Filk Festival

British Filk Convention
7-9 February 2003
Holiday Inn, Ipswich, Suffolk


Our Hotel -- Holiday Inn, Ipswich

Formerly known as “The Posthouse, Ipswich”, the hotel is conveniently situated just off the junction of the A12 and the A14. This makes it easy to find for those coming from the south and west of the country (A12) and those coming from the north and midlands (A14). There is a fast Inter-City train service from London Liverpool Street (1h 9m) run by Anglia Railways and a slower and cheaper service run by First Great Eastern. (Please note that the tickets are not interchangable between the two services.)

The hotel lays back from the main road and has parking spaces for 200 vehicles. The 110 bedrooms are in a block to the left of the main entrance and the bar/lounge, restaurant and function rooms are to the right. This means that no-one should be disturbed by our music, no matter how late into the morning it continues. The hotel also has a health spa containing gymnasium, swimming pool and sauna.

Room rate is £30 ($50) per person per night. Children under 19 sharing their parent's room are accommodated free. The room rate includes breakfast.

We have three function rooms booked, two for programme items and one as a combined dealer's room/secure store. The main programme room has a white screen at the performers end, so if anyone feels like adding a video or slide presentation to their slot it would be another first for Quinze. The bar will be open all day and until the early hours of the morning. We are looking at getting local ale stocked for the convention. A playroom for children aged 4 and under will be available, but responsibility for the supervision of children will rest with the parents.


The hotel has requested both a booking deposit and a cut-off date for bookings. Booking deposit is £15 ($25) per person over 19.

There is also a Room Services deposit of £25 ($40) per room per night to cover the use of the mini bar, video viewing, telephone calls and main bar charges to the room. This deposit is payable when you arrive. If you do not want to use this facility you will need to say so on the hotel booking form.

The closing date for hotel bookings via the convention will be 15 December 2002. This is the date it must be with me and please remember that the postal service is usually extra busy at that time of year. Room rates cannot be guaranteed after this date. Please send your completed forms and cheques made payable to “Holiday Inn” to:

QFF, 83 Dales View Road, Ipswich, Suffolk, IP1 4HJ England.

(Prices quoted in US Dollars have been rounded up to allow for exchange rate fluctuations, and ease of administration <grin>)

Hilary Ann -- Hotel Liaison

The Programme

The programme for Quinze is beginning to fill up nicely... (i.e. rapidly! =:o} )

First, the "Main Concert", as it's traditionally known over here in the UK, is undergoing a name change and a rules change. We've heeded the concerns of those who failed to get a slot in the over-full concerts of recent years, and the bewilderment of those who think "Main Concert" sounds like something far too grand for the likes of their modest contributions... So to make it clear(er...ish...) what it's all about, we're adopting the Apalling Americanism (TM) of "One-shots". That means each participant gets to sing one song, and one only. There's a also a time limit of 10 minutes per participant, which includes your set-up. (The ideal song length is generally under five minutes, but we recognise that some folks may have something slightly longer in mind.) The One-shots concert will also be split across the Saturday and Sunday, so that day-visitors get a chance to join in and so we can help keep the timing under control.

So, what if you have more than one song? In general, program slots will be of the following lengths (including set-up):

"Short" - 20 minutes

"Full" - 40 minutes

"Extra long" - 60 minutes

The extra long slots are intended for bands needing extensive set-up, and other big clusters of performers, while the short slots are perfect for those folks who can't really run to a full set, but who would find the "One-shots" concert too restricting. Of course, as ever, you can also opt to share a slot with someone else, if that suits your purposes.

By the time you read this, those who have already requested slots should theoretically all have heard from me with specific confirmation, and to sort out details. <LONG PAUSE> Yeah, well I did say theoretically... =:o} Anyway, if you haven't heard, you may now consider yourself legitimately entitled to pester me about it! Meanwhile, those who would still like to book a slot, there are just a few left, so get in quick!

What we would like, however, is a few items slightly more tailored to the loosely defined themes of the con, these being:

"Cannes" - Film and media oriented stuff.

"Can-can" - Dance? Costume? Frenchness?

