Start date: 24/10/20
End date: 25/10/20
Time: 12:00 am - 12:00 am
Location: ONLINE!
Concerts | Major Events | Online Events | Workshops

Nonsuch Annual Weekend is ONLINE – October 24-25th 2020!!

NEW: Tip Jars for our Tutors are here.

Nonsuch announces a fabulous two days of workshops for both hammered and mountain dulcimer players, a concert and an online session/open mic for the weekend of October 24th – 25th 2020. All events will be held via Zoom online – we have included test sessions so that you can try out Zoom and chat to other Nonsuch members before the weekend.


Annual Weekend Events


Nonsuch Anual Weekend 2020 Schedule

Workshops – Cost £25 per workshop

You can choose either a Hammered Dulcimer or Mountain Dulcimer workshop for each afternoon. You can register for Saturday and/or Sunday workshops. Some workshops are one single topic with additional depth. Others offer two sessions with different topics covered within the workshop – registration is for the entire workshop.

Our aim is that players at all levels above absolute beginner will enjoy and learn something from these workshops.  Please check the workshop descriptions for details. If you are unsure whether the workshop is for you, please contact Hilary Davies for more information. Each tutor will include breaks during the workshop.

Saturday Afternoon Workshops: 2:30 – 5:30 pm UK (9:30 – 12:30 USA EDT)

Mark Alan Wade (Hammered Dulcimer) USA

Don Pedi (Mountain Dulcimer) (USA)

Sunday Afternoon Workshops: 3:00 – 6:00 pm UK (11:00 – 2:00 USA EDT)

(The clocks go back in the UK Saturday night – so the USA times are different!)

Katie Moritz (Hammered Dulcimer) USA

Geoff Reeve-Black and Duncan Gibbs (Mountain Dulcimer) (UK)

  • Session 1: Blues in DAD (without the 1+ fret!)
  • Session 2: A Manx Midwinter – Carols and tunes from an Isle of Man Winter

Saturday Concert – Cost: £5

Our five tutors will participate in an online concert from 6pm – 7pm.

You can tip our tutors during or after the concert here:

Sunday Online Session – Free*

This will be an online session for all instruments. We will ask for suggestions and offers to lead tunes and songs in advance, and there will be a Nonsuch member hosting the session. *This session will only be available to those who have booked for some other part of the weekend.

Online Social Hour and Zoom Test Sessions – Free

The first session on Tuesday 29th September at 3pm is available to anyone thinking of attending the week-end. A zoom link was sent out to all Nonsuch members on 23rd September. If you are not a member or do not have the link, and would like to attend, please contact Hilary Davies.

The second session on Friday 23rd October at 7:30pm is only open to those who have booked for the weekend. A zoom link will be sent with the information pack.

Nonsuch Dulcimer Club AGM – For All Members, Free

The Nonsuch AGM is being held online during the weekend. All Nonsuch members received a Zoom link together with an information pack at the beginning of October. You do not need to book for the weekend in order to attend. More information is available here.

Workshop Descriptions

Mark Alan Wade (Hammered Dulcimer) (USA) – Saturday 24th, 2:30 – 5:30 pm

Session 1: Adding Chords to Melodies

This hands-on workshop will teach you easy to use strategies to bolster your melodies with chords and harmonies. Mastering this skill makes your solo playing sound full and complete. Mark will break down these strategies by ability level so novice and advanced players alike will learn something new and fun.

Session 2: Playing in the Appalachian Style

Mark comes from a long line of Appalachian musicians. This mountain range isolated old-time players and resulted in a playing style that is unique in traditional American music. Mark has spent the last 30 years playing in this style (& many others) and has distilled its core style traits into an easy to learn workshop. Novice and advanced players alike will enjoy learning a clever new tune and how to play it with an Appalachian accent.

Don Pedi (Mountain Dulcimer) (USA) – Saturday 24th, 2:30 – 5:30 pm

Traditional Songs, Ballads and Tunes from the Southern Appalachian Mountains

In a relaxed and inclusive setting, we will explore a variety of Traditional Songs, Ballads and Tunes from the Southern Appalachian Mountains. Much of the American music has roots in England, Ireland & Scotland.

A brief dulcimer history, with a demonstration of an antique dulcimer combined with a little information about the source musicians helps to create the sense of sharing in the tradition.

Strumming and fingering techniques will be suggested for developing economy of motion and an “Old-Time” feel that translates well to the dulcimer. 

Katie Moritz (Hammered Dulcimer) (USA) – Sunday 25th, 3:00 – 6:00 pm

Let Your Dulcimer Sound Out! – Using the Bass Bridge for Accompaniment

Leading with either hand – fun exercises with bass notes:

My approach comes from a history of playing mostly traditional music with a leading right hand. I struggled with wanting to play more accompaniment, while depending heavily on my right hand for melody. During the first portion of this workshop, I will introduce a couple of fun exercises in using the bass bridge to achieve a fuller sound. Both of these exercises are friendly and adaptable to players ranging from past-beginner to advanced.

We will start with incorporating the bass bridge while still leading with the right hand, then move on to an exercise in hand separation, and left hand leading that shows how to know which notes to play on the bass bridge. My goal is not to encourage anyone to completely reverse their leading hand, but to be open to fluidity in leading hand and accuracy using the right-hand on the bass bridge.

Accompany a tune with a fuller sound:

These exercises are training the brain and the hands. After the break, we will look at how to incorporate these skills into actual music.  Using a suitable tune we will build an arrangement that incorporates a mixture of leading hands, bass bridge accompaniments and treble bridge embellishments. The approach will start out simple for less experienced players. I will introduce more advanced concepts as we progress.

Handouts with links to video support and review material will be provided.

Geoff Reeve-Black and Duncan Gibbs (Mountain Dulcimer) (UK) – Sunday 25th, 3:00 – 6:00 pm

Session 1: Blues in DAD (without the 1+ fret!)

Learn the Blues in different keys, but using standard DAD tuning and without the need for a 1+ fret.  Using examples by Blues masters Elmore James and Robert Johnson, you will get an introduction to the basic 12 bar structure, blues riffs, turnarounds, and push chords. 

Mainly targeted at intermediate players, this session is also suitable for Novice and Upper Intermediate players.

Session 2: A Manx Midwinter – Carols and tunes from an Isle of Man Winter

We will explore three tunes from the distinctive folk heritage of the Isle of Man – a winter tune, a robust carol and a ceremonial song.  The contrasting styles will allow us to explore the versatility of the dulcimer, utilising drone-style and chord-melody techniques in different tunings.  A capo will be required for one tune.  

We will explore each tune at different levels, making the class suitable for Advanced Beginners through to Advanced players. 


Music for the workshops and zoom links will be made available a few days beforehand. This is so that you are able to download handouts, and listen to any audio/video files in advance. If you have time, you can listen to the music and work though the tunes on your dulcimer before the class. However your instructors will not expect this.

You will need to be able to download the most up-to-date version of Zoom before attending the event. A laptop or iPad work best, but a smart phone is also fine. To get the best settings check our Zoom Guidelines. If you are unfamiliar with the technology and need help, please join one of the Social Hour sessions or contact Hilary Davies.

You could also join one of the regular Nonsuch Online Zoom sessions to try it out. Please contact Hilary Davies if you need any further information or advice about the weekend.


The cost for the workshops is £25 per person per workshop, and the concert is £5 per person.

Bookings have now closed for the weekend.

Contact Hilary Davies if you have queries.