LBPS member Henry Aitchison reports on musical week in Italy

Hamish Moore, Immediate Past Chair of the LBPS, organised the week of Traditional Song, Music and Dance, which was held in Barga.  A beautiful hill town in Tuscany.  The first School took place some 5 years ago.  The Barga School is philsophically based on the principal of Ceolas, an annual event in South Uist, which Hamish set up in 1996.
Subjects taught were Scottish Bellows Small Pipes (Gary West, Hamish & Fin Moore), Fiddle (Sarah McFadyen,  Melody Cameron),Scots Song (Fiona Hunter), Gaelic Song (Kathleen MacInnes), Step Dance (Melody Cameron & Pat Ballantyne), and Guitar Accompaniment (Derrick Cameron).  All world class tutors from Scotland and Cape Breton.  The School was well attended with 54 students and 10 tutors.  Each day's tuition consisted of first and second choice classes, plus an afternoon integrated class.
Classes were held in the Conservatorio di Santa Elisabetta an ancient monastery built in the 15th. century. Beautiful surroundings for tuition with its history and interiors.
Evening entertainments included Civil Reception, Guided Walk, Whisky Tasting (Barga is the most Scottish town in Italy), Beer Tasting, and Wine and Polenta Night.  Evening informal sessions took place at various venues and piazza's.
The Final Concert for the School, given by the tutors, was held in the Piazza Salvo Salvi in front of a very large enthusiastic audience.  A fitting end to an incredible week.
If you still need further persuasion to consider going to Barga next year, Hamish provides the answer
"Barga provides the rest - The Conservatorio, the welcoming people, the spectacular food, the beauty of the city where magic happens and the chance and random meetings will constantly take place in piazzas and inspire a tune or song - living - soaring - or maybe even heaven."