Singing With Nightingales: Festival

at Secret Location, Sussex
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Please note: Info provided by the Event Organiser

This May, join folk singer Sam Lee and three special guest musicians on a rare and thrilling journey as darkness falls upon the woodlands of Sussex.

Enjoy an afternoon of workshops, nature experiences, and a campfire concert, followed by the after-dark safari itself. Experience a festival like no other as our guest musicians join the nightingales in an improvised duet with their brilliant nightsong.

Each year, for a short period mid-April, a few thousand nightingales fly to southern UK from Africa. They can be heard in just a small number of special locations, taking up songful residence after dusk. The territorial males serenade loyally each night for no more than six weeks among the blackthorn and forest margins, giving unbelievable privilege to those who know where to go.

Step into nature, learn about these majestic birds, and marvel at the incredible human-avian musical collaboration.

We are very pleased to announce our special guest musicians are:

Bernard Butler • English musician and record producer. One of Britain’s most original and influential guitarists.

Millicent Chapanda • Traditional mbira player and proud cultural artist with a vibrant mission.

Byron Wallen • A true jazz spirit. Byron’s always-absorbing music genuinely draws in disparate elements of African and Eastern cultures.

The festival includes:

• Songs, storytelling and folklore with your host Sam Lee and musical guests around the campfire

• Promenade walks through the woods in small groups to hear our guest musicians joined in improvised collaborations with the nightingales

• Nature immersion, camp craft skills and foraging workshops from 4pm

• A delicious vegan dinner available

• Optional overnight camping

What’s the difference between the Festival and your other Singing With Nightingales events?

The festival will involve a larger crowd, rather than the more intimate Singing with Nightingale events for around 30 people. It will feature 3 performances with different artists, each performing their own duet with the nightingales. Guests will be invited to join a range of workshop activities during the day, including nature immersion, camp craft skills, and foraging. Also, your ticket to the Festival does not include dinner & drinks, which can be purchased on site instead.

For information on camping please see ticket options.

This event is deliverable safely within current Covid regulations, and we hope the future situation will allow us to hold this event and our full Singing with Nightingales season. However, should Covid force us to cancel the event, guests will be entitled to full refunds.


Bernard Butler

Former member of Suede now going alone. He has been hailed by some critics as the greatest guitarist of his generation, as well as one of Britain's most original and influential guitarists.

See Bernard Butler tour dates

Sam Lee

Sam Lee appearing at this event

Sam Lee is a folk singer, promoter and animateur. A naturally gifted voice, Sam is fast becoming accepted as a new pioneer, defining the sound, sight and texture of contemporary folksong. With his live band, Sam Lee and Friends, he carves a new acoustic with homemade and mongrelised instrumentation using unconventional and contemporary arrangements that challenging preconceptions of what 'traditional folk' should sound like. He is a former Mercury Prize nominatee, song collector, promoter (of BBC award winning Nest Collective) radio host, TV personality, teacher and animateur.

See 8 tour dates featuring Sam Lee

Byron Wallen

Byron Wallen appearing at this event

Byron Wallen is ‘one of the most innovative, exciting and original trumpet players alive’ (Jazzwise Magazine).As well as touring, playing with a wide variety of well known artists such as Mica Paris, Caron Wheeler, Shola Ama, Roland Gift, Desmond Dekker, Janet Kay and Grace Jones, and playing the trumpet in movies such as The Talented Mr. Ripley and De-Lovely: The Cole Porter Story, Byron is also a teacher and a composer with several albums, including Indigo, which contributed towards his BBC award for Innovation in Jazz.

See 3 tour dates featuring Byron Wallen

Also Appearing

Millicent Chapanda

Secret Location

  • Sussex

Find places to stay on Sat 1st May 2021