Birmingham UK Harmonica Festival 2020

October 9th - 11th, 2020 at Hillscourt, Rednal, Birmingham, B45 8RS, UK.

Some photos from previous festivals can be seen, right.

We have left the details of the previous 2019 festival below to give an idea of what to expect. It will be updated as details of the 2020 event emerge.

           

Following, once again, the huge success of last year's festival, we have organised another event packed weekend for every type and style of harmonica player. Whether you are a beginner or an expert, H2020 will see another exciting change of venue. We will be moving to Hillscourt, in Rednal near Birmingham, which is mostly residentual but as rooms are plentiful but ultimately limited, late bookers will be able to stay in nearby hotels. More to follow ... But, as with the last festival the atmosphere will again be more relaxed and hands-on. The artists so far signed up are Adam Glasser, the Murphy Brothers and Giles Robson. More to follow.

This will be an exciting weekend with the usual workshops, contests, shops and International Gala Concert but in a new and different setting at the venue where we hold the Chromatic Weekend. And it is disability friendly.

In addition to the artists headlining the concert there will be other well-known artists taking part in activities around the festival. Some of the artists who have have been recently are Brendan Power, Gerry Ezard, Ben Hewlett, Lee Sankey, Bertram Becher, Ed Hopwood, Keith Parker and others ...

This page shows the overall organisation of the festival with details of programme, artists, shops, location, accommodation and transport. Just click the tab above to go to the desired area of the page.

It will soon be time to book up your tickets and accommodation as our allocation of rooms will go on sale to the public in March.

Introductory Video

... to the H2018 Festival Concert!

Artists

Move cursor over image for details.

Murphy Brothers Murphy Brothers



Pricing and Payment

How to Pay

Payment by PayPal

Just click the appropriate PayPal button for each item, this will open a 'Your Shopping Cart' page. You can adjust the quantity there if you want to, for example, if you want 2 Saturday Evening Concert tickets, change the 'Quantity' and click 'Adjust'. After you have made your final selection, click 'Checkout' or if preferred, 'Checkout with PayPal'. If you have left the 'Your Shopping Cart' page, click 'View Cart' to return to it.

Please note, we anticipate that most people will be staying at Hillscourt so will need to click the PayPal buttons for the Weekend and Saturday Night Concert, and for the desired accommodation, ie, the required buttons for Friday night, Saturday night or Sunday Night accommodation.

Please also note, Hillscourt only has single rooms with en suite shower and toilet facilites, however, for couples attending we will be able to allocate adjacent or very close together rooms for them.

Payment by Cheque

You can pay by cheque by completing the application form and sending it with your cheque in £s, payable to the NHL, to David Hambley, 7 Ingleborough Way, Leyland, PR25 4ZS. Prices are as below in the PayPal table.

Ticket Reservation

you can reserve your tickets by contacting David Hambley so you can pay for them when you get to Hillscourt.

Notes

  • The Weekend Day ticket gives entry to Hillscourt for all the daytime activities/workshops/shops/videos etc., including watching the contest which takes place on Saturday, but not the Saturday evening concert
  • Concessions - NHL Members are entitled to pay for one additional family member/partner at the NHL Member rate.
  • Non-members please provide contact details (email adress, mobile number) so that you can be contacted to confirm receipt of your payment and told of arrangements for ticket (wristband) collection.
  • There is NO Contest entry fee this year to encourage entries of both NHL members and non-members. Contestants must also purchase a Weekend Day ticket.
  • Contestants - please visit Online Contest Form to let me know the details of the music you intend to play, or alternatively, please email David Hambley details of each contest class entered, Name of Piece; Composer; Arranger; and Accompaniment wanted - the Online Contest Form is easier. Contest rules and information are on the contest webpage

Important Note for Children (aged 17 and under) attending

Children need to be accompanied at all times by their responsible adult so must probably take accomodation off site as Hillscourt only has limited double and family rooms.

Payment by Cheque

Payment can also be made by posting a cheque for the appropriate amount to David Hambley made out to the “National Harmonica League” or “NHL”, to the amount from the payment table below, in GBP.

