. The fridge can be used by guests for chilling their own drinks or food. A microwave is also provided.

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Comments from 2019's Harmony singing retreat (level 2) weekend:

"I learnt so much more than I expected. The encouragement and guidance from you was so clear and purposeful. The 'masterclass' set-up really works and makes me a gentler singer and a much better listener. Felt very fond of the group."

"I liked the relaxed atmosphere with plenty of humour, but with a strong focus on giving us the tools to continue our understanding and practice of harmony singing. It was great to meet others with the same love of small group harmony."

"Thank you very much for an excellent weekend in Buckden. I thoroughly enjoyed the songs, the sessions, the small groups and the work we did with your good-humoured but exacting teaching. I got so much out of it. I think the quartet masterclasses were excellent and all were interesting. There was always something to pay attention to."

"Your infectious enthusiasm and ability to offer the right balance between support and challenge. I needed the challenge, the opportunity to become more conscious of how I sing, how I can adjust and modify my voice, how to shift from 'me' to 'you'. The venue was excellent – comfortable, good food, location and a real sense of history all around."

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