"Cans" - (a) The bar will of course be well stocked! But what other filkish inspiration does canned lager bring you...? =:o}

(b) Headphones. Sound tech stuff. We've got some good ideas for this already (well, whaddya expect from me and Keris? =:o} ), but for the moment (and being careful not to explain our own ideas, so as not to prejudice yours) what would people like to see, and what would the techie-minded people like to offer to do for us?

"Quinze" - The number fifteen. What does that stir in you? It has fiveness. It has threeness. It has 66-and-two-thirds percent more threeness than it has fiveness; but hey, above all it has one big dollop of fifteenness! What can we do with it?

By "item" I don't necessarily mean a 40 minute programme slot. It could be just a single song; or some piece of artwork we stick up in the main hall for the weekend; or a linked set of little items scattered through the weekend; something you wear; something you eat; something you hit people with and shout "Gowza!!"...

Remember, we have two nice big rooms to play with! Brainstorm. Go wild. Think outside the box, because inside the box it's too dark, and there may or may not be a dead cat to deal with.

Send your ideas, requests, speculations and whinges to:

Paul Bristow,


or: 89 Wedgewood Drive, Harlow, Essex, CM17 9PY.

or call: (01279) 315653

Paul -- Programming


Con t-shirts are already available featuring the same logo as on PR1. They are black with white logo and lettering and cost £10. Sizes are M, L, XL. For any other colours or sizes please contact Keris at the Con address.

The Guests of Honour

UK Guest -- Simon Fairbourn

Simon Fairbourn started making music at a young age singing harmonies with his mother, usually in Db on account of that being the pitch of the Hoover. After a few false starts he finally took up the Bassoon. At the Waltham Forest Music Centre he perfected his famous one-legged solo performing style.

Simon also attended an all-girls' school for special tuition and extra-curricular activities with the senior staff (all five lines!) with whom he was on first-name terms. He remembers fondly greeting the headmistress and watching her pounce on other boys entering in his wake.

Whilst taking a music Degree, he formed the Athletic School of Bassoon Playing, where he would extol the virtues of expelling a complete lungful of air per note in the loud bits. He also played with lots of techie toys culminating in recording discarded extracts from Mahler's 8th, the symphony of a thousand (and there really were that many).

After failing to find work in the music business, he took on the challenging world of accountancy and gave up music altogether. It didn't last. After some personal changes, we now find our hero progressing through the amateur orchestras of London, reaching a pinnacle as principal bassoon with the Covent Garden Chamber Orchestra.

Within the Filk community is often seen as a member and conductor of the NMC, where he has been known to beat time so hard he broke one baton and embedded another in Valerie Housden's ceiling.

After marrying Talis Kimberley, Simon became one of her 'Mythical Beasts', playing leads and reeds. In time he got used to playing without the reassuring comfort of sheet music. The recording bug returned too, engineering and co-producing Talis's Archetype Cafe and working on the NMC's Voices Going West.

US Guest -- Teri Wachowiak

Teri was a born a military brat and got to 4 continents before her Da' quit travelling. She is delighted to be our guest as she wants to come “home to England!”. Her first real memories were British and her accent was so pronounced when the family moved to South Carolina that her mother was asked if she was adopted. Not content with that, she kept travelling the realms of the written word to much more than Terra Firma and hasn't stopped since.

A self taught guitarist, she found filk and a reason to pick up said guitar with the first hearing of Leslie Fish's Cold Iron. She has been hooked ever since. Teri tends to like the fantasy aspects more so than the hard science but does plead to being an old Trekker." She writes most of her material with a musical partner called Barbara Bowen, who she refers to as “my song editor, roadie, wordsmith [and] friend”. She now lives in Augusta, Georgia and attends housefilks in Atlanta, while preferring to get her news coverage from the good ole BBC.


In order to attend the convention you must be a member. The current membership rates are:

UK members £25 for full membership, £12.50 for unwaged, supporting, children aged between 5 and 16, £1 for children under 5 and large soft toys.

US members $40 for full membership, $20 for unwaged, supporting, children aged between 5 and 16, $2.50 for children under 5 and large soft toys.

Any other currency Please contact a member of the committee.

Contact details

Write to us at: Quinze Filkcon 15, 155 Long Meadow, Aylesbury, Bucks. HP21 7EB England

Email us at

Phone us on 01296 331055 or 44 1296 331055 from outside the UK

Web site

US Contact Dave Weingart, 17 Chapin Road, Farmingdale, NY 11735