Educational Bursary

A part or full training bursary may be available to eligible applicants who can demonstrate that they meet specific criteria. Further details can be found by clicking here for a pdf version or here for an editable MS Word version.

Item Cost PayPal
Weekend and Concert - Please Note, if, as is likely, you plan to stay at Hillscourt you need to purchase your accommodation, below! Please select option for Member, Non-Member or Child. Member, £110, Non-Member £115, Child £90
Combined Weekend/Concert
Friday night hot buffet meal £18
Saturday night hot buffet meal £18
Saturday day player only - excluding the concert, book separately. Please select option for Member, Non-Member or Child. Member, £60, Non-Member £62, Child £47
Saturday Day Player
Saturday evening concert only. Please select option for Member, Non-Member or Child. Member, £20, Non-Member £22, Child £10
Saturday Evening Concert only.
Sunday day player - meals may be purchased at the Graze Restaurant. Please select option for Member, Non-Member or Child. Member, £50, Non-Member £52, Child £42
Sunday Day Player
Single Room, includes bed and breakfast - Friday night £58.00
Double Room, includes bed and breakfast for both - Friday night (limited availability) £80.50
Single Room, includes bed and Breakfast - Saturday night £58.00
Double Room, includes bed and breakfast for both - Saturday night (limited availability) £80.50
Single Room, includes bed and breakfast - Sunday night £58.00
Double Room, includes bed and breakfast for both - Sunday night (limited availability) £58.00
Competition Entry - please note, there is no fee for entry to the contest to encourage entries None

Programme

Friday 9th October

Saturday 10th October

Sunday 11th October

Note:

The views of Workshop Leaders are their own and not the responsibility of the NHL.


Contest

The NHL Player of the year contest in 4 solo classes (Chromatic, Jazz, Diatonic Melodic and Diatonic Blues & Rock) plus duo, trio, etc., classes takes place in the concert hall on the Saturday of the festival. Contestants - please visit Online Contest Form to let me know the details of the music you intend to play, or alternatively, please email David Hambley details of each contest class entered, Name of Piece; Composer; Arranger; and Accompaniment wanted - the Online Contest Form is easier.

Another alternative is to download a hard copy form. Click Festival Application form, for this including contest details, and Festival Information leaflet, with more details of the contest classes, can be downloaded by clicking these links.

The contest page gives more details, including rules and names of previous winners.

Adjudicator - we are fortunate to have an experienced adjudicator - David Beer - from the Federation of Festivals to officiate at the contest. He has a lot of experience of youth music and has been involved in a wide range of music styles, West End Theatre and touring productions. David has produced a 'Tips' sheet to give guidance in what is expected of contestants in the various classes. This can be downloaded from here. More details can be obtained from David Hambley.


Shops

Retailers

This festival we have John Cook - repairs, mods, advice, jokes, and customisation tools; Sutherland Trading Co Ltd - representing the full range of Hohner Harmonicas; Silverfish Harmonica Microphones; and Sonnyboys Music Store - here you can try samples of all the new Chinese Harmonicas from Kongsheng and Easttop (for the sake of transparency Ben Hewlett has requested that we inform you he is one of the partners at Sonnyboys).

Auction

Our Auctioneer will lead the very successful lunchtime auction on Saturday, so bring your cash or cheque books and pick up a bargain.

If you have any CDs, music or equipment etc. which you would like to donate for the auction, you can always email Bren Hewlett in advance to let him know. We need your money to run events like this, so dig deep.


Venue

Hillscourt

Hillscourt, B45 8RS is a delightful venue located in leafy South Birmingham, near to Bromsgrove, Worcestershire. It not only offers conference facilities but also has 55 en-suite bedrooms. It is situated within 25 acres of pretty gardens and is directly next door to the Lickey Hills from which there are breathtaking panoramic views of the surrounding countryside.

Travel Details

Hillscourt is just 5 minutes drive from the M42 Junction 1 or the M5 Junction 4, and 30 minutes from Birmingham City Centre. There is ample free parking. If you prefer to travel by train then take the cross city line from Birmingham New Street to Longbridge Train Station and then it is a 5 minute drive to Hillscourt. The local taxi firm is Roundabout Cars contactable on 0800 7835789 or 01245 4531234.