This workshop, held in the beautiful and historic buildings of St Edmund Hall of Oxford University is a mixed strings, wind and keyboard workshop for adult amateur musicians of any age and of ACMP intermediate standard and higher. Participants can expect to play in four or five different groups of reasonably well-matched players ranging from trios to large mixed chamber ensembles. They can expect different high quality coaches on most of the days so that they benefit from several approaches. One of the groups (at their choice) may be a chamber orchestra and one will be an instrument-group ensemble coached by an expert in that field. Groups and their main music selections are announced in advance, allowing time for preparation, but sight reading is also an important component of the week.
Each day, participants will enjoy between 4 and 5 hours of playing in an ensemble coached full time and will have a short performance opportunity in the daily evening recital of selected movements from the day’s work. The coaches aim to show players how, with good preparation and intelligent rehearsal, a reasonable performance standard can be achieved quite rapidly. It also gives the less experienced players a supportive environment in which to become battle-hardened for performance; an important take-away from a Kammermusik Workshop. Assistant Coaches (player-coaches) are also available to strengthen the groups as needed. Time is kept free in the afternoons and evenings for freelance playing. The final concert of the course, in which everyone will play something, will comprise highlights from the week’s work. On one evening some of the faculty perform a chamber music concert, which is always a highlight.
The program includes a small chamber orchestra. A special event this year is the European première of the late Colin Touchin’s Serenade No. 3 for Chamber Orchestra, scored for strings and double woodwind quintet to suit our and many other large chamber music workshops. This was commissioned by Kammermusik Workshops before the Covid pandemic. The work will have its world and US première at the Kammermusik Winter workshop in Santa Fe, NM in April and will be repeated at this workshop in Oxford, conducted by Roger Coull (leader of the distinguished Coull String Quartet and also an inspiring conductor).