Ukulele Song Group
For those with some experience this is a chance to focus in detail on arrangements for particular songs
and how to perform them. Have your chance to select the songs to work on. May include the option
of field trips and performance.
Who is this course for
This course is suitable for improvers, or for multi-instrumentalists taking up the ukulele for the first time, but with some prior musical knowledge. You may have completed the Mary Ward centre's Beginners course, or learned the ukulele basics elsewhere. Perhaps you're self-taught, but keen to advance on the instrument in a more social setting. This course will focus on playing for pleasure. We'll work together on tunes you like, and there will be the opportunity to choose some of the songs we look at together on the course. We'll cover a broad range of musical styles, including pop, rock, jazz, folk, and blues.
What does this course cover
The course will develop your playing song by song. Each new number will challenge and stretch your playing technique in new ways.
With a focus on playing songs in a group or club situation, we'll cover plenty of chords and strum patterns to provide you with what you need to go along to a ukulele night and join in. We'll look at good positioning and technique, whilst learning a repertoire of songs and chords.
Reading chord charts and making simple notation will also be introduced to aid the learning of songs. All of this will be done in a supportive group environment.
As we progress through the course you can expect to learn more advanced techniques, such as barre chords and melody playing.
The course is designed to build your confidence playing with others, whether they're on ukuleles or other instruments. It will also help you to develop the skills to play and sing at the same time. Towards the end of the course you will have the opportunity to perform what you have learnt.
What will it be like
What you should be able to do by the end of the course:
- Play the songs as recommended by the tutor, solo or in an ensemble
- Demonstrate good technique and positioning
- Refer to a range of chords
- Read a chord chart and understand chord symbols for ukulele
- Demonstrate an understanding of ukulele tablature (simple notation)
- Tune the ukulele
- Demonstrate a developed confidence with singing and playing simultaneously
The teaching and learning methods we use on the course:
- Demonstrations and tutor feedback
- Multimedia resources - chord charts, video/audio etc
- Practical exercises
- Group discussions
How we assess your progress on the course:
- Constructive feedback, one-to-one and in groups
What extra study/practice we expect you to do outside the class:
- Practice recommended songs
- Optional exercises to aid further progression
- Further listening and viewing encouraged!
What else do you need to buy or do
It is essential that you bring your own soprano, tenor or concert ukulele. There are plenty of usable and affordable ukuleles on the market, but anything priced around £40 should be a decent instrument. Have a look at brands such as Lanikai or Kala. The Duke of Uke in Cheshire Street off Brick Lane stocks a wide range of ukuleles and can offer great advice. If you have any queries regarding types of ukulele, brands, where to buy etc, please contact Jackie Wamaitha, who will put you in touch with the course tutor for advice. .
Also recommended but not essential: a chromatic tuner (e.g. Korg Pitchclip), typically around £10-£15; pen and paper for making notes.
What this course could lead to
Keep playing! Joining a ukulele group is a very good way to stay in practice. Your tutor can help you find one if necessary.
Ukulele festivals and events offer a great opportunity to learn new techniques at workshops, meet fellow ukulele players, and enjoy playing together in large mass jams, as well as watching world-class ukulele players perform on stage.
You may also want to join - or even start your own - ukulele band one day, and perform on the open mic at a ukulele event.
I've been to many Centres to study in London and the Mary Ward Centre is one of the nicest I've studied in.MWC student
This course has concessions available for people who meet certain criteria
Got a Question about this Course?
Contact The Departmental Administrator.
Why come to Mary Ward Centre?
Mary Ward Centre is the adult education centre with a difference. We provide a wide range of subjects for people at all levels and run courses during the day, evening or weekend to suit your timetable.
Get inspired and enjoy excellent teaching in an environment where each individual’s learning experience is valued. That’s what makes Mary Ward Centre ‘the friendly place to learn.’