The Fretful Federation: Home


We are looking forward to a visit from our friends in the orchestra from Dudenhofen, Germany in July. Come and see them at St George's Church Kemptown on July 28th.





Hello and welcome to the Fretful Federation's website. Find here information about who we are, current and past events, resources and how to contact us.

Brighton's very own mandolin orchestra currently has 25 players from Brighton and the surrounding areas. The group was founded in 1995 by Ian Harris with the goal of reviving the tradition of mandolin orchestras, which were hugely popular in the UK up until the 1930s. In April 2012 Ian passed the Musical Director baton to Lindsay Stoner.

Originally playing pieces typical of mandolin orchestras from the beginning of the twentieth century, the Fretful Federation has always been expanding and developing its repertoire. We now play a wide range of material including exciting contemporary music by living composers, as well as classical and popular pieces and concertos, and have collaborated with other mandolin orchestras, choirs and the Early Music group The Pastores Ensemble.

The music is written in part form for mandolins, mandolas, mandocellos, mandobass, percussion and guitars. We welcome new recruits playing any of these instruments or their relative bowed cousins -- the violin family -- from beginners to advanced players. We perform concerts all over Sussex and have toured abroad.

Listen to some of our new live recordings here on SoundCloud

Check out our Facebook page


Upcoming concerts


Jul 12 Sunday
All Saints Chapel, Darley Road Eastbourne BN20 7PE. 3:00pm

Tickets now available here :-

An eclectic mix of classical music and arrangements featuring guest soloist Katherine Rogers on flute.
Lots of lovely new material mixed with some old favourites.

Jul 28 Tuesday
St George's Church, Kemptown,Brighton,East Sussex,BN2 1ED. 7:30pm

We have the pleasure of inviting the excellent German mandolin orchestra from Dudenhofen to join us in a joint concert.
They are visiting us in Brighton for a few days following our visit to play with them last year. Kathy Rogers (flute) will also join us to play "Balletto" by Kurt Schwaen.
This will be a great opportunity to hear a really large mandolin orchestra in Brighton when we combine forces.

See details of our visit to Germany elsewhere on this site.


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Sep 8 Tuesday
Florence House, Southdown Rd, Seaford, East Sussex BN25 4JS. 7:30pm

A return to Florence House.