Learn to play a ukulele ensemble piece

Tan y Bwlch is a beautiful new ukulele ensemble piece written to help build confidence in your playing and develop your general musicianship. It's also very satisfying to play as each part brings something special to the overall sound.

Help to prepare for group ukulele playing

This course will prepare you for group playing by taking you through the process of learning an original ukulele piece composed by Richard Durrant. The piece is a ukulele quartet. One solo ukulele is accompanied by three other ukuleles or three groups of ukuleles.

The standard of all three student uke parts is fairly similar - but if you like the sound of one in particular, or think that the techniques used will benefit your playing, then go ahead and learn that part.

Learn to play different parts

The beauty of this course is that you can play along with the other parts in your own mini-performance.

Before beginning the course it's worth taking time to listen to Tan y Bwlch in its entirety. Once you are familiar with the sound of the piece you will find learning the different parts much easier. We also recommend that you download and print out the part for your chosen group. You can use the part to make copious notes before you memorise it and throw it away!

A souvenir score of Tan y Bwlch is also available.

Here's a taster of what you will learn: Movementment 2: Cledrau

Course curriculum

  • 1

    Group Performance of Tan y Bwylch

    • Introduction to Tan y Bwylch

    • Tan y Bwlch - The complete piece on mp3

    • Group One Playthrough Video

    • Group Two Playthrough Video

    • Group Three Playthrough Video

  • 2

    Tan y Bwlch - Movement I "Penmaenbach"

    • Movement I Introduction

    • Movement I - Penmaenbach - mp3 for download

    • Movement I Downloads

    • Movement I Group 1 Play Along

    • Movement I Group 1 Tutorial

    • Movement I Group 2 Play Along

    • Movement I Group 2 Tutorial

    • Movement I Group 3 Play Along

    • Movement I Group 3 Tutorial

  • 3

    Tan y Bwlch - Movement II "Cledrau"

    • Movement II - Cledrau - mp3 for download

    • Movement II Downloads

    • Movement II Group 1 Play Along

    • Movement II Group 1 Tutorial

    • Movement II Group 2 Play Along

    • Movement II Group 2 Tutorial

    • Movement II Group 3 Play Along

    • Movement II Group 3 Tutorial

  • 4

    Tan y Bwlch - Movement III "Gogoniant"

    • Movement III Introduction

    • Movement III - Gogoniant - mp3 for download

    • Movement III Downloads

    • Movement III Group 1 Play Along

    • Movement III Group 1 Tutorial

    • Movement III Group 2 Play Along

    • Movement III Group 2 Tutorial

    • Movement III Group 3 Play Along

    • Movement Three Group 3 Tutorial


5 star rating

Great Way To Learn To Play This Gorgeous Piece!

J C Muff

It's unusual to have a multi-part piece composed entirely for ukulele. This programmatic three-movement offering from Richard Durrant takes inspiration from the Welsh countryside & steam railway & is arranged for three groups plus solo uke...

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It's unusual to have a multi-part piece composed entirely for ukulele. This programmatic three-movement offering from Richard Durrant takes inspiration from the Welsh countryside & steam railway & is arranged for three groups plus solo uke. It mixes lyrical, melodic themes evoking the countryside, with a more humorous mixture of repeated motifs & percussive sound effects for the train itself. Nicely layered, it sounds very intricate as a whole & is largely based on short repeated sections within each part. There are several ways of listening to the entire piece and to each movement - with all parts playing together & also individually, both video & mp3. The videos are great, with Richard gently counting you into when you need to start playing for your part. And then group parts 1, 2 & 3 each have their own tutorial videos for movements I, II & III. As with his other courses, the videos are clearly shot, with concise, helpful instructions & tips on any tricky sections from Richard as he walks you through each tutorial. In case you are unfamiliar with reading music, he also explains how the notation works in the pdf scores, including things like repeat marks & pauses. If you've done his Ukulele Launch Pad, you will already be familiar with the notation for hand positioning & fingering, plus things like the strumming pattern & tremolo. Richard takes you through carefully, explaining you will benefit from learning your part rather than rely on reading the score. As there are various repeated sections in each movement, you soon start to pick this up & play more confidently. As with anything like this, he gently reminds you to rewind & watch repeatedly until you absorb his teaching. I haven't yet chosen which part to concentrate on - my fingers ideally need to grow in length slightly to make a couple of the chord shapes in a few places (good job I only play a soprano)! - but it's enjoyable to play along in the tutorial & I look forward to having practised enough to play along properly to the full piece. It's challenging but certainly not as difficult as I thought it would be when I first heard the music, now it's all been broken down. If there are several of you, you can play this as a proper ensemble along to the recordings. It would have been nice to have tutorials on the solo uke part but maybe Richard is hoping to travel round & play at various ukulele groups round the country to accompany his work :) Or perhaps that's going to be another course available soon. Hugely enjoyable & I hope plenty of uke players take up the challenge of learning Tan y Bwlch. Many thanks. Jeanette People of Lewisham's Ukulele Club (PLUC)

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