Opera project hits the right note

Published 23rd October 2017

“We have found that kids find opera fun in the way we present it, it makes them
want to do more music and take part in other projects. It's a real hands-on,
can-do experience - no one is made to feel they can't participate or that it is
beyond them in any way".

Tim Lole, VoiceChoice

On 20th October, Kirkby College were visited by NottsTV who were keen to see the results of our VoiceChoice led project 'Transition Through Opera'.

Since last summer term, twenty year 6 pupils from Abbey Hill and Morven Park primary schools in Ashfield have started on a musical journey with innovative Nottingham opera company VoiceChoice. Each week pupils participated in workshops specifically designed enthuse and engage children in taking part in music. 

As these pupils prepared to transition from Primary to Secondary phase, over at Kirkby College 10 current year 9 performing arts students  were gearing up to help support and mentor the new arrivals...and learn new skills along the way.

This term, the (now) year 7s and their (now) year 10 mentors have worked together, exploring and developing their skills as performers, singers and song-writers.  Having worked alongside professional musicians, and discovered new ways of being creative, of reflecting and expressing themselves, each participant also achieved their Discover Arts Award , thanks to a little extra funding support by The Mighty Creatives.

From the college's perspective, the impact of the weekly workshops and the performance on their pupils was considerable. Their delighted lead teacher has commented that "many of them have been amazing in class since the beginning of term", with  one boy, previously a non  singer suddenly performing "an amazing boy soprano solo with confidence", another boy "giving it his all and even conducting amazingly" and also noting a child "who has been so quiet in class stepping up his game and performing with such energy".

Many thanks to the great artistic team at VoiceChoice, to The Mighty Creatives,  Saree Wilson and NottsTV, who sent a journalist to capture the story on film. See it here: Transition Through Opera on NottsTV link

"I feel sure that what they have done with you has had an impact...I'm just overwhelmed with what they achieved...everyone who took part will have [the performance] as a wonderful memory that they can feel pride in and that I can call upto to give them a sense of what they can achieve when they put their mind to it"

Mr Beighton, class teacher, Kirkby College

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