Squeezer Workshops

John Kirkpatrick leads a series of one-day workshops based in Bishop's Castle, Shropshire.

Playing for Morris Dancing

Sunday 25th February 2024

Come and learn from somebody who has been Morris Dancing, playing for it, and thinking about it since he was twelve years old. After over 60 years, he must know something! This will mainly be useful for people who already play for this kind of dancing, but anybody who enjoys bashing out a tune will be most welcome. We aim to cover all styles of Morris Dancing. Acoustic instruments only, please - no electronics or percussion. Tuition will be both by ear and from printed music, which will be available in advance.

9.30Sign in
10.00 - 1.00First session
1.00 - 2.00Lunch provided
2.00 - 5.00Second session and recap

Tuition costs £40.00, which includes drinks, nibbles, and lunch. Please advise of any dietary requirements.


British Button Box Workshop

Friday 5th to Sunday 7th April 2024

John Kirkpatrick leads a series of workshops for players of the three-row button accordion - the quirky instrument that was taken round the world in the first class hands of Jimmy Shand. The right hand gives you three melodeon (push-pull) rows in B, C, and C#, and the left hand side gives you full accordion basses in the conventional "Stradella" layout, with bass notes and chords that are the same in either direction.

John will be starting out from his very firm base in Traditional English Folk Music, so the repertoire will be quite different from the Scottish Country Dance Style made famous by Jimmy Shand and his many followers. This weekend is also very instrument specific, and will not be suitable for players of the two-row Irish style of accordion, nor the G/D melodeon, nor the piano accordion.

As well as covering the expected fields of Morris Tunes, Country Dance Tunes, and Folk Songs, John will also be looking at the complexities of playing in all the keys available on this gloriously compact instrument, and exploring swathes of repertoire that may not be immediately associated with the poor old push-pull squeeze-box! Whether you've been playing five minutes or fifty years, this is a great opportunity to come and learn at the feet of one of England's most dedicated and respected musicians.

Cost of Tuition - £200

The fee includes lunches and tea/coffee/cakes throughout the day. You will need to arrange and pay for your own bed, breakfast, and evening meals.

or to find out more, or reserve a place, contact John.

The venue

The Church Barn, Church Lane, Bishop’s Castle, Shropshire, SY9 5AF

The Church Barn is a beautifully restored listed building with all modern facilities, including wheelchair access. It’s at the bottom of the town. Stand in the lych gate of the church, facing up the hill with the church behind you, turn left, take the first turning on the left, opposite The Six Bells Inn, and it’s the first building on the left. The car park is just beyond, also on the left.

For accommodation in Bishop’s Castle – hotels, B&B, self-catering, glamping or camping – look at ”Where To Stay” at bishopscastleandbeyond.co.uk.