This page describes the training workshops that are run by The Society of Recorder Players.  These workshops are open to all, members and non-members.

If you would like to run one in your branch or on your own, please see the Guidance Document, which gives full details of how to organise a workshop.

If there are other topics you would like to see included, please contact the Training Co-ordinator trainingatsrpdotorgdotuk.

March 2019

Sat 23Mar2019

Level 2 Conducting with Moira Usher


Sat 30Mar2019

Gabrieli with Philip Thorby

Tonbridge Methodist Church, Higham Lane, Tonbridge TN10 4JG


Sat 30Mar2019

Unbarred Music with Moira Usher

Greenfield Primary School, Gwendoline Drive, Countesthorpe LE8 5SG


We’ll be looking at the character of all the main dances in the suite – Allemande, Courante, Sarabande, Gigue, Gavotte, Minuet, Chaconne & Pasacaille.  Not only will we play a little of each of these, we will learn the basic steps of some of them and watch on video a couple of super-star dancers.   All music is provided – just bring a treble recorder and some soft-soled shoes.  If you think you can’t dance, just get involved in some rhythmic walking!

Tutor – Evelyn Nallen

This is designed both for beginners and more experienced players to have a day playing with just bass instruments.  The day will be split into 4 x 1¼ hour sessions.  First session – beginners only to learn basic technique and the bass clef.  Session 2 onwards –  more experienced players to join and play pieces especially arranged for bass instruments, with beginners playing a simple part in the ensemble.

NB During term time, Janice can only run these days on a Sunday

Tutor – Janice Ormerod

There are two levels of course offered.  Level 1 for those who have never conducted and would like to know what it is all about, and Level 2 for those who have some experience but would like to improve.

Level 1

It is assumed that anyone applying to join the Level 1 workshop is able to play the recorder, even at a very basic level, reads music and has attended some SRP meetings.

Level 2

This workshop needs 10 (max 12) people to allow for two quartets plus conductor. (Players only are welcome to make up numbers). It is assumed that anyone applying to join the Level 2 workshop is comfortable with the following :

  • can conduct 2, 3, 4 in a bar.
  • can follow a score
  • has an understanding of the basic SRP repertoire
  • has an understanding of the ranges of the recorders

Tutors – Moira Usher, Colin Touchin

Let’s demystify ornamentation. Consider how tastes in recorder-playing have changed in the last 50 years; what were they like 300 years ago?  How much ornamentation do we think Mr Handel would have expected to hear from his recorder players?  Was it really in the Italian style?  (Were there any Italian recorder players in England at this time?) According to one very thorough and reliable source, we only need to know 2 ornaments to decorate all this repertoire.  Music will be provided, including some from said original source.  Ornamentation can be easy and enjoyable – honest!

Tutors – Evelyn Nallen, Moira Usher

The breadth and depth of Byrd’s fantasias represent the pinnacle of English sixteenth century consort music. In this workshop we will explore and play a range of Byrd’s works, particularly the fantasias, and place them in their historical context. All music will be provided.

Tutor – Anne Martin

The art of playing French Baroque music as it was intended, with all the frills and furbelows that a composer of that period would have expected from players of their music. This is an opportunity to learn about French style and ornamentation, in music by composers such as Boismortier and Hotteterre.

Gabrieli’s  2 and 3 choir canzonas are masterpieces of polychoral music full of light and shade, grandeur, dancing rhythms and singing melodies. During the course of the day, we will study, in depth, some of the finest of these.  As well as conducting, Philip will give some historical and musical background to this fascinating repertoire.

Tutor – Philip Thorby

Brush up on your technique (or acquire one!)  The importance of breathing, how to practice –   the list is endless.  Have access to an expert who will take you through the basics of playing your recorder well.  Ask the questions you have always wanted to ask.

Tutors – Helen Hooker

For those who learned to play but never had the lessons!  Have you ever wondered: What does the conductor mean when they talk about the key change?  Why do those notes have a 3 above them?  What is a chord?  Come to a theory workshop and find out.

The day will cover rhythm, pitch and basic harmony.

Tutors – Moira Usher, Sandra Foxall

A chance to play, sing and dance music from the 1500s following England’s transition from a Catholic to a Protestant state, from Henry toElizabeth.  We will follow the strands of church music, madrigals and basic dance steps through this century.

Tutor – Moira Usher

An opportunity to try the dances that you may have been playing, such as the Pavan, Galliard, Almain, Canaries, and Branles. There would be the possibility of playing for the dancing, but please discus this with the tutor first.

Tutors – Chris and Jo Saunders

Explore the art of playing Renaissance music written without bar lines.  Feel the freedom this brings when playing music not originally constrained by this modern invention! The workshop will involve learning to play Renaissance music (e.g. Fantasias) from a modern, unbarred edition. By doing this, you will hear how the phrases are shaped and how they fit together in a way quite unlike music from later periods.

Tutors – Moira Usher, Alyson Lewin

Last updated 3 September 2018