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Play with us

We are always interested in hearing from people who might like to play with us. Even if there isn’t a vacancy straight away, it’s very useful to know of potential players so that if a regular player leaves, or is unavailable, we can make contact. We generally look for players of Grade 8 standard or higher, and we audition.

As usual with orchestras, we are particularly keen to hear from string players. Players of all ages join us, occasionally schoolchildren, and quite often students. People come from quite far afield, for example we have regular players who travel from Manchester, Sedbergh and Settle.

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We have three concerts a year, in November, February and June, and occasional other playing events with limited rehearsals. Rehearsals are on Mondays from 7:30 pm to 9:45 pm, for 5 weeks before each concert. In addition we rehearse on the evening preceding concert day, (normally with the soloist) and in the afternoon of concert day. The rehearsal venue is in Lancaster, usually at the University of Lancaster. We like players to attend all rehearsals, for obvious reasons. Music, and bowings for string players, are provided prior to the first rehearsal.


Playing with us is free for children and students, and there is a modest annual subscription for others. There are currently around 60 members.


People say that we are a friendly and well organised outfit. We have occasional social get-togethers for players and their families, which in the past have included mountain walks, weekends away, meals, a variety of celebration parties, and fund-raising events.

Contact the Secretary, Ruth Hutchison:  
Tel. 01524 32485     4,Fairfield Close

Lancaster LA1 5NT

Some comments made recently by our members, when asked “What do you like about playing with the Haffner?”

“Playing with a group of top notch gifted and committed musicians to a high standard of performance on the basis of a manageable number of rehearsals beforehand. A large audience base is excellent motivation to keep performances to this high standard.”


“I enjoy the challenging repertoire, working through sections to improve them and then feeling like you've learned something by the time the concert comes around.”


“The sense of community is really nice - everyone is very friendly and it's a really nice way to spend your Monday evenings!”

“Good challenging orchestral music to tackle; sense of achievement when we find we can perform difficult works; having a professional approach to music making; sense of camaraderie, socialising, as well as playing with good friends; the inclusion of families and supporters; good and appreciative audiences."

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