The orchestra is made up of mandolins, mandolas and guitars, along with their friendly owners who come with a variety of backgrounds and musical histories. Our playing strength varies as people come and go, but is in the region of fifteen to twenty instruments.
Most of the pieces we play are scored in five parts – Mandolins 1, 2 and occasionally 3, Mandola, and Guitar. Sometimes there is also a Bass part (when we are lucky enough to have a player!). Because of this arrangement the orchestra is able to accommodate players with very different musical backgrounds and levels of experience, from young students who are hoping to make a career in music, to adults who have made space in their busy lives to nurture their musical interest and capabilities, and even to a few stragglers who only started their musical journeys post-retirement.
There are no auditions and the only requirements for joining the orchestra are:
- Enthusiasm for your instrument and interest in playing with others
- A degree of competency in common key signatures C, D, G, A and an understanding of straightforward time signatures.
- Ability to read music and practice on your own; tabbed versions can be made available for guitarists
- Able to attend weekly rehearsals
In return, the orchestra provides:
- Music (scores and sound files)
- A stimulating repertoire
- Opportunity for performance
- Friendly support, advice and encouragement, and additional help with music if required.
The subscription rate is currently £75 per term.
To find out more get in touch via the form below or see our Listen and Events pages.