Llandovery 2021

XXIV International Summer Music Course – Llandovery College Carmarthenshire (Wales) UK

Pre-course – 6th July 2021 – 10th July 2021 (arrival on 5th July)

Main course – 12th July 2021 – 25th July 2021 (arrival 11th July afternoon, departure 25th July morning)

A specialised, intensive Music Course for young musicians preparing exams, auditions and competitions with some of the worlds best teachers.

The Pre-Course
The number of places on offer for this pre-course is limited to 20 only while we have 100 places on the main course. In response to demands for a very intensive language course prior to joining our usual summer music and language course we are have been in a position, for the past 9 years to propose a one-week crash English or French Language Course strictly for students registering for our Musical Summer Course as well. The Pre-Course consists of:

  • 1, 2, 3 or 4 hours per day English, French, language tuition in small groups of 5/6  students or less + 1 hour Chamber Music + 1 hour Choir.
  • Full board and lodging in shared bedroom or small dormitories as for the main Summer Course.


  • 1, 2, 3 or 4 hours per day one to one language tuition + 1 hour Chamber Music
  • We are also able to offer one to one tuition in piano, violin, viola  although the teachers may not be the same as those available during our main course
  • Full board and lodging in shared bedroom or small dormitories as for the main Summer Course. A few single rooms

Choir, swimming, tennis and golf course at your disposal free of charge. Requests to register for this crash course must come by e-mail. Minimum musical level grade 7/8 in a least one instrument –the second one can be a lower grade. The choir is open for students and accompanying parents. Parents can also register for languages.

Main Course - Instrument Tuition
Instrumental tuition, Master classes, composition, conducting classes


The instrumental, voice conducting and composition tuition classes are conducted by fully qualified and experienced teachers and internationally known performers.

  • Music for keen amateurs: Participants are required to have a minimum of Level 6 or 7 in one instrument, the second or third instrument can be a lower grade
  • Music as an enhancement in the preparation of future professionals (Level 8)

We do prepare young instrumentalists for entrance audition for the Higher Musical Schools (Royal College of Music, Royal Academy, Guildhall, or Conservatoires Supérieurs de Musique etc…) Please note that for non-English speakers who wish to enter the Royal College of Music, Royal Academy or Guildhall, acquiring an acceptable level of spoken English is a must. We provide this sort of coaching during the course There will be a limit to the number of students an individual teacher can take, and if a student’s first choice of teacher is no longer available he or she will be assigned to another appropriate teacher.


Chamber music coaching with Jean-Luc Borsarello.

The Summer School offers an extensive chamber and wind chamber music program, which is organized by Jean-Luc Borsarello Varying ensembles (according to standard, instrument and preference) play together informally and formally Coaching is available to players of all levels in either pre-formed or informal groups. The availability of professional coaches and chamber music associates offers amateurs the opportunity to be coached and also to play with professionals in some sessions.

Orchestral workshop with William Godfree Also open to all who will satisfy the audition, rehearsing is from 7.45 pm up to 9.pm except on the first Saturday.

Master classes


Given by leading artists master classes are generally for the advanced student or professional musician wishing to undertake intensive study. Entry is limited and students are selected. The classes are open to observers registered in our course

Jazz workshop

The jazz workshop is open to all (classical students as well!)

Jazz Course – Coordinator Alex Forsyth The Jazz course aims to cater for jazz students of all levels, whether relative beginners or more experienced players who want to develop their improvisational skills in practical situations and in the company of like-minded students. The course will be structured to cover 2 weeks and will culminate in an end-of-course concert. All teaching will be workshop-based. *The students wishing to benefit from one to one tuition have to register as for the classical tuition and this entitles them to 10 one and half hour jazz session on top of their individual lessons

Depending on numbers, students will be taught as an ensemble or divided into smaller groups based on standard and experience

Tutors will lead groups with a wide variety of experience in jazz teaching. These will include Alex Forsyth (saxophone, flute and bass guitar), Tim Funnell (piano), Rosario Macaluso (trumpet), John Perry (drums), Robert Short (voice) and Steve Banks (electric guitar). For those who are relatively inexperienced, areas of study will include basic chord/scale relationships and their application to improvisation, basic harmony and fundamentally important genres of such as the blues, modal jazz and Afro-Brazilian/Afro-Cuban styles. More experienced students will cover more complex tunes and areas of harmony, such as altered and substituted chords and their related scales. In that formula individual tuition will not normally be offered (although additional individual lessons may be arranged by agreement with the course tutors).

