further information on a course for choral singers led by Patrick Craig
8 to 13 September 2019

The Moorish town of Xemina had its heyday in the 15th century, when it was a vital link in the frontier between the Moors and the Kingdom of Castile. Today Jimena de la Frontera is a typical pueblo blanco of whitewashed houses and steep streets, dominated by the ruins of its castle and fortress. We will rehearse in the church of San Francisco, in the centre of the town. The town has several restaurants and a range of accommodation to suit all pockets. It borders the Alcornocales natural park, an area of primæval mediterranean landscape, described by David Bellamy as one of Europe’s ten natural wonders. This vast expanse of predominantly cork oak forest is the haunt of many rare birds including Imperial and Royal eagles and vultures, also wild boar, deer, badgers, mongooses and otters.

Our plan will be to meet in time for supper on Sunday 8 September 2019. Then on the following five days to do a full morning’s work (say from 9.30am to 1.00pm, with a break), then take an indulgent four-hour lunch break – to rest the voice as much as anything else – and then put in another couple of hours of singing before supper. Throughout the week we’ll all eat together at different restaurants in the evening. We will give a public performance in the evening of Friday 13 September. The course will end after supper on that day.

Gibraltar is the most convenient airport; Málaga and Jerez are also possiblilities. Jimena de la Frontera has a railway station on the Madrid to Algeciras line, and a spectacular approach through the mountains of Andalusia, though the timings of connexions do not make it easy for the traveller. Find information at the website
www.renfe.es. There is a wide range of places to stay – hotels, hostals, posadas, casas rurales and a campsite with permanent wooden cabañas – each offering different degrees of luxury and all reasonably priced. We will send you the details when you register.

Singers of student age – which we will not define too closely – are invited to apply for up to six full scholarships to the Jimena de le Frontera Music Week. These places are intended for current, recent or prospective university choral scholars, music students or other singers seriously interested in developing their vocal skills and ensemble musicianship. There will be opportunities to form smaller-scale groups outside the times of the choral sessions. The scholars are exempt from the course fee but pay for their own travel and accommodation costs. We can help in finding inexpensive lodgings. To apply, just email us giving brief details of your singing experience.

The fee for the course is paid in two parts: a deposit of £315 or the equivalent in euros on registration and €200 on or before arrival in Jimena. The deposit may be credited to another course if you have to withdraw and we are able to allocate your place to another singer. The fee includes payment for the music booklet, which will be sent to you in advance, but not meals, travel or accommodation. To enrol, just email us and include the information listed below, or if we already know it just let us know that you would like to come. We will then send you details of how you may pay the deposit.

      o your name
      o address (to send you the music booklet)
      o telephone number(s)
      o preferred email address
      o voice (soprano – mean/mezzo – alto – tenor – baritone – bass)

      Email us for further enquiries about the Jimena de la Frontera Music Week.