Festival Fringe

National Festival venues and various locations across the City Centre

Free

 

Festival Fringe

There's lots to see and do beyond the main stages of our annual National Festival. Make the most of your session, day, or week!

Right across the week performers can get involved with pop-up performances on stages across the City Centre, as well as loads of different workshops and hands-on sessions led by professional musicians and leading arts organisations. 

There really is something for everyone!

Take a look at the Programme tab above to see the full session timetable of what happened across each day, and head over to National Festival to see what went down on our Main Stages!

 

Festival Fringe

Performer Workshops July 2017

 

SingMaker with Ex Cathedra

    • Tuesday 4 July
    • Morning & Afternoon Sessions
    • Festival Tent
      City Centre Gardens
    • Led by:
    • Ex Cathedra
    • Suitable for singers of any age or ability
    • Duration: 1 hour
Book Now

Do you lead a group that loves to sing? This is for them!

Ex Cathedra’s SingMaker team leads a fun, fast paced and dynamic workshop of songs written by the team members themselves all about the joy of singing together.
Their award-winning education team has taken these workshops to schools and festivals across the UK and further afield to schools in Thailand, China, New Zealand, Singapore and Uganda.
To complement the workshops, the team has produced interactive CDs for use in the classroom and at home.

Session 1: 11:00 - 12:00 FULL

Session 2: 15:45 - 16:45

Delivered in partnership with:
Ex Cathedra

 

Ex Cathedra has an award-winning education and participation programme working across Birmingham, the UK and internationally. The education and participation work has developed to become a leader in its field. The team is passionate about engaging people in life enhancing, accessible, meaningful and enjoyable singing activities, bringing the extraordinary well-being benefits of singing to participants, and developing vocal skills and musicianship.

Infinity live

    • Wednesday 5 July
    • Morning & Afternoon Sessions
    • CBSO Centre
    • Led by: Richard Frostick
Register Interest »


Led by teacher, workshop leader and choral director Richard Frostick, Infinity LIVE is a FREE music workshop for music educators and their students based on the Music for Youth and NUT's  Back to Bass resource pack. Bring your class to this special day of music making, which includes:

  • A hands-on music workshop in the CBSO Centre led by Richard Frostick - teacher, workshop leader and choral director. Classes are asked to prepare a short musical phrase or rhythm in advance of the event that will be used in the workshop.

  • Free tickets which grant unlimited access to Music for Youth's National Festival where you can hear groups of inspiring young musicians perform in Birmingham's most prestigious concert halls. Check out the full programme here.


Session 1: 10:30 - 12:00

Session 2: 13:00 - 14:30

Massed Vocal Workshop with the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain

    • Wednesday 5 July
    • Morning & Afternoon Sessions
    • Festival Tent
      City Centre Gardens
    • Led by: Esther Jones
    • Suitable for singers of any age
    • Duration: 1 hour
Book Now

Improve vocal technique, musicianship and ensemble skills

Come and join choral specialist Esther Jones and singers from the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain (NYCGB) in a high-energy workshop packed with games, activities and NYCGB’s signature vocal mash-ups designed to develop vocal technique, musicianship and ensemble skills.

Session 1: 10:45 - 11:45 FULL

Session 2: 14:45 - 15:45 FULL

Delivered in partnership with:
National Youth Choirs of Great Britain

The National Youth Choirs of Great Britain exist to discover and foster exceptional musical talent, to provide inspirational teaching and guidance, and to thrill audiences with passionate and innovative music-making.

Play with the Pros with Her Majesty's Royal Marines Collingwood

    • Thursday 6 July
    • Morning & Afternoon Sessions
    • ICC Hall/Foyer
      Symphony Hall
    • Led by: Her Majesty's Royal Marines Collingwood
    • Suitable for wind and brass players, aged 11 and above of any ability
    • Duration: 1 hour
Book Now

Get a feel for what it's really like to work in a professional band

Musicians from the Band of Her Majesty’s Royal Marines Plymouth lead a typical Marine's rehearsal. Participants will meet professional musicians who will guide them through some light repertoire, providing a high quality musical experience and shared sense of achievement.

Session 1: 11:30 - 12:30

Session 2: 15:00 - 16:00 FULL

Delivered in partnership with:
Royal Marines Band Service

 

The Royal Marines Band Service is one of the finest military music organisations in the world, offering training to the highest standards including a fully funded BMus degree programme. RM Musicians travel the globe playing on some of the world’s biggest stages.

Massed Vocal Workshop with the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain

    • Thursday 6 July
    • Morning & Afternoon Sessions
    • Festival Tent
      City Centre Gardens
    • Led by: Dominic Peckham
    • Suitable for singers of any age
    • Duration: 1 hour
Book Now

Improve vocal technique, musicianship, and ensemble skills

Come and join choral specialist Dominic Peckham and singers from the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain (NYCGB) in a high-energy workshop packed with games, activities and NYCGB’s signature vocal mash-ups designed to develop vocal technique, musicianship and ensemble skills.

Session 1: 10:45 - 11:45

Session 2: 14:45 - 15:45 FULL

Delivered in partnership with:
National Youth Choirs of Great Britain

 

The National Youth Choirs of Great Britain exist to discover and foster exceptional musical talent, to provide inspirational teaching and guidance, and to thrill audiences with passionate and innovative music-making.

