This site uses cookies. close ×
+

Category : Uncategorized

Hackney Music Service: Music Tutor Spotlight….Uchenna Ngwe

This month we are kicking off a new feature shining a light on our dedicated team of music tutors working across Hackney both in schools and our collaborative projects. This month we begin with Uchenna Ngwe who began her work in Hackney 12 years ago as a classroom music teacher, and now works across a range of HMS projects and ensembles.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How did you come to choose the instrument(s) you play or did it/they choose you?

I was on the waiting list for piano lessons at school; I choose something else to play while I waited. I’d played the violin for a bit but didn’t get on with it, so I ended up choosing the oboe from a book, after reading it was the one that played the theme tune to Emmerdale Farm!

What do you enjoy most about playing your instrument(s)?

Lots of opportunities for solos! It’s great not having to play the same part as everyone else. As well as working together in a section, you also get a lot more autonomy within the solo sections in the music you play. The oboe has a wider range of music than most people expect from the instrument, which is important to demonstrate.

What do you find most challenging about playing your instrument?

One of the most challenging things is having to know so much about reeds and how to make them! Even if you don’t play on your own reeds, you still need to know how to make them so they’re playable for you personally. They also break really easily! It’s part of knowing the instrument. Also, it surprised me how quickly your muscles feel tired after having a day off, taking a break, or holiday – it always takes a while to build the strength back up.

What do you enjoy most about teaching in Hackney?

I first came to hackney and HMS as a classroom music teacher about 12 years ago and it’s still a great place to work! Everyone is so friendly – students, teachers and everyone in the Music Service office. Outside of the classroom, I work across a range of HMS projects – I work regularly with our Classical Meets Jazz ensemble, and Hackney Borough Youth Orchestra and sometimes with the Hackney Training Orchestra. It’s fantastic to work with such a diverse and talented range of young people from across Hackney.

What’s your all-time favourite gig? (either played in or been to)

My favourite gig that I’ve been to was seeing Stevie Wonder at British Summer Time in Hyde Park a few years ago. It was a great place to see one of my favourite artists. As the gig was in a park rather than a gig venue, everyone had space to dance and enjoy his music.

What kind of music do you listen to most? 

No idea how to answer this question! I listen to loads of different styles of music for work and for fun. I’m at home doing admin and practising today so my Spotify list has included Todrick Hall, James Blake, Stevie Wonder, Julia Holter, Anderson.Paak and the whole of Mozart’s The Magic Flute. I often listen to different things according to what I’m doing at the time. If I’m working or studying at home, I can’t listen to anything with words. But if I’m doing my accounts anything this fine!

What advice would you give to a student on developing their playing?

Practice! I know every teacher will probably say this but it’s important to know how to practice as well. Playing through your pieces loads of times the night before your lesson doesn’t count. It’s really important to focus on the most challenging bits and work on them slowly.


More about Uchenna:

Outside of HMS, Uchenna has been working on an incredibly varied range of projects, both as a performer and educator. As part of her current PhD research, Uchenna has established plainsightSOUND, a research project exploring the participation and contributions of people of Black British, African and Caribbean heritage in British classical music before the mid-20th century. In addition, she also runs the Decus Ensemble, a flexible and diverse group of professional classical musicians who work together to promote the works of less well-known composers throughout classical music history, for a range of instruments. You can also watch Uchenna’s 2016 TedX talk, Labels and pigeonholes: how to avoid peoples limiting expectations here.

 

Share : facebooktwittergoogle plus

Hackney Music Education Conference 2019

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hackney Music Service will be holding its annual music education conference on Friday 13th September 2019 at the Tomlinson Centre. This exciting day-long event will focus on Embedding Inclusive Practice in music education.  The day will include keynote speakers, practical music-making and workshops, presentations from project partners and Hackney headteachers and music leads, panel discussions and networking opportunities. 

 

Speakers and contributors include:

  • Dr Phil Mullen: Key Note Speaker – in this session Phil will discuss what inclusion is, how important it is for developing a non-discriminatory society, and will provide a number of practical insights for making your work more inclusive. He will focus on key ideas in inclusive education, who children in challenging circumstances are and how we can help them be more included, having an emotionally intelligent approach and the importance of reflecting on our practice. He will also look at a number of practical strategies to make the school classroom or music workshop a more inclusive place.  Phil will also deliver a Creative Music Making Workshop during the day. 
  • Sarah Bailey: Hackney Head Teacher at Queensbridge Primary School and OFSTED Inspector – What ‘inclusion’ means in a diverse school community; Wellbeing; Why music is so important and why (despite budget cuts) Queensbridge have ring-fenced and fundraised to keep music a priority; Implications for Music and the Arts under the New OFSTED framework.