Main Course - Vocal Tuition

Vocal Tuition

About Vocal Tuition

Studying classical singing in childhood and during puberty, before the final changes of the voice have taken place (which normally occurs between the ages of 13 and 15 for females and between 15 and 17 for males) is always considered extremely dangerous for the future health of the vocal organ. In fact the oldest and most prestigious of the Italian bel canto and music conservatoires were forbidden to enrol girls before they had reached the age of 16 and boys before they had reached the age of 18.

The experience of the great singing teachers of the golden era of Italian Opera between 1700 and 1900 revealed that the voices of children (even the most gifted and promising ones) go through a period of extreme delicacy during mutation into the adult voice.

The reason for this important observation was then researched carefully using twentieth century medical science (phoniatrics) to explain why the sensitive years of transformation of the muscles and cartilage of the larynx are particularly vulnerable to serious damage (sometimes irreparable) when subjected to unnatural effort.

The use of typical operatic singing techniques, in fact, enables the human voice to develop really extraordinary abilities. This can be compared with the use of sports training techniques which can lead to athletes breaking records.

However, just as in sports you can start to coach children and teenagers to develop into adult Olympic athletes, so it is with the education of young voices. BUT it can only be done by following a very precise and gradual process of transformation of the voice from that of a child to that of an adult WITHOUT any unnatural effort or forcing.

It should be made clear that a child of 9-12 singing an operatic aria and trying to imitate an adult’s voice is just like a child of the same age competing in a track, long jump or swimming event against adults, using rhythms and systems that do not fit in with the physical features of growth at that age. Even if a child or a young man in puberty can sing an operatic aria for a few minutes (for example O my dear Father, from Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi) and appear to make sounds like a professional soprano, the efforts resulting from the pressure which the abdominal muscles need to exert, the many breaths that are taken even in the middle of words, the irregular fluctuations of vibrato, etc, are all signs of vocal fatigue. This will result later in the loss of the agility of the voice that you need to develop the professional tools of an opera singer.

The exploits of some children on television talent-shows mislead parents into thinking that children with no musical or operatic skills do in fact possess them, because children sing on television with amplification through a microphone! In the theatre, real professionals do not use a microphone when they sing opera! And singing in opera does not mean just singing a famous aria but it means singing in a complex and often 3-4 hour long performance where there are duets, trios, recitatives, arias, declamation, choruses, etc.

So the singing teacher who imposes operatic techniques on a 9-12 year old child – and even on 13-15 year old teenagers who have not yet completed the changes to their voices, however gifted – is committing a serious error. At 20, the boy or the girl will have lost the naturalness and vocal agility that serve to build the true voice of a professional. It will be frustrating and painful to have to correct major flaws after initially believing a child to be a prodigy. In fact, in cases like these, boys frequently give up singing opera because they have lost their self-assurance and self-esteem.

My advice after over 20 years’ experience in the conservatoire in Italy is this: when a child shows a lot of musical and vocal talent, encourage the study of an instrument (ideally the piano which also develops the sense of harmony), have the student sing in choirs with treble voices up to the age of 12, and take singing lessons from a teacher who begins with easy and suitable repertoire, like old chamber music arias or folk songs. Between the ages of 12 and 15 go easy on the singing until the voice has mutated, and continue studying piano and music theory.

14-15 year-old girls and 16-17 year-old boys should begin to develop their operatic vocal technique slowly while monitoring how the “new” voice reacts to the stress of a more intense workout.

Any singing teacher who does not respect this approach is incompetent and dangerous, only interested in making easy money out of the hopes and illusions of children and their families who pursue brief and fleeting celebrity. The young artist will be psychologically damaged.

Leonardo De Lisi

—— oOo ——

Lyrical Opera

with Simonida Miletic, Kim Begley and Elizabeth Collier

Jazz Vocal Tuition

with Letizia Morelli

Pop, Folk & Jazz Vocal Tuition

with Robert Short

Summer School choir with William Godfree

lmfl choir

The Choir is one of the main features of the Summer School and that most people attending will want to take part. Most of our instrumental teachers rush in it   Membership is open to all without audition.

Vocal Workshop: Simonida Miletic  and Kim Begley

Vocal technique and interpretation of classical songs and operatic arias by the main Italian, English, French, German and Spanish composers from the early 17th century until the modern age.

