Each day is divided into three chamber music sessions, two in the morning and one in the afternoon. Playing is almost always one to a part. The first half of the afternoon is free, although many people choose to play, and in the evening most of the participants come together to prepare a larger work for choir and orchestras. In the mornings, between breakfast and the first session, there are talks on topics of interest to everyone in recent years these have included music at the London pleasure gardens, figured bass, French ornamentation, ways of approaching a piece for the first time and the passions in music. At other times there are talks for players of particular instruments or families of instruments.
On the first day the chamber music sessions are pre-arranged, but for the remainder of the week they are organized by participants, allowing everyone the opportunity to play music which particularly interests them, and to be introduced to new repertoire. Care is taken to ensure that all members of the course are included in these sessions. The personal objectives section on the application form gives applicants a chance to identify points they would like to address during the week. These may include technical points, particular styles or repertoire, and will give the tutors a chance to make suggestions and to bring together people who wish to explore complementary issues. Tutors provide tuition during the chamber music sessions, helping individuals and groups with matters of style, technique and ensemble.
The Baroque Week offers participants the chance to experience the riches of the world of baroque music. Many people use baroque instruments, and there will be some opportunities for these and for baroque bows to be borrowed players bringing modern stringed instruments are encouraged to experiment with gut strings. There is playing both at A=415 and A=440. A major work for choir and orchestra is prepared during the evenings of the week: works rehearsed in recent years include Pergolesis Magnificat, J. S. Bachs cantatas Actus Tragicus and Aus der Tiefe, and cantatas by Buxtehude and Tünder. On the penultimate night there is a concert, where chamber music is performed by the tutors, along with this large scale work. On the final night there is a concert given by the participants, followed by the end-of-week party.
As the tercentenary of Arcangelo Corelli falls in 2013, there will be opportunities in the week for playing some of his concerti grossi. In the course library there are 24 trio sonatas by Corelli and many eighteenth-century arrangements for wind instruments of his trios and concerti.
On the opening night you can choose to join in a massed band to perform one of the orchestral Florilegium Suites by the German composer Georg Muffat or if you wish you can split up into smaller groups of trios or quartets etc..