EarthSings 2014 - Singing for Unity and Wellbeing

This programme is not currently scheduled.

For details of registration and programme start time see here.

with special guest Kathy Bullock, Nana Mzhavanadze, Fiona Mackenzie and Susie Prater

Special Event
12–19 April 2014

Our commitment to singing as a path of healing, celebration and union through spirit is the impetus for the Foundation to again host an EarthSings conference.

Through harmony singing, mantra chanting, devotional and community singing in nature, we intend to create a healing field within which we can achieve transformation through song. As Ella Fitzgerald once said, "The only thing better than singing is more singing."

After the phenomenal success of our EarthSings conference in the Spring of 2013, we are back again with the incredible teacher and performer Kathy Bullock, who shares from the African American tradition. Kathy has the ability to inspire and motivate people and she brings the audience quickly to their feet.

Our other guest teachers/performers are:

  • Nana Mzhavanadze - Georgian Harmony singing
  • Fiona Mackenzie - teaching Gaelic song and performing with the four-piece band Cruinn
  • Girish - Kirtan singing from India. Known on the Bhaktifest circuit, he will perform a concert featuring his eclectic approach to sacred music
  • Susie Prater - directs the Shakti Sings Choir at the Glastonbury Festival and will be offering workshops directed at encouraging younger singers.

Hosted by Peter Vallance with local song teachers Bill Henderson, Kate O'Connell and Barbara Swetina, the conference will feature daytime workshops, participatory events and evening concerts.

Tiered price (click here for more information): £1010 / £770 / £630

Tiered Pricing

We want to ensure that our workshops and events are accessible to a diverse range of people and recognise that one person’s financial situation will differ from another. So that money is not a barrier to participating in our workshops and events, we offer a tiered pricing structure and ask that you select the price appropriate for your personal circumstances. Please take a moment to read about our tiered pricing here.

Includes 7 nights accommodation and all meals.

Please note:
We are also offering an option to participate in this event non-residentially for a fixed price of £250, which includes all the sessions and refreshments, but excludes accommodation and meals. To book this option only please click here.

To book the residential option please use the booking link above on the right.

Presenters include:


Kathy Bullock, teacher of African-American sacred music, brings her deep appreciation of music's beauty, power and spiritual possibilities. She is a Professor of Music at Berea College, Kentucky, where she also directs the Black Music Ensemble, a 70-voice choir that specialises in performance of African-American sacred music. Dr. Bullock presents performances, lectures and workshops in the United States and Africa in the area of African-American music and culture and its influences/connections to other cultures. She has recently been on a research trip to study of African music and culture and will present some of this material. Dr. Bullock brings to her programmes a rich cultural heritage and tradition. She also brings a love and passion for music of all kinds, a deep appreciation of music's beauty, power and spiritual possibilities, and an infectious excitement in the performing and sharing of it with others.
Kathy's website.


Nana Mzhavanadze
Songs from Georgia

Eminent ethnomusicologist Nana Mzhavanadze was born in the mountainous region of Western Georgia into a long line of traditional village harmony song-masters and mistresses. As a child, polyphony was still a way of life, and daily work and ritual life was shared together in song. Nana then went on to the Tbilisi Music Conservatory to study her musical tradition. She is now involved with some research projects funded by the Patriarch of Georgia, and continues to promote her culture's ancient musical medicine in her work with the Georgian Charity Brave Heart Georgia. Blessed with a singing voice of exquisite delicacy, and a gentle and enabling teaching style, Nana has developed a unique singing and teaching repertoire. Nana is supported by Ecologia Youth Trust in Findhorn.


Fiona Mackenzie and Cruinn
Gaelic Song

Emerging as one of Scotland's most distinctive singer-songwriters, Fiona Mackenzie has been applauded by critics across the globe for her unique blend of traditional and contemporary song in Scottish Gaelic and English. Her voice ranges from gentle and tender to full and forceful, while her lyrics are always thought provoking and insightful. She also has a particularly ingenious turn of phrase, writing lyrics that invoke emotions on the listener. Fiona will teach an ongoing workshop and will be joined by her fellow musicians of Cruinn for an evening concert. The Highland based quartet Cruinn brings together four of Scotland's premier Gaelic singers - James Graham, Fiona Mackenzie, Brian ÓhEadhra and Rachel Walker. As individuals they have earned high distinction for their musicianship and performances. Collectively as Cruinn they are fast earning a reputation for their presentations of songs in Gaelic, both traditional and contemporary, and are admired for their outstanding use of harmonies and superb arrangements.
Cruinn's website.
Fiona's website.


Susie Prater
Alchemy of Song

Susie creates a space in which people's voices can really be free and also loves working with the dynamic energy of teenagers and young people. Being only 26 herself, she is able to connect with this age group and inspire their voices and their creativity to expand to their full potentials in a joyful and relaxed way. Susie works with a lot of young people at Glastonbury Festival where she is Musical Director for a 150-person choir who sing their way courageously and joyfully all over the festival site. Susie writes her own songs and teaches harmony songs from all over the world. She has developed powerful exercises to inspire group songwriting and individuals to embody the confidence to be totally free with their voices and their creativity - The Alchemy of Song. This creative element is woven together with the teaching of heart opening songs in full harmony.
Susie's website.


Peter Vallance is your host for the EarthSings Festival. He has lived in the community for 25 years where he is a storyteller, dance workshop leader and Artistic Director of the Universal Hall. Peter's website.

The following community artists will all be contributing in different ways to the EarthSings Festival.


Kate O’Connell has been a song and voice facilitator for over 25 years. She draws inspiration from the Scottish landscape and culture and likes to share the joy of singing with others. Kate's website.


Bill Henderson has been leading community music groups for 20 years. He uses music to create community, foster harmony and stimulate self-discovery. Bill's website.


Barbara Swetina is a gifted musician who plays many instruments with a wide repertoire of songs. She brought sacred harmony singing into the heart of the community and leads workshops internationally. Barbara's website.