It certainly can't be said that it's a quite life being a musician. With so many varied things going on this week it's hard to remember which way is up!
Last weekend I had the pleasure of being involved with a GCSE/A Level composition residential course. The aim was to get the GCSE students to start and complete a piece for their coursework portfolio in the 3 days whilst giving the A Level students some focused time to work on their pieces as well. The Saturday was spent at Newcastle University, with two of their composition lectures who gave some great presentations and helped get the kids started thinking about different ways of writing. We then all headed off to a retreat where we grafted hard and laughed even harder. They were a great bunch of talented students to work with and by the end of the trip had all produced and impressive amount of work.
Tuesday saw me removing my teachers hat for a day whilst I started a placement as part of my Masters programme. I am working at a small arts company called Flo-Culture, based in Gateshead, as their Community engagement manager for a project called Found Sound. It is a Youth Music funded project that has seen them develop a toolkit and resources for Early Years teachers to use music and songs as a means to develop social and leadership skills in young children. Im excited to see how this project develops and it makes a nice change to standing in front of a class for a while.
Wednesday I was back in school but we also had a Not Now Charlie rehearsal. It was a productive couple of hours spent getting our drummer up to speed with one old chart as well as rehearsing the newest tracks and trying out a few new ideas.
Our regular Thursday night rehearsal with Strictly Smokin' Big Band had a latin flavour to it again as we continue to work on the charts for our latin set, complete with guest percussionist Paco. Looking forward to performing this for you soon.
Anyway, I think thats about it for this week. I'm off to play a wedding gig in York tonight, rehearse with Juggernaut Love Band on Sunday and then it'll be another week over. Roll on half term!