The Val-du-Seran is meant to be a centre where pre-formed groups or such which are formed for this purpose are accommodated and attend chamber music courses. Professional coaching is throughout provided.
At the time of registration a musical program is set up with the group leader or all group members. It is taken for granted that all group members carefully prepare the works to be played and that they use the same musical edition.
You want to come with your pre-formed group
You have a quartet, a quintet or a sextet and you would like to rehearse together during a week. You do not have to bother for anything, you'll get single accomodation, full board and best conditions for making music. Our house is fully dedicated to chamber music.
All equipment will be without restriction at your disposal as there is only one group in the house at a time. You decide yourself in how far and how much professional coaching your group should get.
As from now you can opt for a week in 2021 by e-mail. Is there a person / instrument missing in your group? Do not hesitate to contact us: we can possibly find somebody ready to help out. We know some musicians in "stand by" willing to join a group during a week.
Should you form a group for this purpose the ACMP self-grading guide could be useful. You’ll find it on the ACMP page.
Equipment, musical facilities
The centre "Val-du-Séran" aims to host chamber music groups that are looking for a rehearsal place in an inspiring atmosphere. There won't be any other guests apart from the chamber musicians and their friends or family. Everything is done to create the most stimulating atmosphere for the musicians.
The group in-house disposes of the rehearsal room ("Joseph Haydn") without any limit. More places to rehearse or to play can be found in the individual sleeping rooms (some are really large), on the southern balcony (sheltered from the wind) and in the large garden.
The rehearsal room is equipped with a grand (Pleyel, 2 m) and with a CD- and MD-player. During your stay, you can use our cello and/or double bass.
A chamber music library (works from the 18th to 21st century) is available for the musicians.
There is a recording studio combined with the room Joseph Haydn. Groups keen to undergo a recording session may get a CD with the result of their performance.
Week 22 May 23 to 30 - string quintet
This workshop had to be postponed until week 31 due to pandemia
(Beethoven, Mozart, Veit, Onslow)
Week 25 June 17 to 22
piano trio with a final concert
Week 29 July 11 to 18 - piano trio, piano quintet and string quartet
(Czerny, Dussek, Dvorak, Haydn, Onslow, Schubert)
Week 31 July 25 to August 1 -
Workshop initially due during week 22.
Week 35 August 22 to 29 - string quartet
Week 37 September 5 to 12
piano quartet plus oboe
In spite of travel and contact restrictions due to Covid-19 we were in a position to hold all booked courses in 2020. It is currently not possible to foresse what the situation will be in 2021. Nevertheless we want to publish the 2021 calendar in order to give our friends planning possibility and will only depart from it by act of god.
Week 19 May 8 to 15 (incl. Ascension Day) available
Week 21 May 22 to 29 (incl. Whitsun) available
Week 24 June 12 to 19 available
Week 27 July 3 to 10 booked
string quartet, string quintet
Week 29 July 17 to 25 - with a little final concert - booked
string quartet plus trombone
Week 31 July 31 to August 5 booked
Week 34 August 21 to 28 booked
Week 37 September 11 to 18 booked
string quartet - level B
The players of this group are looking for a 1st violin
Questions, registration, contact
Would you like to send us your registration
- or do you still have a question?
Please send your email to
or a letter to our post mail address:
1450 chemin de Préoux
The Val-du-Séran bedrooms are:
single bed 2.20m long, shower, WC
double room Duo-left and double-room Duo-right with common showerbath and WC
double room with shower and WC
with two single beds, shower and WC
(You are accommodated single, if you do not expressly register as a couple.)
Brahms, Grieg, and Onslow bedrooms have a direct access to the large balcony.
The Centre offers regional French cuisine with an international touch. Catering basis is full board.
Lunch is usually a light cold meal with salads, cold meat, cheese, and fruits. In the cold season, soup can be served.
Dinner is a three course menu with selected wines.
Any special diet will be taken care of as far as possible: please advise at least two weeks before your arrival !
The "Val-du-Séran" does not aim at profit making. The prices are fixed to cover the expenses.
In 2021 the daily rate amounts to € 77.- per person and includes individual accommodation, full board, coaching and use of all facilities.
