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At the heart of English folk

Youth Folk Sampler Days

Play by ear and develop your creativity

Learn from inspiring professional musicians

Explore folk music

Find out about the National Youth Folk Ensemble


Every year we run free Youth Folk Sampler Days across England in May/June half-term.

Each Sampler Day features:
• music workshops with highly skilled professional folk artists
• Q&A with Ensemble staff
• optional short audition, if you wish to apply for the National Youth Folk Ensemble

To register for a Sampler Day you will need to:
• be aged 12-18 
• live in England
• be able to play confidently on your chosen instrument 

Save the date

Saturday 23 May: Chesterfield

Sunday 24 May: Gateshead

Monday 25 May: York

Tuesday 26 May: Milton Keynes

Thursday 28 May: Preston

Friday 29 May: Saffron Walden, Essex

Saturday 30 May: Bradford on Avon, Wiltshire

Sunday 31 May: Ashford, Kent

Sampler Days are open to players of any instrument. No experience of folk music necessary. All playing and learning will be done by ear. 

I absolutely loved this experience and it was very empowering playing with others, playing traditional English tunes but making them our own 
Sampler Day participant

If you’re interested in joining the National Youth Folk Ensemble, you’ll need to attend a Sampler Day to start the audition process. Find out more about auditioning.

Sampler Days have previously taken place in Bristol, Birmingham, Basingstoke, Cambridge, Derby, Didcot, Durham, Exeter, Gateshead, Leeds, Liskeard, London, Manchester, Okehampton, Sheffield, Southampton and York.


Arts Council England