Main Course - Conducting & Composition
Conducting: William Godfree

Conducting Class 4 places on each course Conducting courses of the LMFL summer academy consists of two classes:

Level 1: Beginners, without any experience in conducting. The course will give them the opportunity to learn the basic technique of conducting
Level 2 Programme: Advanced level Students with knowledge of conducting: They will have to study the 2014’s programme repertoire prior to coming to the course.

They will have opportunities to rehearse with the orchestra and some will be chosen to conduct the end of course ‘s concert.

There are feedback sessions after each orchestra workshop


Composition: Dr Paul Goodey or William Godfree

The composition classes are divided into two sections: an individual lesson of 1 hour every two days and a seminar in English every other day.

The content of the one-to-one lessons will vary according to the student’s level and will be aimed at creating a new composition during the course, to be performed at the final concert (performers and time permitting).

Diverse composition techniques will be studied according to the student’s aesthetic preferences from traditional tonal harmony to more elaborate musical expression. Students will learn about musical scripting software, particularly using Sibelius notation software.

The seminars will study in some detail the most significant influences on contemporary music including :


The development by 19th-century composers of a musical style that would express the characteristics of their own country. They did this by including tunes from their nation’s folk music, and taking scenes from their country’s history, legends, and folk tales, as a basis for their compositions. Nationalism was encouraged by governments in the early 20th century for propaganda purposes in times of war and political tension. Composers of nationalist music include Jean Sibelius, Edvard Grieg, Antonin Dvorak  Carl Nielsen, Zoltán Kodály, Aaron Copland, Edward Elgar, Dmitri Shostakovich, and Stephen Foster.


As its name implies, Neo-Classicism was a kind of “new classicism”. It combined musical elements from the Classical Period with the newer trends that were emerging early in the twentieth century. These classical elements included tonal centers, clarity of form, and melodic shape. To these (and many other) classical elements, neo-classicists added such modern flavourings such as quirky rhythms, spiky dissonances, and large amounts of chromatics. The neoclassical movement was fairly widespread, with many composers from all over Europe (and the U.S.) contributing to the sub-genre. Some of the more recognized neoclassical composers are Igor Stravinsky, Paul Hindemith, Dmitri Shostakovich, Sergei Prokofiev, and Aaron Copland, to name only a few. The motivation for the neoclassicism was simple: the heavy musical experimentation of the early part of the century left some composers wanting to “reconnect” with musical tradition. They did this, but at the same time held on to musical aspects that they had been developing during the Modern Period. The aim was not to revive old musical idioms but to simply acknowledge tradition. While neoclassicism was a reaction against the chaotic musical period from 1910 to 1920, so too was Arnold Schoenberg’s new twelve-tone method. Both tried to bring control over the previously wild music of the 20th century. The difference is that the twelve-tone method did this by creating an entirely new musical language, while neoclassicism did it by revisiting tried-and-true musical heritage.


A French movement in the late 19th and early 20th cent. It was begun by Debussy in reaction to the dramatic and dynamic emotionalism of romantic music, especially that of Wagner. Reflecting the impressionist schools of French painting and letters, Debussy developed a style in which atmosphere and mood take the place of strong emotion or of the story in program music. He used new chord combinations, whole-tone chords, chromatics, and exotic rhythms and scales. In place of the usual harmonic progression, he developed a style in which chords are valued for their individual sonorities rather than for their relations to one another, and dissonances are unprepared and unresolved. Although conceived in reaction to romanticism, musical impressionism seems today the culmination of romanticism. Its influence was widespread and is evident in the music of Ravel, Dukas, Respighi, Albéniz, de Falla, Delius, C. T. Griffes, and J. A. Carpenter.

Twelve-tone technique or dodecaphony

Twelve-tone technique is a system of musical composition devised by Arnold Schoenberg. Music using the technique is called twelve-tone music. Josef Matthias Hauer also developed a similar system using unordered hexachords, or tropes, at the exact same time and country but with no connection to Schoenberg. Schoenberg himself described the system as a “method of composing with 12 notes which are related only to one another”. Schoenberg invented the twelve-tone techniques, which is a method of composition based on a fixed order of the twelve chromatic tones (Benward, 303). It is a system in which the twelve pitch classes are placed in a specific order, forming a set that then become a compositional tool (Sadie, 286). It was developed around 1920 as a means of providing a coherent basis for complete chromatic music. The basic difficulty in composing in atonal idiom is intelligent control of melodic and harmonic forces. “There are ways of harnessing these forces by contrapuntal and harmonic means that are similar to those used in the early development of Western polyphony” (Marquis, 185). However, these ways are much more complex than the tradition Western polyphony. Therefore, Schoenberg invented the matrix system to help composing.

