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Pics from Extend Your Saxophone Skills course 02/04/12 Knuston Hall

QWales

Senior Member
Messages
722
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Suz the Sax

New Member
Messages
2
Thanks Mark
The pics and video are great. any chance you could e-mail me them as cant seem to be able to download video and pics that i saved to my computer were not as clear as they are here.
Sue :)
 

altoego

New Member
Messages
9
Thanks for great pics. I agree its an amazing course - and brill to see Debbie playing again - thanks.
 

Riversider

Member
Messages
58
(Sorry this is double posted, but probably should be here.) Thanks to Mark for the great photographs and for the video of my bald spot! Time to wear that porkpie hat I think.

I enjoyed this course a lot, and would certainly recommend it warmly. I met Saxyman, QWales and Pauline within an hour of arriving and made several other new friends.

The teachers are quite simply outstanding, combining firm guidance and great good humour. We learned a lot and we certainly laughed a lot. The programme offers a good mixture of instruction and exercises in the large group and playing practice in smaller groups, always as ensemble work —ie: reading a part sheet with maybe 3 or 4 other people playing different parts. More advanced sight-readers can take the more challenging parts, and everyone was extremely helpful and supportive to each other.

I found the sight-reading a bit daunting at first, because when it came time to play, we would start straight into pieces without a chance to study them in advance or to practice the fingering of difficult bits, which is what I do at home. But you do begin to pick it up, and you learn to skip that difficult bar until it comes round again and you get the hang of it a bit better. The main thing is to keep playing, to learn to find your place on the score, and to listen to how the tune is developing around you. First efforts (from everybody) could sound a bit chaotic, but in no time at all, the tune emerges more clearly and then (towards the end of the course) beautifully. To be contributing to that (if at times intermittently in my case) was a real thrill. The challenge is part of the point.

The scores were well chosen for our range of abilities and mostly in the easier (alto) keys of G and D. You could sign up for 20 minutes of individual tuition with a specific tutor if you wanted to, or had a specific problem. The tutors were always approachable and I think they tried to arrange the smaller playing groups so that no-one felt too out of their depth. (You begin the course by filling in a form describing how long you have been playing and what you’re looking to learn.)

I’d say this is the best (possibly the only) course for beginning players. The brochure specifies ‘early to intermediate’ players to ‘maximum playing ability Grade 5 approximately’ and you work hard. There was some time to hang out and play freely with others in the many available practice rooms, but the main focus is on formal group playing —ie: playing music arranged for saxophone ensembles. Much of this music was classical and new to me —and (forgive me Art Pepper) I loved it.

To conclude: the main thing to emphasise is the company and mutual support of fellow players, the great tutors and the friendly spirit they create, the intensity of the experience and the lovely country house surroundings. I travelled nearly 400 miles to get there and I’m going again next year.

—Riversider.
 

Suz the Sax

New Member
Messages
2
Hi Mark, thank you for the video post too. Debbie is such a beautiful player and i love her version of the 'Will You' sax solo from Hazel O'connor's Breaking glass. Thank you Debbie love it.

i totally agree with everything that has been posted about this course and more. i LOVE this course. i went for the first time last year, came back for more this year and have booked for next year. BRILLIANT!!
 
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QWales

Senior Member
Messages
722
Thanks Mark
The pics and video are great. any chance you could e-mail me them as cant seem to be able to download video and pics that i saved to my computer were not as clear as they are here.
Sue :)
Hi Sue, No problem, can't do it right now so if you PM me with your email address I'll make sure you get the pics. I think the vid was about 200Mb so I will try to find a way for you to be able to download it.
Cheers,
Mark
 

KnustonManager

New Member
Messages
1
How fantastic to read all the posts in this thread. As the manager of Knuston Hall, believe me you all created a great ambiance within which yet another course was able to flourish. It is difficult to get courses onto the website so far into the future as next year but pick up the phone and chat to us. The team will be delighted to help. Any queries, get in touch.
I won't give contacts details here as I may break the forum rules.
I hope to meet more of you very soon.
E
 

DJade

Member
Messages
31
OMG, I have one of those Chat clipboards. Great playing there by Debbie. Would love to try out the course (if only I'd known about it earlier for this time), but I don't even know which country I'll be in this time next year. Wouldn't it be lovely if they ran this several times a year.
 
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altoego

New Member
Messages
9
Hi DJade The course is fantastic and they do run several across the year, depending on your skill level. I don't have the dates to hand but will post later - or just call Knuston Hall and they will send you the year book. Good luck Glyn
 
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