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Fri, 27 Oct


Prior's Field School

Big Workshop Weekend with Dipper, Malkin, Moss & Moore

Join our four talented and engaging tutors for a residential music workshop weekend in beautiful surroundings in the Surrey Hills

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Big Workshop Weekend with Dipper, Malkin, Moss & Moore
Big Workshop Weekend with Dipper, Malkin, Moss & Moore

Time & Location

27 Oct 2023, 16:00 BST – 29 Oct 2023, 16:00 GMT

Prior's Field School, Priorsfield Rd, Godalming GU7 2RH, UK

About the event

**All rooms for the weekend are now fully booked. You can still register if you would like to join our waiting list or don't need accommodation.**

The programme provides a variety of workshops for players of any acoustic musical instrument. Suitable for players with a good basic knowledge of how to play their instrument(s). Ability to learn tunes by ear is an advantage, but music can be provided if requested.

Workshop themes (please see Workshop Sessions Overview below for the most current details)

  • Instrument-specific: technique, phrasing, rhythm, groove.
  • Ensembles: multi-instrument groups, playing together, harmonies and accompaniments
  • Making tunes your own: expanding your repertoire, composing, exploring new variations on common tunes

About the tutors

  • John Dipper (fiddle, viola d'amore, concertina): a consummate musician and a much sought after tutor at academic institutions and folk festivals.
  • Dave Malkin (guitar, voice): composer, guitarist, producer working in music for film and TV. Part of duo Dipper Malkin. Their debut album was included in The Sunday Times' best 100 albums of 2017.
  • Archie Churchill-Moss (melodeon, diatonic accordion): won BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Award as part of Moore, Moss, Rutter. Teaches at Leeds Conservatoire and Halsway Manor.
  • Tom Moore (fiddle, viola, guitar, percussion): composer, producer and an in-demand session player. He and Archie currently perform as a duo.


Full Board Options:

  • Single room with ensuite shower room and WC: £240 per person
  • Single room with shared bathroom and WC: £220 per person

Price inclusive of accommodation, all meals, tuition, concert and ceilidh:

  • Your choice of workshops with the tutors
  • Two nights’ accommodation in comfortable single rooms
  • All meals, tea, coffee, biscuits, soft drinks from Friday evening to Sunday lunch (special dietary requirements catered for)
  • Tutors' concert and ceilidh on Saturday night, with highly-renowned caller Emma Wooders
  • Spacious workshop facilities
  • Late night music sessions

No Accommodation Option:

  • All meals, workshops, sessions, concert and ceilidh: £150 per person


  • Under 25s: Limited number of discounted places for under 25s (under 18s must be accompanied by a responsible adult).
  • Couples: There are no double or twin rooms, but we can offer a discount if you are booking accommodation as a couple.

Contact us to find out more about discounted places.

Workshop Sessions Overview

The tutors have put their heads together to come up with workshop topics that will be suitable for all the instruments that participants are bringing.

Workshops suitable for all instruments

There will be some mix and match sessions, such as:

  • Dave and Tom - playing for dancing as they’ve done loads of it together
  • John and Dave - how they (Dipper Malkin) go about arranging a tune, talking through a couple of pieces and the thought process behind them.

Archie will be running the composition workshop focussing on understanding the importance of the rhythmic component to a melodic line. Breaking the melody down into its pitch and rhythmic properties as a starting point for the participants to write their own trad. style tunes.

Dave also suggested a talk / listening session which is a kind of brief history of English folk music. It could be quite a nice break from playing your instruments all day.

With more ideas being discussed, they’re likely to offer a choice of workshop topics that you can vote for at the start of the weekend.

Workshops that are more instrument-specific

Bowed strings

John will look at how to use different grooves to allow your tune playing to excite and delight!  Bow control will also be covered - looking at how to make your bow behave - to control and use the bow to its full advantage and create the sound you want. He will also focus on tone production and techniques to make a tune fit your fingers and enable you to breathe new life into a melody, lift a performance and push the boundaries of a tune.

Tom will focus on teaching some of the more obscure traditional tunes, while tackling appropriate bowing, ornamentation and feel. He will explore how to make a tune ‘groove’ even while playing fewer notes, with particular attention to English Jigs and 3/2 Hornpipes.

Tom will also host a fiddler’s clinic where he will diagnose fiddle woes and advise on your practice or performance troubles!

Guitar & other plucked strings

Dave’s guitar-specific class will be on technique, functional harmony, flat-picking and arranging English tunes for plectrum guitar and harmonising tunes. It should be made clear that he is going to be “unrelentingly rude” to anyone who turns up without a plectrum unless it’s Martin Carthy. He may break the classes into 2 parts, one that is really guitar focused and one that’s more music theory based.

Melodeon / Diatonic Accordion & other accordions

Archie will lead a workshop on playing with groove.

This isn’t the final list of workshop sessions, but I hope it will give you an idea of what to expect.

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