 

  • Mark Malcom & Liz Jones: School Principal and Head of Music at The City Academy, Hackney – Excellent Practice in the Secondary Sector: ensuring that all pupils receive and access a broad and balanced curriculum offer in music and beyond; the positive impact of music and the arts on the whole school.

 

  • Professor Graham Welch (UCL Institute of Education) & Ann Wright Education Director (VCM Foundation) – Year 1 Vocal Research Project.

 

  • HMDT Music – Music Treehouse SEND Project

 

  • A New Direction: Artsmark – information about the Artsmark process, how Artsmark can positively impact your school and can be used as a tool to support school improvement

 

  • Bad Laydee: Words NOT Weapons – Bad Lay-Dee’s ‘Words NOT Weapons’ music and poetry workshops have been designed to inspire children and young people, particularly from disadvantaged backgrounds to develop confidence, self-esteem and communication skills through creative writing and performance. Since launching the workshops in October 2018, she has taught nearly 2,500 children with 100% positive feedback. Through practical exercises and discussions, this one-hour session will explore some of the techniques used in Bad Lay-Dee’s Music Workshops and how we can work together as music practitioners to develop new approaches that help make a difference to young people’s lives.

 

  • Kate Shortt: BSL Sign Language Vocal Workshop
  • Vahan Salorian: Whole Class Ukulele Workshop
  • Dorico Software: Music Technology Workshop

  

How to book your place? 

The conference is targeted at headteachers, subject leaders of music and the arts in both primary and secondary settings, all general class teachers involved in delivering the music curriculum, teachers from SEND settings, school governors, instrumental tutors, and network partners. Essentially, anyone who has an interest in music education and education in Hackney. Please note priority places will be given to Hackney delegates.

The conference is free of charge to attend, but you must register! To book your place, visit our Eventbrite page hereFor further information please contact Xanthe Sarr at Hackney Music Service on 0203 076 1535, or by email at xanthe.sarr@learningtrust.co.uk

Share : facebooktwittergoogle plus

Classical Road Show Battle of Trafalgar Concert – 16th March 2020

 

An invitation for primary schools to book their spaces now! Participatory Concert for children aged 7-11 years retelling the story of The Battle of Trafalgar

The Battle of Trafalgar is an exciting musical re-enactment of this famous sea battle, featuring the ship’s band (the RPO), Admiral Nelson (David Leonard), ship’s crew (a troupe of dancers) and audience songs for all as the crew of HMS Royal Sovereign. Teresa Collard’s script and lyrics, scrupulously researched for authentic details, excitingly re-creates the events leading to the historic battle, culminating in Nelson’s death and funeral procession.

Classes and choirs from primary schools (7-11 years) to perform alongside:-

The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

Conductor – Benjamin Pope

Narrator – David Leonard as Admiral Nelson

Date: 16th March 2020 Concerts at 11.15am and 1.30pm (concerts last 1 hour)

Location: Cadogan Hall, Sloane Terrace, Belgravia, London, SW1X 9DQ

How to Book: Booking forms available from Classical road Show website here

For more information email: concerts@classicalroadshow.org

Tickets cost: £5 each for children and adults (Hardship fund available to support pupils with financial difficulty)

Classical Road Show provides all the teaching materials for the audience songs to be taught in schools by music specialists or class teachers. Music specially commissioned for performance by primary school children alongside a professional orchestra and an actor. We encourage everyone to dress up as sailors to add to the musical-theatre experience. Everyone in the concert hall takes part throughout the whole performance.

 

 

Share : facebooktwittergoogle plus

Online Training Courses for Primary, Secondary & Instrumental Music Teachers

 

 

 

 

 

 

Music Education Solutions has recently expanded its range of online courses for primary, secondary, and instrumental music teachers. Whether you’re looking for planning inspiration, help with the national curriculum, behaviour management tips, or want to develop your understanding around the theory of musical learning, there is something for everyone!

Each course costs £99, is valid for 6 months, and comes with a certificate on completion.

To find out more, visit the Music Education Solutions website. 

Share : facebooktwittergoogle plus

Hackney Scholar of the Month: Shania

This month, we continue with our new feature, Hackney Scholar of the Month, shining a light on some of the amazingly talented young musicians in Hackney. This month we continue with Shania – read her feature and interview below….