Jazz Minimalism

In music, the minimalist movement was, like minimal art, a reaction against a then-current form, with composers rejecting many of the dry intellectual complexities and the emotional sterility of serial music and other modern forms. Generally, minimalist compositions tend to emphasize simplicity in melodic line and harmonic progression, to stress repetition and rhythmic patterns, and to reduce historical or expressive reference. The use of electronic instruments is common in minimalist music, as are influences from Asia and Africa. Among prominent minimalist composers are Philip Glass, Steve Reich, Terry Riley, La Monte Young, and John Adams. Musical analysis and listening will also be an important aspect of the course, stimulating debates and encouraging students towards their own creativity.

Taking a music course and learning a foreign language, was often mutually exclusive. Not any more ! The courses bring together musicians of all nationalities. The diversity of languages heard every day, the exchanges that result from one’s work in music make language learning easier: sharing a common passion – music, making it together and talking about it together provides motivation. For English-speaking students we offer the opportunities to learn or improve and practice French (FFL), German (GFL), Italian (IFL) or Spanish (SFL) as Foreign Languages. Classes are also conducted by specialist teachers, all of whom are native speakers. We offer quality tuition in intensive English by specialist teachers of English as a Foreign Language (EFL) who are themselves native speakers. The language classes can be taken in small groups or one to one, according to the student’s precise needs. The group classes consist of 4 to 6 students. The basic course, consisting of one, two, three or five one hour sessions a day, aims to help develop competency in oral communication, to develop a more in-depth knowledge of grammar, and to enrich the student’s vocabulary by using appropriate teaching material suited to individual needs. No serious musician should have more than 2 or 3 hours language tuition per day, but when linguistic needs are great, we suggest coming to the pre-course, in Llandovery only Linguistic Director – Dr. Alan D. Moller lmfl langauge director dr mollerA British applied linguist specialized in language testing, Alan D Moller, Ph.D and Dip App Ling (Edinburgh), MA (Cantab), PGCE (London). Dr Alan Moller, a retired British Council Officer, has been Director of the English Language Services Department of the British Council incorporating, among other tasks, inspecting and advising language schools worldwide. He wrote many of the BC Tests for English as a Foreign Language (mini platform tests) still in use nowadays. He was actively involved with the introduction of the ELTS (now IELTS) in 1989. Alan was posted in Africa, Singapore, and Malaysia and was Cultural Attaché at the New Delhi British High Commission in charge of organising the Henry Moore Exhibition. After retiring from the British Council, Alan has been full time Chief Examiner for Trinity College London. Duties included academic responsibility for the Certificate in TESOL, for the Diploma in TESOL, and for the suite of Spoken English tests. On his departure from TCL in 1999, these responsibilities were assigned to three different professionals. In 2003, he was appointed Chair of Examiners for the London Tests of English by the main British Examinations Board, EDEXCEL (London). His Ph.D “A study in the validation of proficiency tests of English as a Foreign Language” (Edinburgh 1981). He Is Academic Director for IATQuO Its current activities are to validate the training of teachers of English as a Foreign Language in the various training centers for teachers in Europe and Asia
Both types of participant are assigned to one of 4 groups:

  • The adult over-18’s group,
  • The « junior » 13 to 17-year-old group, the junior groups are supervised and given active and positive support by trained staff.
  • The  Junior Group (20  accompanied children maximum)  5 to 11 year olds
  • We sometimes take unaccompanied children from 11 to 13 who are at an advanced level and who are known to us from attending a previous LMFL course, but never children who have not attended before.

The Junior Group members will have to conform to the basic rules and regulations of Llandovery College and LMFL. The Junior Group accompanied by a parent will be under the constant supervision of their parent(s) but still will have to follow the bed time hours for each age group. Junior students in possession of a written authorisation from their legal guardian/parents will be authorised to leave the school premises in the afternoon/evening without supervision – a copy must be sent by mail before the start of the course. We want to emphasize that we do not favour this kind of authorization. Nevertheless if the course directors feel that the junior student abuses that authorisation and puts himself (herself) at risk, the authorization will be cancelled.  This is not negotiable. Senior group participants are not affected by the above arrangement but, nevertheless, in cases of anti-social behaviour senior participants will be asked to leave the course and the premises without any refund possible. Any decision on a disciplinary issue is the sole responsibility of the Course Director.

