19-25 AUGUST 2024
Currently available places:
Violin: 16 of 16 – Viola: 6 of 6 – Cello: 5 of 5
Double bass: 3 of 3 – Flute: 3 of 3 – Oboe: 2 of 2
Clarinet: 2 of 2 – Bassoon: 2 of 2 – Horn: 4 of 4
Trumpet: 2 of 2 – Trombone: 3 of 3 – Tuba: 1 of 1
Timpani/Percussion: 2 of 2
- A friendly orchestral course for adults and young people in the stunningly beautiful south eastern corner of Sicily.
- Our base is the baroque town Scicli (pronounced Shee-klee!) with a concert there at the end of the week.
- Enjoy the superb history, architecture, beaches, food and hospitality of this unspoilt region!
- If you know the TV series ‘Inspector Montalbano’ then you will already be familiar with this area.
- Spouses / partners / children / friends are most welcome, and (non-playing ones) are exempt from the course fee.
Peter Fender is the conductor, Stephanie Waite the leader (see About Us for more info). In the past we have performed with the following soloists: Yuri Sabatini (tenor), Norma Ritchie (mezzo-soprano), Julian Fish (violin), Abigail Dance (violin), Ian Cumming (trumpet), Katy Noland (clarinet) and Janina Byrne (flute); and also with the Sicilian choir Coro Enarmonia.
See the list above for currently required instruments. We have players of a variety of standards across the orchestra, including professional.
There will be five or six rehearsals during the week (in Scicli) and the concert will be on the Saturday, preceded by an additional late afternoon rehearsal.
There will be a room which you can use to play chamber music – chamber music coaching may be available should you want it.
The programme will be confirmed when we have a better idea of the size of the orchestra, but, as a guide, we have played music of chamber orchestra size (or slightly larger) by composers such as Beethoven, Mozart, Puccini, Rossini, Elgar, Haydn, Ravel, Vivaldi and Bartok. We have also on occasions played some lighter music (for example, by Leonard Cohen, John Lunn and Elton John).
You will be spending time in the Val di Noto, and particularly in the town of Scicli, a UNESCO World Heritage Site with a town centre which is a fine example of late baroque architecture.
As well as the musical side of the week, there will be plenty of time to explore – whether your passion is history, architecture, beaches or food. Or you could just chill out with a granita or a glass of local wine in a wonderfully relaxing atmosphere!
There will be optional extra trips arranged to local places of interest. Previous trips have included: Donnafugata Castle, Montalbano’s house at ‘Marinella’ (really Punta Secca), the beautiful city Ragusa a meal (including fresh ricotta) on a working dairy farm and an evening at an agriturismo with wine and arancini talks/demonstrations. A small supplement to cover the cost of transport will be requested during the week from each person going on each trip. The beach is a short bus ride away.
There are three costs involved (apart from general costs relating to food etc):
- Course: the standard course fee is £300. Reductions are available (for example, a £30 discount if you are a student or pay before the end of February 2024). Please see the Cost page for full details.
- Travel: you must book and pay for your own travel.
- Accommodation: we can arrange bed & breakfast accommodation for you in local apartments, or you can arrange your own accommodation. Please see the Full Information page for details.
NB: Large instruments: players of large instruments are eligible for help with the cost of transporting their instrument – alternatively we may be able to hire (for a small fee) an instrument for you in Sicily. Please enquire.