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The two groups will generally work separately on specific strumming or picking skills but at least one session per day will involve the groups working together on arrangements that have both strumming and picking elements for all skill levels. All sessions will be flexible to cater for every participant’s differing skill level, so folks can move between the groups for specific pieces. This year the course will be located in the centre of town, so opportunities for flash mob performances will be high on the agenda!
You will also learn some tricks of the trade, including how to:
• transpose a song’s key to suit your voice
• use cheat chords to progress to increasingly complex songs
• make your ukulele ring with a sweet, confident tone
• play the twelve bar walkin’ blues
• try some improvisation during instrumental breaks
Example repertoire: The repertoire will be supplied in comprehensive course booklets that include a range of genres such as retro folk classics, Celtic favourites, cool jazz, hot Latin, upbeat swing, golden oldies, rock rhythm and blues, foot-tappin’ country, romantic waltz, smooth soul, evocative blues, and melodious Hawaiian.
To enrol in this course it’s expected that you:
• will be able to play a few more chords than just C, F and G7
• have played ukulele for at least one year
• will be able to change between known chords fairly confidently
If you want to learn to play melodies and riffs you’ll need to be ready to:
• practise playing the C scale (When you enrol we will send it to you). Start now!
• pick and pluck the strings with your fingers and thumb
• read either tablature (Tab) or musical notation
What to bring: music stand, pencil and eraser, water bottle and a sense of humour.
Cathy Welsford has been teaching, playing and singing for as long as she can remember! She has directed adult and children’s choirs performing in major events and on overseas tours to Europe and Canada. Since turning her focus to the mighty uke, she has established Highly Strung Ukuleles in Armidale, teaching community groups and private students, and performing and presenting workshops at festivals. Cathy also teaches ukulele in schools and ukulele and drumming to seniors’ groups. Her relaxed teaching style is very inclusive, catering for the variety of skill levels within any group. Cathy currently performs in the radical, rebellious, revolutionary wild women from the lunatic fringe, The Wild Women of Armidale.
Angie Smith is a ukulele teacher, singer-songwriter and member of The Wild Women of Armidale who performs at festivals and community events. She has a PhD in Education, as well as over 30 years’ experience of teaching in universities and community arts programs. She co-directed The Armidale Women’s Comedy Festival for nine years and Uralla YouthFest for three years, promoting the careers of artists and festival workers, and now teaches regular ukulele classes to assist players develop both their playing and singing skills. She has published several books on health and comedy, and is currently compiling a song lyrics collection. Examples of her work can be viewed at https://www.facebook.com/thewildwomenofarmidale/?fref=ts.