Use the buttons to add items to your basket, then click "PROCEED" to continue to the next page.
We do not post out tickets. See faqs for more info.

Cecil Sharp House, 2 Regent's Park Road, London, NW1 7AY

Saturday 21st March 2015, Doors 9:30am. Workshops 10am-5pm. Evening gig 7pm-11pm All ages

Saturday 21st March 2015.
Cecil Sharp House. 2 Regents Park Road, London. NW1
Guests: CIAC BOUM (Poitou, France), Gaorsach Rapper (UK).
Doors 9:30am. Workshops 10am-5pm. Evening gig 7pm-11pm.
Good food, bar, sessions.
Queries? 0788 794 8853

Blowzabella is Andy Cutting – diatonic button accordion; Jo Freya – vocals, saxophone, clarinet; Paul James – bagpipes, saxophones; Gregory Jolivet – hurdy-gurdy; David Shepherd – violin; Barn Stradling – bass guitar; Jon Swayne – bagpipes, saxophone. The band make an inimitable, driving, drone-based sound played with a fabulous sense of melody, rhythmic expertise and sheer feeling. They compose their own music which is influenced by English and European traditional dance music. All the band members compose and many of their tunes are “standards” in the modern British/European folk repertoire and are played by people all over the world. Bands across Europe who experiment with folk music often cite Blowzabella as a major influence.

Blowzabella have been staging folk music and dance workshop events in Britain and abroad for 30 years. All the members of the band are highly experienced at teaching people of all ages and abilities. The band make a point of inviting up and coming home grown talent as well as staging many debut appearances in the UK for the best European folk dance bands around. Organised for the band by Paul James, the aim of their workshop events is always to encourage people of all ages and abilities to participate at whatever level they are comfortable with. There’s plenty for people with previous experience to enjoy and add to their knowledge and skills, but you don’t need to know anything about folk music or dance to participate. Many participants have gone on to form bands and dance groups as a result of attending these workshops.
£28.00 + £2.52 Booking fee = £30.52
£16.00 + £1.60 Booking fee = £17.60
£18.00 + £1.80 Booking fee = £19.80
£10.00 + £1.00 Booking fee = £11.00
£15.00 + £1.50 Booking fee = £16.50
£8.00 + £0.80 Booking fee = £8.80
CIAC BOUM. From Poitou west/central France. Beautiful music, imaginatively and powerfully played, impossible not to dance to. Christian Pacher : violon, accordéon diatonique, chant; Julien Padovani : accordéon chromatique, padokick, chant; Robert Thébaut : violon, guitare, chant.

GAORSACH RAPPER. Rapper sword is a distinctive type of competitive sword dance first developed and danced by miners in the pit villages of Tyneside in North East England. Gaorsach combine bags of energy with an exciting style which has created a huge buzz at many a festival.

Blowzabella play dance music composed and arranged by the band for a variety of English and European traditional dances. The dances are easy to pick up and you don’t have to be an expert to get involved, just have a go. If you are an experienced dancer there’s plenty to get stuck into. Many people choose not to dance and come along to watch and listen - and that’s fine too. The venue is set up with as much dancing space as possible with some seating around the outside. Seating can’t be reserved. Venue is disabled accessible. The evening will consist of a short performance by the Folk Big Band Workshop people, performances by our fantastic guest bands and, of course, Blowzabella. Doors open 7pm and it’ll finish at 11pm. There aren’t any formal intervals as such, it all just sort of happens. The band have done gigs like this for donkey’s years so you’re in safe hands.


Dance Workshops

10am-12pm. Dance Workshop. Jo Freya and Dave Shepherd - with Andy Cutting, Gregory Jolivet and Jon Swayne providing the music. Some great, but less well known English traditional dances and some of the European couple dances that Blowzabella have popularised over the last 30+ years. The aim of the workshop is to help you get the most from the evening dance. All ages and abilities. Beginners are welcome. There’s plenty for experienced dancers to learn too. Queries? or

2:30-4pm. Popular dances from central and western France with CIAC BOUM.

4-5pm. 60 Minute Rapper with Goarsach Rapper. Have a go at this exciting and fast moving sword dance from North East England.

Folk Big Band

10am – 1pm. Paul James & Barnaby Stradling.
Using simple, catchy folk dance tunes as a starting point, this workshop is about working together as a team to make a mighty big band noise that is more than the sum of its parts. Suitable for all ages, abilities, any instrument. No prior knowledge of folk music necessary. The aim is to create imaginative arrangements - using harmonies and riffs, textures and dynamics - that are interesting and fun to play, dance and listen to. You need to be of a standard where you can play a simple folk tune through at the right tempo, either by ear or by reading music. The Folk Big Band will perform at the evening dance. Music isn't available in advance as we will decide what we want to do together when we meet on the day. Queries?

Instrument & singing workshops. 2:30-4:30pm

Diatonic button accordion & melodeon (G/D). Andy Cutting. Suitable for intermediate and more advanced players. The basic standard required to get the most from this workshop is to be able to learn a simple folk dance tune by ear and play it at the right tempo with others. Queries? Email

Bagpipe Workshop (bagpipes in G). Jon Swayne. Introducing participants to English bagpipe repertoire, both traditional and recently composed, working mostly by ear, but music is available at the end. Work on technique and ornamentation relevant to that repertoire can be included. If time allows and the appropriate instruments are available, the workshop can enjoy playing polyphony with two, three or more lines, a form with which Jon has considerable experience. Suitable for conical bore mouth or bellows blown bagpipes in G (for example, border, Flemish and French pipes). Queries?

Bagpipes for beginners (bagpipes in G). Paul James. An hour of basic techniques for beginners. The participants can then join in with Jon’s workshop for the last hour if they wish. Queries?

Hurdy-Gurdy (hurdy-gurdies mainly in D but also G). Gregory Jolivet. Gregory is an experienced hurdy-gurdy teacher both in the traditional techniques and repertoire of central France and in more contemporary and improvisational approaches to playing the instrument. The basic standard required to get the most from this workshop is to be able to learn a simple folk dance tune by ear and play it at the right tempo with others. Queries? Email

Fiddle. Dave Shepherd. Mostly English traditional tunes and tips on rhythm and style. The basic standard required to get the most from this workshop is to be able to learn a simple folk dance tune by ear and play it at the right tempo with others. Some music will be available on the day. Queries? Email

Singing. Jo Freya. Taking traditional songs and singing them in harmony as a group. All ages and abilities welcome. No need to be able to read music. The emphasis is on creating a great sound by arranging these beautiful songs for the voices there. Queries?