As part of the ongoing celebration of The Full English launch (read our live review here) the English Folk Dance and Song Society, in partnership with the British Library and Camden Music Service, is organising The Full English Discovery Day a free family day of folk music, arts and dancing that will be held at the British Library next month on July 13 from 11am to 4.30pm.
The day will include the chance to try music, dancing and arts workshops and take part in a massed performance in the outdoor piazza. It is being held as part of The Full English, a nationwide learning programme to introduce a new audience to traditional English folk arts and music.
During the day families can explore the British Library and discover folk arts and dance and music around the building and the outdoor piazza. They will also be able to find the giant Jack in the Green and join in with a variety of family arts activities that are linked with his folklore and legend.
There will also be morris and maypole dancing workshops, traditional folk dance displays from Thrales Rapper, Camden Clog and the celebrated Hammersmith Morris Men and live performances from the Cecil Sharp House Choir, the London Fiddle School and the Royal College of Music Junior Department Chamber Choir.
In the afternoon, there is a unique opportunity for budding musicians and singers to take part in a massed family folk band and choir. There will be a tune workshop for children and parents to bring their instruments to, and a family singing workshop. A folk tune (Buttered Peas) and song (Acre of Land) from The Full English archives will be taught for the massed performance.
Primary schools in Camden have already been sent the song and tune by Camden Music Service so children can practice in advance. Anyone can download the notation and lyrics at www.efdss.org/thefullenglish and clicking on ‘Family Events’.
The day will culminate with The Full English Procession at 4pm, with a massed performance of the song and tune, and then a chance to join in with some traditional English dances.
Frances Watt, The Full English Learning Manager, said:
“This is an opportunity for families to learn about folk music, song, dance and customs together. Activities are going on all day and you can drop in and out.
“We hope as many children as possible will learn the words and music and join in the massed performance. As well as being a chance for parents and children to learn and perform together, it is helping to keep traditional music and song alive through the next generation.”
Alice Mayers, Learning Projects Manager at the British Library, said:
“We’re very excited to be throwing open our doors for another fun-filled discovery day. Families can drop in anytime or stay for the whole day. There will be heaps to do inside and out, our galleries will be open, and it’s all free.”
All events are free but some will be ticketed because of number restrictions. See here for full details.