A vocal improvisation immersion.
July 8-13 2018 | @ The Beautiful Penpont, Brecon, on the edge of the Beacons.
Here is a video about this work:
This week is for singers who know they have a bigger song to sing, a stirring in the voice that knows there’s a bigger landscape somewhere to be initiated into.
And, for the UK’s vocal improv enthusiasts who want to learn methods from other countries and teachers and up their skills in leading others.
The week is designed to help you:
Open the full resonance of your body and come more vibrantly into your true voice.
Come into the wild voice in its power, delicacy and truth, and its ecological (relational) genius.
Connect our music making with the land and river. To sing from and to the environment and feel what happens to our music when it is produced in collaboration with Nature.
Build our capacities with rhythmic and harmonic improv, soloing and improvising with lyrics (you totally can :). To gain tools to lead others in strengthening these.
Share the practice and nurturing gifts of sound healing.
Shed the city and go a little feral, (albeit in a 350 year old country home… run organically on wood-chips by former tree-surgeons…)
Hold council to support each singers’ journey.
Make beautiful music together, and to sing wonderful songs together. To let ourselves be seen and heard by one another, in full true voice.
Relax and have a really good time.
Sliding scale: £650 – £450 for five days’ tuition, 5 nights full board sleeping 2-3 to a (exceedingly comfortable) room.
2 discounted assistant positions are available: to apply email firstname.lastname@example.org
There is a modest Bursary Fund that can provide assistance to up to three participants. Recipients tend to be professional musicians / music graduates, or low income, from disadvantaged backgrounds, young, or single parents.
Penpont is a beautiful, 350 year old home with extensive grounds on about 2,000 acres of land, including a 2000 year old yew tree; on the banks of a beautiful river with swimming holes right by the bridge.
Vocal Improvisation is a wilderness art form; sourced in connection, listening, and allowing the natural flow of aliveness to sing through our bodies in a skilled way. As such it is a deeply beautiful, challenging and life-restoring practice.
Mornings will be “work” times when we’ll concentrate and learn chops. Afternoons will be “play” times when we’ll sing the land, do sound healing, and sing more freely together.
To be honest, this work does seem to release trauma and on previous retreats, a fair bit has come up for people. The modality seems to access and release deeply held feelings, and the container appears to be safe for people to do this. I am working to build my trauma literacy and like to invite trauma specialists to assist retreats. My teaching is primarily musical / vocal / expressive; but the reality is that nature, space, and embodiment / expression practices bring the heart up from under the concrete that modern urban life buries it under, and there is a lot in there to move. The outcome seems to be, a lot of love, a close, warm group, and shining open faces. And, beautiful singing!! Please do be aware however that I am not a trained therapist, and I place my deep trust in vocal improvisation and nature to hold the heart’s process.
If you have questions, please email Dee@brionygreenhill.com
People have said:
“It was epic – and that’s an understatement.”
“It was deeper than an ayahuasca ceremony; I grew more than in workshops with leading psychologists, and it’s the safest I’ve ever felt in a group.”
“You are a master.”
“One of the most powerful experiences of my life! I feel changed on a cellular level!”
“Being bathed in beauty. Being held in love. Being winkled out of a shell. Being birthed into a new world.”
“You made it feel like a womb. Protected, loved, nourished, warm and holding.”
About other workshops, and private lessons:
“Most unqualified joy of the entire week.”
“Some singing teachers teach you sing with your voice. Briony teaches you to sing with your heart and sing from your soul.”
“What a joy! Such delicious healing offered in the sound therapy in small groups. I intend to emulate her in my own workshops and include several of the exercises she offered.”
“At the end it was like “Wow! did that happen?”
“Everyone I send to you comes to me afterwards and says, “she is f*****g rocking my s**t!””
“Watching you facilitate was a demonstration of a kind of mastery (or should that be mistressy!) of the energy flows around groups, singing and Improvisation.”
“You take people through the window of music into the Cathedral of consciousness. The spiritual energy is grounding, uplifting, beautiful.”
“It was seriously fun, crazy, inspiring, opening and meditative, all at the same time.”
“Classically experiential. Heartfully and skillfully and humbly led and deeply moving for those in my little group.”
“Briony really made us all feel at home – starting off with exercises that didn’t force me outside of my comfort zone, and a no judgement pact, really allowed me to feel comfortable with the group, which then gave me the confidence to try out some solos.”
“I work with Briony because she teaches me how to use my voice to get to know myself, express myself, and expand myself.”
“it gave me confidence to be more playful and enjoy my voice which I’m often nervous about in non-classical settings.”
“I am so glad that I did it – what an exhilarating experience!”