The Fretful Federation: Home






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.

2014 has been an exciting year for us so far. Check out the links above for more information about our visit to Germany and our successes at the Bristol BMG Rally.

Listen to some of our new live recordings here on SoundCloud

Check out our Facebook page

Latest news from the Banjo, Mandolin and Guitar Rally here :-



Upcoming concerts


Sep 9 Tuesday
St Leonard's Church, Church Street, Seaford, BN25 1HG. 7:30pm

A return to Seaford for us following the success of last year's Festival concert.
Our guest performer at this concert will be flautist, Katherine Rogers. (
The program will include Balletto by Kurt Schwaen for flute and plucked orchestra, Gabriel's Oboe and Symphony Number 1 by William Boyce.
Tickets priced £10 or £8 for concessions can be obtained from Seaford Tourist Information Centre 01323...

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Oct 10 Friday
Crowborough Community Centre, Pine Grove, TN6 1FE. 7:30pm

This will be our first visit to Crowborough and we will be joined by soprano, Maria Porter and flautist, Kathy Rogers. Come and listen to our exciting new program.

Tickets priced £10 or £8 for concessions can be obtained from Cross Country Stores, Crowborough, or on the door.