Music events hit all the right notes!

It has been a busy half term for the school’s Music department, with a range of activities and performances having taken place over recent weeks. Below are some of the highlights:

Sarons, Gongs and Kenongs! Gamelan workshop inspires Year 7 creativity

On Thursday 26th April, a group of 30 Year 7 students were given the opportunity to perform music from a different culture as they took part in a Gamelan workshop at Withernsea’s Meridian Centre.

The workshop was designed to introduce students to the importance of Gamelan - an ensemble of percussive instruments which orchestrate the traditional music of Southeast Asia - within the Indonesian culture.

Students were able to try a range of instruments such as Sarons, Gongs and Kenongs and developed an improvised composition under the direction of professional percussionist Gary Hammond. 

The workshop was organised by June Mitchell, a Community Arts Officer for East Riding of Yorkshire Council, and delivered by Mr Hammond who, for over 15 years, was a touring member of The Beautiful South.

It is the second year in a row that students of the school have been invited to participate in the workshop, with Teacher of Music Rebecca Croombs hopeful that it will now become an annual event.

Mrs Croombs commented: ‘Once again our students have been lucky enough to work with a professional musician and experience the unique sound of the Gamelan.

While most children are familiar with traditional Western instrumentation, few are familiar with Eastern instruments.

The workshop allowed the students to open their ears to a whole new soundscape and explore music making in a completely new way, expertly led by Gary.

They did a fantastic job and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. I am really keen that this becomes an annual opportunity for future Year 7 students ’

ABOVE: Professional percussionist Gary Hammond working with Year 7 students during the Gamelan workshop.

Project 13: Sixth Form students impress with stunning showcase of talents

As part of the on-going work towards gaining their Level 3 BTEC Subsidiary Diploma in Music, the Year 13 music cohort recently planned, organised and staged a performance showcase for friends and family.

Held in the school’s Drama Studio on the evening of Thursday 10th May, the event saw the students take to the stage and perform a variety of pieces in order to complete their assessment.

The group also invited the Year 12 music group to join them in some ensemble numbers, to help build their confidence and prepare them for their own assessment next year. 

The students performed a selection of solos, duets, small group ensembles and larger choral numbers which covered a wide range of genres from country to musical theatre and pop to rock.

The evening was a huge success, with a packed audience of friends, family and staff members in attendance to support the students.

Over £70 was raised through donations and ticket sales from the event which will be donated to SSAFA (The Armed Forces Charity) which aims to support armed forces veterans who may require counselling, accommodation or re-training.
Mrs Croombs commented: ‘The Year 13 students have blown me away with their professionalism and the quality of the performances they delivered. I am so proud of the progress they have made, not only over the last two years, but in the four years they have all been studying music at a more advanced level.

I will sincerely miss them all, and wish them the best of luck for the future.

I am looking forward to seeing what our Year 12 group can produce next year based on the performances they delivered this year.’

In the audience was Acting Headteacher Mark Crofts who added: ‘Our Sixth Form students created a thoroughly engaging evening. They had chosen such a wide mix of musical styles that no one could have left thinking there wasn’t something that suited them.

As a good musical performance should, Project 13 had us all smiling along one moment and quite moved at others. I was so impressed by the quality of the performances: to hear how Year 13 have improved over the last year was tremendous and their confidence has really grown.

Year 12 have shown such promise – there’s clearly plenty for audiences to look forward to. The warm atmosphere between performers, parents and fellow students lent the evening a suitably relaxed feel. But in the audience we were all really impressed with the courage of the performers in putting themselves on the line in front of such an intimate crowd. 

Well done to Curtis, Milly, Zahra, Hannah Mowforth, Imogen, Morgan and Hannah Medcalf.’

ABOVE: Acting Headteacher Mark Crofts congratulates Year 12 and 13 students at the end of their showcase. 

Year 9 busking event hits the right notes

Following hot on the heels of the previous night’s Sixth Form showcase, the Year 9 music group staged their own unique event the following evening. 

Organised and planned by the students in preparation for beginning their BTEC qualification in September, the group worked hard to stage a busking event which saw various groups of instrumentalists and singers perform in different locations around the school.

Earlier in the term, the group held auditions for potential performers – inviting students from across all years of the school to participate. The Year 9 group were instrumental in overseeing this process and ensured there was a good mix of performers on the night.

On the evening itself, guests were invited to freely move around the building to discover performers in locations such as the Drama Studio, the Front Entrance and even in the corridors.

All students from the Year 9 group were involved in the evening in some way, whether that was performing, handing out programmes or managing the refreshments. They all worked together to ensure the evening was a great success.

Mrs Croombs commented: ‘I would like to congratulate our Year 9 music group for organising a fantastic event. The students represented themselves very well and managed the event in an extremely mature and professional way.

The performances were of an extremely high quality and showcased the talents of our students. I’d also like the opportunity to pass on my thanks to Diane Bosman for supporting the students with the selling of refreshments.’

Acting Deputy Headteacher Beci Pindar added: ‘It was a privilege to watch our Year 9 musicians perform at their Buskers evening.The organisation and performances were a credit to Mrs Croombs and the class as a whole. The students have made an excellent start to their BTEC course I look forward to watching their future performances.'