Course Information


Magdalen Farm



TA20 4PA


Our next course will be
from 7th to 13th April 2017

Age and Ability

Ages 9 to 16 years


Musical standard between Grade 2 to Grade 8


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Feedback from 2016

We always like to hear from both parents and participants after each course . . .

Bella really enjoyed Magdalen Farm Strings again this year.  She loved the boarding, and although she didn't board last year, we all felt that this year's venue was much better than the one near Axminster in 2015.  Erik and I were particularly impressed by the new conductor, Fiona - she was so engaged and smiley, and Bella also praised her highly.  Bella said she gave them lots of music to choose from, and although she was strict ('in a good way') she was really enthusiastic.  Bella also feels that the sessions this year helped her enormously with her sight-reading. The house mothers were great.  

Thank you so much for organising another wonderful week of music!


I think by this time I should be used to how good Magdalen Farm Strings is, and yet every year it somehow gets even better. The musicians and the staff are both groups of amazing people who help to create a brilliant and relaxed atmosphere which always makes me feel at home. Fiona was an excellent conductor, encouraging us to play to the very best of our abilities, Lucinda's Dalcroze teaching was as enjoyable and interesting as ever and the choir led by Polly was of an incredibly high standard this year- and of course I have to thank you, Sarah, for making it all possible. It was great to be back at Magdalen again for the course, and all the afternoon activities which I took part in were great fun. I'm looking forward to seeing all the photos from this year, which was undoubtedly the best year yet, and I can't wait to come back next year! Patrick


Thank you for an amazing time at Magdalen. I really enjoyed the music we played and seeing all my friends. I even think that this year was better than last year. I particularly liked going into the woods. Harlan


Thank you so much for an EPIC time at Magdalen. I loved it loads. It was great fun seeing all my friends and playing music with them. My favourite bit was in the woods. I hope to see you sooner than next year. Celeste.


I meant to write this as soon as I got back with Mabel but life got in the way. Really above all to say thank you to you all, Mabel had a whale of a time and I’m so glad she won’t have to go back to school the day after next year because she was Exhausted! She talked solidly for half the journey and then flaked out and slept. She was full of how friendly everyone was, she loved the social aspects (your turn as a petulant young violin player in the Variety Show got the single longest and most hilarious recount!) and the outdoor games and enjoyed the dorms, even able to sleep through high jinks and hilarity when she needed to. 
And the music; she was really looking forward to coming but nervous that she might not match up to what might be expected of her, but she enjoyed it all and by the end had enough confidence to wish she’d been a little more challenged. We were impressed at the final concert at how well she played, particularly in her chamber group. When we commented that her playing seemed stronger she said, 'I don’t know about that but I’m definitely more confident' which has been immediately reflected in her playing with the new strings orchestra in East Cornwall where she almost happily took the front desk next to a CYO player - she would have been hiding at the back before. 
She just grew, in those wonderful, intangible ways that life experience affords. She’d known she had an absolute ‘out' if she really needed it, but it was wonderful at home to hear less and less from her because why would you bother to run to the top of the lane to text Mum when it was such a lark on the farm! She’s determined to play with the senior orchestra and dance with the older Dalcroze group next year, and the dates are logged.  Looking forward to it already. Jess and Mabel


Emily says : 'Dalcroze was amazing and really helped with timing and rhythm. Magdalen farm was such fun and I enjoyed it a lot! I definitely want to go again next year. Thank you Sarah for a great week.' 
We thought the standard of the end of course concert was outstanding and was very impressed with everything that had been achieved.  They played with an amazing sense of ensemble. Great repertoire too. What a perfect way to spend a week if the Easter holidays!

Rudyard had a fantastic time once again this year.  He really enjoyed the music making, the company, the games, the raft building, the mud flinging.... Many thanks yet again for all your hard work in making it such an inspiring week - a firm favourite of the year now!


Samidi and Chirathi had a wonderful time in Magdalen Farm ..They said it was one of their best times in their life.


Abigail writes: I loved the week I spent at Magdalen Farm Strings this year! I really enjoyed playing all the different music at the course and I liked how I got the chance to play in the main orchestra with everyone, the smaller orchestra and a chamber group; I think my playing has improved and all the teachers are helpful and encouraging. I had lots of fun doing activities on the farm in the afternoon, my favourite was the raft building and water fight in the river. One of the other things about the course which is so good is the choir, and I really liked the pieces we sang. Lucinda is great at doing Dalcroze sessions with us and choosing exercises which help us with things we're playing at the time so we can get the timings right and become more musical players. Boarding was so much fun and I've made some really good friends through going to Magdalen; I can't wait to come again next year.