Songs of Separation Residential – Take Part!
By far the most special bit of Songs of Separation was the residential we held on the Isle of Eigg, in June 2015. In just 6 days, the team rehearsed and recorded the album, making films along the way. You can watch the video of the process below.
This was where the ‘magic’ happened! In this rural setting, where musicians were ‘separated’ from the pressures of every-day life, the we shared music, stories, wisdom and expertise. Great friendships were made, along with great music.
We’re wondering whether there is a call for more experiences of this nature? Would you like to take part in your own version of this amazing creative experience?
SoS Retreats for Professional Musicians:
We are exploring the idea of bringing more professional women musicians together, particularly in the genres of traditional music (although not exclusively). The idea is that it provides a break for musicians and, as well as making great music together, would focus on health and wellbeing, using holistic approaches, good food and energy work, and engaging in wider discussion about ‘what it is to be a working musician’, and how we navigate the challenges.
What the original Songs of Separation team found is that this gives rise to huge learning for everyone – about the industry, about promotion and networking, about the context and the drivers of our music making. There were so many positive spin-offs from just being together and sharing a creative experience!
The weekend / week would include sessions (free style music making), some structured and filmed sessions, along with non-musical activities which leave people feeling recharged and joyful. We’d hope to pick another beautiful location, a bit like the Isle of Eigg, but perhaps a bit more accessible!
We would not be looking to make a formal ‘album’, but instead focus on films of the group music making, with some live recorded sound. It may be that future album-making opportunities come out of this, but for the moment, we want to focus on creating a supportive community of musicians, and an experience that leaves people inspired!
At the moment, we’re in the very early planning stages. We’d like to hear from you about ‘how you’d want the experience to be’. Please complete the short survey, to let us know what you think!
SoS Retreats for People Who Play for Fun:
We are keen to explore whether non-professional musicians would also like to experience something along the lines of the Songs of Separation residential break?
We’ve enjoyed hugely rewarding relationships with our audiences, many of whom make music themselves, and we wondered if there is interest amongst our wider ‘Songs of Separation’ community, in coming together to share some musical magic!
Focusing on music making together, but with some other things thrown in (things which focus on health, wellbeing, creativity, self-care and such), the aim is to create a magical experience in a rural setting, giving people the opportunity to take leaps forward in their music making, but also to meet fascinating people, and have an unforgettable experience in a relaxed environment.
In line with the themes of Songs of Separation, which include ‘sharing the skills we have’, we’d be sharing songs, teaching each other tunes, pitching in during sessions… but there’d be another element about co-designing the residential: if there were other activities you wanted to see happen, or to lead, then we would talk about that, and people could bring their own skills to share. These might be other creative activities, or activities in nature, things relating to health and wellbeing… it would be up to the people attending how these additional activities ‘shape up’.
There is also the potential for ‘taught’ sessions, where a tutor comes in to work with a group on a specific song or arrangement. Material from the Songs of Separation album may feature, if people wanted it, too! We’d hope that some of the original SoS team would join us (tour diaries permitting),as tutors. This would be a more expensive option, because of the tutoring fees, but we’re keen to explore whether there is interest in this, amongst the wider ‘Songs of Separation’ community.
We’re in the early planning stages of this, so we’re keen to hear about what you think. Please complete the short survey here, to share your views with us!
We hope to meet you, at some point in the future, in a musical setting!