This means that the participation fee in a normal week (Saturday dinner to breakfast the following Saturday) amounts to € 529.-
Accompanying persons can be accepted at the same conditions according to our accomodation capacities.
Picking you up in Geneva or Bellegarde: see Travel.
2 to 3 months before the course starts participants are requested to pay a deposit (30 % of the total rate through bank transfer). The balance is due during the course in cash.
The house "Val-du-Séran" belongs to the village of Ruffieu in the Northern part of the Valromey-valley, which belongs to the French departement AIN (01).
Visitors coming by train (SNCF) will have as destination station BELLEGARDE (also TGV). Please do not arrive after 6 pm. We can pick you up there by car and request 10 € to cover gasoline costs.
The nearest airport is Geneva. Please arrive by plane around noon or in the afternoon, not in the evening. We can pick you up at the airport and request 25 € to cover gasoline costs.
Guests coming by car will choose the exit n° 8 (Hauteville/St.Martin-du-Fresne) on the French highway A 40. After the tollhouse take the main road to your left on approx. 500 meters until the roundabout, then follow the D 31 to Chevillard - Brénod - Petit Abergement - Ruffieu.
As soon as you have reached the village Ruffieu (attention: not Ruffieux with x!) take the road D31 northwards in the direction of Petit-Abergement. After some 500 meters turn to your right (>> chemin de Préoux) and follow this way down the valley. After 1 mile you'll be arriving at Val-du-Séran.
46.010131 - 5.671350
Or 46° 0’ 36.472 - 5° 40’ 15.934
1450 chemin de Préoux
The house "Val-du-Séran" is located in the Northern part of the Valromey-Valley, through which the torrent Séran meanders. The next village is Ruffieu, about one mile away and the whole area is part of the departement AIN (01).
Most spectacular in this charming landscape are two impressive mountain crests (800–1500m) in the West and the East. In the South this valley extends itself into the Rhône Valley.
From December to March the climate is wintry with long periods of snow. During the summer, mediterranian warmth is dominating, subdued by the sea level of 700 m .
The surroundings of the centre are ideal for walking and hiking. We recommend you especially the two original pedestrian circuits "Les boucles des bacs et fontaines de Ruffieu" (historical fountains).
The free time installations of the centre (pool, boule, table tennis) are available for free.
The winegrowers of the Bugey, Seyssel, and Chautagne districts look forward to your visit.
Picturesque towns nearby the centre are Bellegarde, Seyssel and Belley on the Rhône.
You can hike up the Grand Colombier (1524 m) and other breathtaking mountains. Other attractive spots are the River Rhône nearby Seyssel, the small lake of Nantua as well as the large lakes (about 1 hour drive) of Annecy, Bourget, and Geneva.
Very awarding are trips to Bourg-en-Bresse (Église de Brou), Ambronay Abbey (nearby Ambérieux), Chambéry, Abbaye de Hautecombe (west bank of Lac du Bourget), Pérouges, Lyon.
The ACMP Self-Grading Guide
You are asked to determine your own self-rating within the five following groups. For a more precise rating you can add a Plus or Minus to your letter (e.g. A- or C+).
You play a repertoire chosen to be within your technical limitations. On a first reading, you usually aim to get through the music and end together without too many stops and starts in between.
You are in the process of exploring the standard repertoire, perhaps avoiding those works that are currently too technically challenging. You concentrate on not making major mistakes while reading an unfamiliar part, though you are aware of what the others are doing. You often slow down a fast movement for technical reasons.
You are quite familiar with portions of the standard repertoire (perhaps pieces from certain periods or for certain instrumental/vocal combinations). You generally sound good and sight-reading is not a problem. You usually pay attention to blend, balance, dynamics, and basic phrasing on a first reading.
You have extensive experience with and a strong command of the standard repertoire, from many time periods and for a variety of ensembles that include your instrument or voice. If your partners make a mistake, you can often bring them back in without stopping. You are a superior sight-reader and you consistently sound good (both in tune and at tempo). You already aim for cohesive musical expressiveness with attention to fine nuance on a first reading.
You regularly perform chamber music as a professional musician.