Making Jazz Happen with the National Youth Jazz Orchestra

    • Friday 7 July
    • Morning & Afternoon Sessions
    • Level 5 Foyer
      Symphony Hall
    • Led by: Phil Meadows
    • Suitable for mixed instrumental musicians of any age or ability
    • Duration: 1 hour
Book Now

Get practical, guided, un-scary experience of improvisation

Come and join the members of the National Youth Jazz Orchestra (NYJO) led by NYJO London Music Director, and saxophonist, Phil Meadows for a practical session, lifting the lid on improvisation. Play alongside some the UK’s most talented jazz musicians who will help you to learn a new piece from scratch, and explore its harmonic possibilities – using just your ears!.

Session 1: 11:00 - 12:00

Session 2: 15:00 - 16:00 FULL

Delivered in partnership with:
National Youth Jazz Orchestra

The National Youth Jazz Orchestra (NYJO) is Britain’s longest-running organisation for young people up to 25 playing big-band jazz. Formed 50 years ago to fill a gap in jazz education, the charity’s mission is to perform exceptional music to excite audiences and engage with young people of all backgrounds around the country.

Shake it Up, Make it Up! with The Big Shake-Up

    • Friday 7 July
    • Morning & Afternoon Sessions
    • Festival Tent
      City Centre Gardens
    • Led by: The Big Shake-Up
    • Suitable for wind and brass players of any age or ability
    • Duration: 1.5 hours
Book Now

Hone improvisational, ensemble and listening skills in this fast-paced collaboration

Four members of The Big Shake-Up (formerly Bad Ass Brass) put wind and brass players through their paces in a workshop rehearsal which gets them improvising in 10 minutes, and gives players from different bands a fun opportunity to make music together, whilst honing their ensemble and listening skills.

Session 1: 10:30 - 12:00

Session 2: 14:45 - 16:15 FULL

Delivered in partnership with:
The Big Shake-Up

The Big Shake-Up takes its influences from the four corners of the globe resulting in a unique fusion of styles. Each member brings their own style to the band but with a collective focus on creating incredible original music performed to the highest standard. The band is comprised of some of the finest brass players and jazz musicians working in London today.

Be a Session Musician with the Royal Northern College of Music Session Orchestra

    • Saturday 8 July
    • Afternoon Session Only
    • Town Hall
    • Led by: Andy Stott
    • Suitable for vocalists and instrumentalists aged 11 and above of any ability
    • Duration: 1.5 hours
Book Now

Collaborative and high energy, this workshop improves performance skills using current chart hits.


In this lively, open workshiop rehearsal focussed on improving performance skills, you can expect to play and/or sing well-known pop repertoire inspired by music and musicians from all backgrounds in amongst the fantastic, sector-leading Royal Northern College of Music Session Orchestra.

Session time: 13:00 - 14:30

Delivered in partnership with:
Royal Northern College of Music

The Royal Northern College of Music Session Orchestra is the first ensemble of its kind in a major UK conservatoire. The 40-piece orchestra (rhythm section, strings, brass, percussion and vocalists) performs popular music repertoire conceived for the larger symphonic palette. It brings together musicians from both the classical and popular degree programmes, providing them with industry standard training and professional performance opportunities.

Make an Impression: Audition Advice with Andy Stott & Students from the Royal Northern College of Music

    • Saturday 8 July
    • Afternoon Session Only
    • Town Hall
    • Led by: Andy Stott
    • Suitable for students who are interested in applying for music college, aged 16+ of Grade 5 standard or equivalent
    • Duration: 2 hours
Book Now

Considering music college? This workshop will help you stand out from the crowd.

If you’re considering applying to music college then come along to this valuable session to gain audition advice from the Head of Popular Music at the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM), Andy Stott, who will be working alongside current RNCM students.

Each participant will need to prepare a short piece to perform to the group and then constructive feedback will be provided to help you gain more confidence in this pressured environment. There is extremely limited availability for this session in order to ensure that each participant receives one to one tuition. Booking early is advisable.

Session time: 15:30 - 17:30

Delivered in partnership with:
Royal Northern College of Music

Recreating a classic with Rachel Leach

    • Saturday 8 July
    • Morning & Afternoon Sessions
    • Festival Tent
      City Centre Gardens
    • Led by: Rachel Leach
    • Suitable for mixed instrumental musicians of any age or ability
    • Duration: 1.5 hours
Book Now

Collaboration and improvisation inspired by Stravinsky's classic The Rite of Spring



Session 1: 10:30 - 12:00

Session 2: 14:45 - 16:00

Join one of the UK’s leading composers and animateurs, Rachel Leach for a jam packed, interactive workshop based around Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring.

This creative workshop will have participants on their feet creating new music based on the main themes and structure of the Rite of Spring which will be brought together at the end of the session for its very own world premiere!

Performance Stages

Catch a Fringe Stage Performance!

Scheduled for lunchtimes and early evenings throughout the Festival week, Festival Fringe stages are programmed to ensure you can catch a whole range of different groups in free, open access performances at various locations with your lunch, or a refreshing evening drink!

Festival Fringe Stage times


  Supported by:
  Birmingham City Council