General Information
We suggest that participants obtain a certificate of insurance against civil liability, theft, and physical injury and send a copy with the final payment.

We particularly draw your attention to the need to insure musical instruments as well (loss and theft).

Students normally resident outside the European Union should hold medical insurance.

Use of all sports equipment at the school is free.

The number of resident participants is limited by the number Llandovery College can accommodate.

Registration of non-resident participants may also be limited in order to ensure high standards of teaching and an enjoyable working atmosphere.

Applications will be treated on a first come first served basis.

You can only ensure your place by paying the full fees. We were filled up to maximum capacity in Summer 2012 and had to refuse 30 requests for registrations, so we recommend early registration -it will start in October.

For those coming from far away it is possible to rent double basses. Nevertheless, the Course Directors reserve the right to cancel the course if the number of applicants is deemed to be too low 3 months before the starting date of the course. In this instance, the total amount already paid will be refunded in full and no other type of compensation will be given.

If a participant decides to cancel before the 01/05, the registration fees (basic fees) shall not be refunded. If cancellation takes place after the 01/05, no refund of the minimum registration fees or total fees will be possible.

The balance of fees is due on or before 01/05 after which date any reserved accommodation not paid for in full will be re-let.

We strongly recommend that you take out insurance to cover cancellation costs.

The College has a very strict indoors non-smoking policy.  Anyone breaking this rule in their bedroom or in the common rooms will be asked to leave the course and there will be no refund of fees.

We have noticed a growing tendency of our students to taking too many options or classes and they usually end up the course totally exhausted and we would like very much to reverse this tendency In particular, if one of the choices is composition we recommend that the students do not take more than two other disciplines, but it is possible to have two different instruments tuition and voice for example. At the end of the course, students and teachers will give three public concerts. Participants are therefore requested to bring concert dress with them, white shirt, black bow tie, and black trousers or skirt or national code dress and decent shoes. Music stands will not be provided for, so it is essential to bring one’s own. The concerts are recorded. DVD Copies will be made available for the participants. The uniqueness and the seriousness of our music course come from the certainty of each participant to benefice from 10 one-to-one sessions with the teacher of one’s choice. The intensity of the workload proposed is quite special: on top of individual tutorial daily session, the chamber music groups are formed on arrival and each student participates in one group. The orchestral work is on ten sessions of one hour and a half each. The Choir and the Chamber Choir operate daily as well
Social Life
The LMFL College summer courses have as their objectives

  • Creating a highly motivating musical atmosphere for all participants, and
  • Encouraging social interaction between all in order to give each student the feeling of belonging to one big musical family.

Social life evolves mainly around music making, evenings busy with our teachers and advanced students giving solo performances or chamber music concerts.

There are two kinds of participants :


  • Non-residential: local students, or participants who choose to live out in hotels, B&B etc, taking two main meals from Sundays to Fridays
  • Residential: those who want full-board and take all their meals at Llandovery College for the duration of the course.

Most halls of residence have kitchens and facilities to prepare tea or coffee. Swimming, tennis (4 tennis courts) and a golf course are at your disposal free of charge. There are several ways to find accommodation for non residents:

  • Some bed and breakfasts around Llandovery College
  • Hotel: some very nice hotels nearby, at walking distance

Adults may also be accommodated at Llandovery College at the rate of £48 (board and lodging) per day. This fee includes the use of all sporting facilities.  All applications must be made in advance.

We must emphasize that Llandovery College College is not a hotel (no double beds, and there are more showers than bathtubs!)


lmfl llandovery music course

Meals : particular care will be taken to provide balanced and enjoyable menus – full English breakfast, « continental » dishes for lunch and dinner, varied salads, and a choice of English desserts. Vegetarian meals are on offer.  In addition, there will be a short pause in the afternoon for tea for those who would like this extra refreshment!

Please make sure you are eligible for a visa: in most circumstances your paid registration file is sufficient to get a visa.

Llandovery Application

If you are ready to apply – you can find the details and forms you need here to apply for the pre-course and main course (three weeks) or just the main course (two weeks). Please make sure you also read the Application Terms and Conditions before filling out your application.

You can also use the application form to explore the many options available and to work out fees.