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Half a century after the Tetbury Station closed, and twenty years after regeneration efforts began, Tetbury Goods Shed is back in business!  We are Goods Shed Arts, with an ambitious vision to make the Shed into a regional centre of arts excellence as well as a place where everyone can have a good time.

On these pages you can find out what’s coming up, buy tickets and sign up for our monthly newsletter. Eventually there will be tons more content here but for the moment please bear with us while this entirely volunteer-run operation gets through its ‘little acorn’ phase.

We’re recruiting!

Would you like to work at the Goods Shed? We’re looking for two experienced Arts personnel to take this exciting project forward. Visit the ‘Get Involved’ page for full details!

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Featured Event

Stop by the Whistle Stop this weekend

This Saturday, 15 July, The Whistle Stop Cafe's Launch Party runs from 12 noon to 2pm and everyone's invited! Performer Jason Maverick will provide a high-energy street-style children's show inside the Shed starting at noon (just £5 per child)

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We’re looking for talented individuals

Do you have skills and talents, especially in project management, human resources or fundraising, that you would like to put to good use?

The Tetbury Rail Lands Regeneration Trust is actively seeking additional talents to add to the skills set available to the board and perhaps you can help?

The Trust is run by a group of trustees, eight at present, with the overarching aim of developing the Goods Shed and the GWR rail bed. To date the Trust has successfully overseen the transformation of the old railway line into a leafy park well used by walkers and families and more recently the launch of the Tetbury Goods Shed Arts Centre – but there remain projects to complete.

If you are interested in contributing to this exciting project please contact us on recruitment@shed-arts.co.uk.

The artist and his instrument – a tale of two pianos

With a superb Steinway D concert grand piano arriving at Shed Arts this week, we talk to Tetbury-based pianist composer Jan Vriend about the interplay between artist and instrument

By Brecon Quaddy, Shed Arts volunteer

Many years ago, I visited Yamaha’s piano factory at Hamamatsu, Japan. Not, sadly, the one the grand pianos come from but its cousin down the road, where standard ‘everyman’ Japanese household upright pianos are mass-produced.

After watching for a while as part-built pianos scurried around the works on robot trucks, we walked out on to the quay beside the factory. There, baulks of exotic hardwood slumbered in a water-filled dock in the spring sunshine. We were told that these were not destined for the workshop behind us. These timbers would mature – perhaps for years – until they were perfectly ripe for selection as raw material for one of Yamaha’s top concert instruments.

The contrast between the din inside the upright factory and the serenity of the timber dock made us feel we were looking down into a hatchery for future mythical beasts.

But what about the far-subtler contrast between different makes and types of concert instrument?

We asked the Shed’s very own ‘mythical beast’, Jan Vriend, who has been responsible for attracting performers of the calibre of James and Joy Lisney, and Tony Hymas to the Cotswolds’ newest performance venue, how his own Yamaha C3 differs from a Steinway D.

“I love my Yamaha,” he says, adding that it was the best instrument he could afford at the time (almost 10 years ago) to replace a baby Förster he had worn out.

“But the C3 is a rather brash instrument and its action requires very auspicious control, especially the quieter you want to play. When I played at the Shed on 13 April, although it was perfectly capable to fill the space of the hall, its sound was very different from the concert grand.”

Jan Vriend playing Chopin’s Nocturne in C minor, Opus 48 No. 1 at the Goods Shed on 13 April 2017
(Watch on YouTube)

Jan explains that the concert grand has much longer strings from the bottom up and therefore creates more resonance throughout the soundbox of the piano, which is much bigger as well, of course.

“Resonance is not only increased by the size but in particular by the extra harmonics that are activated in the lower strings. This quickly becomes rather technical but, in essence, both the size of the piano’s interior and the extra length of the overall strings provide extra resonance.”

Although the size of the piano doesn’t affect its loudness, he says, it does affect the distance the sound travels in a space. That’s why big concert halls need a piano like the Steinway.

“Besides, the action (or mechanism) of the Steinway is much more delicate, allowing for a high level of tone control from the keys. It’s this subtlety of touch that controls the movement of the hammers against the strings in order to produce a range of tone colours; not only from quiet to loud, but from delicate to rough.

“Now, no two Steinways are the same because they are hand made and depend on a great number of variables in the enormous complexity of the mechanism. But generally Steinway’s reputation is based on its high level of precision and attention to detail, years of expertise and durability of all its parts and materials,” Jan concludes.

Those wishing to experience the dynamics of a Steinway in the hands of a master musician at Tetbury’s Arts Centre only need wait until Saturday 24 June, when James Lisney (below) performs a programme featuring Schubert, Grieg and Chopin at 7.30pm.

For more information about the recital and to be sure of obtaining tickets, visit the event page on the Shed’s website. Tickets are also available at Tetbury Tourist Information Centre and there may be some still available on the door on the night.

Thank you, Jan, for taking the time to talk to us. The Steinway D has been kindly loaned to the Shed by Coach House Pianos of Swansea.

Open air kids’ theatre this weekend

What better way to while away an hour on a  beautiful summer’s late afternoon with young family members than joining watching a charming children’s play in the Rail Lands Park?

With the weekend weather outlook looking really, really good, we’re moving our delightful children’s show, Much Ado About Puffin, outdoors on Saturday.

Get close to the action on the lawn or stay cool in the shade of the marquee over the former cattle dock next to the Shed. We’ll have ice creams and soft drinks a-plenty available to keep everyone refreshed during the hour-long show.

You can buy tickets for the show here at just £3 for youngsters and £6 for grown-ups! Or come along on the day and buy at the gate.

Suitable for children aged from four upwards, Much Ado About Puffin is packed full of skilful puppetry, beautiful music, and good old fashioned storytelling. Come along and join Open Attic Company as they traverse stormy seas and reckless tides in this funny tale about a man all alone, a friendly puffin, and a whole lot of fuss over nothing.