Boxwood Australia


February 22-25, 2019

Boxwood returns to beautiful & historic Queenscliff February 22-25, 2019 for a long-weekend of immersion in traditional music. Join us for four days of musical discovery and fun with John Carty (Irish fiddle, banjo, guitar & flute), Chris Norman (flutes, small pipes), Rennie Pearson (DADGAD guitar, flutes, whistle & chef). Boxwood Australia is a magical experience with very limited enrollment and small class sizes, so please register early. Our venues for classe include the historic Whitehall Lodge, and St. Georges Church, both in the heart of Queenscliff just a short stroll to the waterfront. While the week in Queenscliff emphasizes the fiddle, flutes, whistles & pipes. students and players of all instruments at all levels; this course caters for a wide range of ability but is designed to challenge as well as inspire.


2018 Tutors & Performers:

A schedule will be available as the event draws closer; classes and activities will include:

  • Irish fiddle - (all bowed strings welcome including viola, cello, etc)
  • Flute - simple system and modern flutes; Scottish, Irish, Quebecois & Cape Breton tunes
  • Whistle - in D
  • Scottish small pipes - ancient and unusual tunes are explored
  • Guitar - DADGAD style fingerpicking and backup
  • Songs & ballads - from the Celtic and North American traditions
  • Improv in Trad - with Chris
  • Sessions
  • Seaside walks
  • Local craft beer & wine tastings - (BYO-pot-luck)

February 22 - 25, 2019:

Friday February 22
Arrive at Whitehall late afternoon and gather for an evening meal of home-made local specialties. A session will follow.

Saturday February 23
Daily classes with John Carty, Chris Norman, Rennie Pearson

Sunday February 24
Daily classes with John Carty, Chris Norman, Rennie Pearson

7:30pm Evening Concert at St. George's Church

Monday February 25
Morning classes with John Carty, Chris Norman, Rennie Pearson
Afternoon session
Departure by 4pm

Pricing Structure:

Prices for the 2018 weekend in Queenscliff, VIC are in Australian dollars (AUD)

Full Tuition: $290 - Includes classes, activities & meals

Work Study/Teens/Guest Pass: $190 - Includes classes, activities & meals
Work Study participants will assist with meal prep & clean-up as well as concert operations.
The Guest Pass is reserved for guests & family of Boxwood participants.

Teens age 12-17 are welcome with adult supervision. Contact Sarah Wade for more information about Boxwood Teens.

A La Carte day rate:
Thursday: $40 includes Thursday activities and a meal
Friday: $95 includes Friday classes, activities and meals
Saturday: $95 includes Saturday classes, activities and meals
Sunday: $95 includes Sunday classes, activities and meals

Session Only:
Anyone is welcome to come to the nightly Sessions. If you would like a Bed in one of the shared bedrooms for the night, there is a $75 fee which includes Breakfast the next morning. There is no need to register for this, the fee will be collected at the Session.
Bed and Brekfast after a Session: $75 at the door.

$165 for all three nights with shared bedroom and shared bathroom
$120 for two nights with shared bedroom and shared bathroom
$75 for one night only with shared bedroom and shared bathroom
$300 for single room with shared bathroom (Limited Availability. Applicable to 3-night bookings only)

How to Register:

Registration will begin here in October 2018


John CARTY - Irish fiddle, banjo, tenor guitar, flute

John Carty is one of Ireland’s finest traditional musicians having been awarded the Irish Television station, TG4’s Traditional Musician of the Year in 2003. Born in London, fiddle and banjo player Carty has established himself among the elite in Irish traditional music and as a staunch supporter of its preservation. He developed his love for fiddle, banjo, and flute, all of which he has mastered,through his multi-instrumentalist father who was a member of the Glenside Ceili Band in London in the 1960’s. John performs regularly with Chieftain’s flautist Matt Molloy exploring the North Connaught tradition they both love. In 2008 they released Pathway to the Well a CD of their music accompanied by Arty McGlynn. A new release by the pair is due out in late 2016. In 2011 John released The Crimson Path, collaboration with Sligo poet Ann Joyce, which is a CD of original poetry and music for which John composed all the music. This was quickly followed by the release of At Complete Ease, a duet fiddle album with Brian Rooney from Kiltclogher, Co Leitrim. This CD has already been described as one of the all times greats of duet playing. John is also a member of super group, Patrick Street which includes legendary musicians Andy Irvine and Kevin Burke. He has also appeared as a special guest with the Chieftains and De Danaan. Apart from performing and recording John has also been instrumental in getting many other musicians to record and has produced many albums such as Brian Rooney’s acclaimed albums ‘The Godfather’ and ‘From Leitrim to London’. John has recently put together a new eight piece band, The John Carty Festival band which was launched in summer 2012 and has since played at festivals in Ireland and the UK.

Chris NORMAN - director, traditional & early flutes, small pipes, song

Born in Halifax, Nova Scotia into a music loving family, Chris’ influential work as performer, composer, recording artist, teacher and flutemaker has earned him worldwide recognition. His flute playing has appeared on more than 40 recordings and can be heard featured on numerous Hollywood soundtracks. Chris is founder and director of the Boxwood Festivals and Workshops taking place for the past 20 years in Canada, New Zealand, and the US, inspiring thousands of musicians of all ages. As a flute maker, he brings to bear a discernment forged over a 30-year career to make world-class flutes for traditional, baroque and renaissance music. The Senate of Dalhousie University voted to award Chris a Doctor of Laws, honoris causa in 2015 in recognition of his artistic achievements and contributions to the community.

“. . .Norman stands out for his spirited eclecticism . . . His rootsy heritage shines through in every nuanced embellishment, trill, triple tonguing, and silky slide. It’s clear that Norman is having a ball, with the chops to make it sound effortless.” -- Billboard Magazine

“ . . .a flute player of spectacular & imaginative virtuosity” -- The New Yorker Magazine

“A flute superstar . . .the musicianship just came wailing out” --Toronto Globe & Mail

Rennie PEARSON - guitar, flutes, whistle, chef

Rennie is a multi-instrumentalist based in Golden Bay, NZ specializing in flutes, whistles, vocals and DADGAD tuned guitar.The journey started for Rennie before he was even born, with his mother playing him the music of flute virtuoso Chris Norman whilst still in her womb. By 15 he was immersed in the New Zealand traditional Irish music culture, attending weekly sessions and learning off stalwarts of Irish flute playing tradition in New Zealand; Pat Higgins and Brendyn Montgomery. With a firm footing in Irish music, Rennie has delved into the traditions of Scottish and Canadian music, sparking a great thirst for knowledge with has led him to pursue music from all over the world including the ancient classical music from India. Ren works with fiddler/piper Oscar West in the duo Polytropos and has collaborated with a wide range of musicians in performance and recording.



Registration for Boxwood 2019 is limited and is filled on a first come first serve basis upon full payment of tuition. Places cannot be held with a deposit. No Refunds will be made after January 15, 2019. Refund requests made on or before January 15, 2019 will receive a refund within 30 days of receipt of the full amount paid minus a $50 administrative charge. There are no refunds for work study participants. Cancellations prior to this time will be subject to the abovementioned $50 administrative charge.


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