Putting Folk Camps firmly on the folk festival map, the Folk Camps Party Band is an exciting multi-ability multi-age ceilidh band drawn from all parts of the Folk Camps spectrum that attends several festivals a year to show off the essence of Folk Camps.
The first festival performance was at Chippenham May 2018 and they went down a storm! people danced, listened happily, and talked to us about Folk Camps, as you can see from the video above.
The festival public experience first-hand the fun that can be shared across generations and abilities in making distinctive music together that is both musically satisfying and good to dance to.
The band participants, as well as having fun, have a first rate educational experience which helps to develop the skills needed to make great potential folk camp musicians for the future.
The specially arranged repertoire is drawn from the English folk tradition as well as other traditions which have been absorbed into the English standard repertoire.
The band is the brainchild of Jenny Newman who also leads the project.
The band concept, particularly its multi-generational character, has received an overwelmingly positive response from festival organisers leading to bookings from major folk festivals from May 2018 until well into 2021 with more in the pipeline.
Upcoming Festival Bookings
There are 5 confirmed bookings for the 2019 season.
Chippenham Folk Festival 2019
A repeat of last year’s incredible debut! The band will be performing at the Lunchtime Ceilidh in the Market Square on Saturday 25th May. More details of the festival here.
Gate to Southwell Festival 2019
An innovative roots and acoustic music event in the charming market town of Southwell in Nottinghamshire between 6th and 9th June. The Band will be performing late afternoon or early evening on Saturday 8th as well as running children’s workshops. More details of the festival here.
Knees Up Cecil Sharp Ceilidh
This prestigious circuit ceilidh is a new departure for the Party Band. It has been booked for the the 21st June celidh. Details here.
Towersey Festival 2019
The Party Band has been booked for the Opening Ceilidh on Friday 23rd August at this renowned festival. The Band will also be running Folk Camps style workshops on three mornings during the festival. See our billing on the festival website.
Bromyard Folk Festival 2019
The Party Band will be performing for the Opening Ceilidh on Thursday 5th September. Bromyard started in 1968 and is now a major event in the shadow of the Malvern Hills in Worcestershire. See our billing on the festival website.
The band includes a wide range of young (and not so young) Folk Campers producing a balanced band of around seventeen players (up to five of which will be professional musicians). From time to time, as places become available, the opportunity to join the band will be advertised to all Folk Campers. Despite the considerable commitment required from participants there was no shortage of good candidates in response to the most recent appeal for young recruits.
What’s happening now?
With a year under their belts the band is looking forward to an even more exciting season with a lot of new arrangements to learn. Rehearsals started on 6th April in preparation for five major gigs in 2019 beginning with a return to Chippenham Folk Festival in May to hopefully repeat the phenomenal success of last year.
Gigs of 2018
Chippenham Folk Festival 2018
The Party Band performed for the first time at the Lunchtime Ceilidh on Sunday 27th May. The ceilidh was open to the public so this was a marvellous opportunity to show off what Folk Camps is about to a wide audience.
Towcester Midsummer Music 2018
The Party Band performed for the Friday Night Ceilidh in Towcester Town Hall as part of the Midsummer Music festival. They were invited to return in 2019.
Folk Camps 50th Birthday Celebration 2018
The Party Band played at the Folk Camps August bank holiday camp at Fowlmere where we celebrated 50 years of Folk Camps.