For more than 30 years this course has been at the forefront of cello education. With students of all ages and standards welcomed, we create a friendly and uncompetitive environment, designed to help the individual with their specific needs. The bottom line is that each individual needs a technical foundation and playing system so they can express themselves through the wonderful gift of music that we share. Music and technique together.
The course meets for a week twice a year. You are in the best hands as the faculty is selected from the most gifted players and teachers across Europe. All of them are renown for their skill as teachers and their enjoyment in sharing their knowledge and experience . Whatever your goal, we provide the foundations to ensure healthy performance practice as well as facilitating outstanding short term progress.
An individual cello lesson every day either in private or in an open masterclass (participants chosen with care and willingness to take part).
Exceptional quality pianists, all solo players in their own right provide accompanying expertise, rehearsal opportunities and play in masterclasses.
Emphasis on healthy and safe performance practice is core to our approach assisted by Alexander Technique lessons.
We welcome adult and junior players - no minimum standard but about ABRSM Grade VIII is how we think you will benefit most.
If cello and the desire to play it is an important part of your life then this unique course with its personable, friendly atmosphere and wonderful setting has everything! In this uncompetitive environment where there are no agendas other than to help the course members play to the best of their ability and to go on stage ready to play
Work through and rapidly improve repertoire you are preparing for exams or performances
Performance platforms throughout the week and two student concerts at the end of the week
From senior professors insights into conservatoire life, applying for training and discussion about the profession
I had masterclasses with Adrian Brendel, Jonathan Aasgaard and Tim Lowe, as well as a lesson with Sue Lowe. Being able to play to a variety of world-class cellists all in the space of a week was an amazing experience, with each teacher providing their own unique insights into cello playing. Another huge benefit of the course was that many of the lessons were open, allowing me to listen to my peers and learn from their lessons too. In addition, there was a mid week platform and a concert at the end of the course, providing me with two performance opportunities. These were invaluable, especially after the pandemic has limited live concerts for the past year. The facilities at the school are excellent, from the impressive concert hall to the extensive sports centre, providing the perfect setting for an intensive week of cello.
The course is not only about the cello
Due to the atmosphere created there is a vivid social aspect too. At the end of, what are usually long and intense days, there is time to let your hair down and relax. There is often a group (including teachers) who visit the lovely local pub and for the younger members of the course supervised films and activities in the houses.
The final event of the week is always a student concert. Getting out there and playing is not only where most is learned but one of the main reasons for playing. With new friendships formed and the sounds of cello ringing in your ears, there is always a sadness when it's time to head back to real life, that is until next year!!
‘Teddies’ is near the centre of Oxford but is set in spacious surroundings; 100 acres of former open countryside. The school was substantially formed in the 1870s and flourished as an independent school for boys. It became fully co-educational in 1997. More recent developments include the North Wall Arts Centre, opened in 2007, which won several architectural awards including from the RIBA.
Due to numbers there are normally separate boys and girls houses with individual rooms where, within social time limits, you can practice your cello, rest, revise for upcoming academic exams and spend quiet time. There is access to the Internet through the school’s intranet. There are TV rooms, table tennis etc in the houses. We provide two house-parents to ensure the "juniors" are happy and feel included and get to bed in reasonable time!
The Ogston Music School
The Ogston Music School was opened in 2017. The state of art facility expands the musical repertoire of the school, with 20 new practice rooms, seven ensemble rooms, the Weston Recital Room, a rock room, the Fenton Recording Studio, and the Ferguson Sixth Form Music Library. The school also commissioned Nick Hardy (TSH Architects) to complete the school’s main quad which incorporated a new central hall, completed in 2020, with a capacity for 1,000 people.