Shania first came to HMS’s attention when she joined the Hackney Borough Youth Choir when she was in Year 4.  She was a fantastic singer, and was also we discovered making really good progress as a recorder player in her classroom music lessons at primary school.  She had also started to learn the violin, and by the time she reached Year 6 and was getting ready to move to secondary school, still singing, playing the recorder and also the violin, she was showing all the signs of being a really talented young musician.  She already had a really good basis for learning to play a wind instrument with all her singing and recorder experience, so she tried the oboe out and, as you will see from her interview, the rest is history!

 

(Photo of Shania featured on the front of the ABRSM’s ‘Libretto’ magazine, taken during her time as a London Music Fund scholar)

 

What made you decide to play your instrument?

When I was initially presented with the opportunity to play the oboe by Hackney Music Service, I must admit that I didn’t actually know what it was as I had quite a limited knowledge of music at the time. I had been playing the violin for a few years and although I really enjoyed it, I was excited to try something new. I had a “taster” lesson on the oboe and enjoyed it immensely which prompted me to make the decision to start learning it.

What do you love most about it?

I love the fact that the oboe is quite a rare instrument and it is fun to play. It is always a joy to meet other oboists as well.

How often do you practice?

My practise times vary as I am usually very busy, but on average, I practise about 4-5 hours a week.

Do you play in any ensembles – orchestras, bands, in or out of school, or with HMS?

Yes, I play with the Hackney Borough Youth Orchestra and I am in the senior school band at my school.

What has been your most exciting musical experience so far? (any particular performances that you have taken part in that really stand out, or a particular music lesson that really changed things for you)

My most exciting musical experience so far has been the London Symphony Orchestra concert at Trafalgar Square last year. It was a lot of fun to meet other musicians (and oboists) it was also very exciting to play the music with the composer (Kate Whitley) so nearby and invested in the deliverance of the piece. However, I think that my first performance at the Hackney Music Service Gala at the Hackney Empire is what really encouraged me to invest my time in studying music.

What musician would you most like to meet or perform with?

I would love to meet John Clayton.

If you could travel anywhere in the world to listen to / learn more music or even travel back in time to a different musical era, where would you go and why? 

I would travel to New Orleans between 1920-1950’s when Jazz was most popular. Personally, I think that Jazz represents cultural diversity and hope. Despite the stigma surrounding people of colour and the problems happening in the rest of the south during this time period, Jazz continued to develop and change the expectations of what music “has” to be like and who can play it.

How does being a musician / performing music make you feel?

Whenever I finish learning a new piece or whenever I play something well, I feel a sense of accomplishment. With music, you can hear that all of your practice and extra hours are paying off.  When I think back to when I had first started my instrument, and think of the progress that I have made, I feel like I have really achieved something. Music is one of the most liberating forms of expression and it is always interesting to learn about the way that music ties in with the historical context that we are taught at school.

Any words of advice to someone just starting out on their instrument now?

I would advise the person just starting out on their instrument to get involved with as many ensembles and group performances as possible. It is a great opportunity to meet likeminded people, make lasting friendships and learn more about other instruments. I would definitely encourage the individual to continue with their instrument for as long as possible. Music opens so many doorways and it is never boring because there are so many styles, genres and interpretations. Music is freedom, and although it takes a while to master your instrument, it is most definitely worth it.

 

More about Shania’s story...

After making a cracking start with her oboe playing Shania was originally awarded a scholarship from the Mayor of London (now known as the London Music Fund).  She was also given the chance to put her singing to good use during her time as a Mayor’s Scholar as she was invited to Southwark Cathedral to sing a solo for the Mayor’s Carol Service, which she did absolutely beautifully.  Once graduated from the Mayor of London’s award, it was clear that Shania was fast becoming quite a serious player and was about to start her Music GCSE course.  She received further support, this time from the Mayor of Hackney, to continue with her lessons.  Now in the middle of her Music A Level course at a sixth form in a Hackney school, Shania is receiving some assistance from both the National Youth Arts Trust and also from the fantastic singer and songwriter Kwabs HMS is lucky to have a very special relationship with this extraordinarily talented, generous and resilient young man. Shania is one of a number of Hackney young musicians Kwabs has supported over the last few years.  As a result of this generosity from both Kwabs and the NYAT, Shania now has an oboe of her own and continued support with her oboe tuition this year.

 

 

Share : facebooktwittergoogle plus

LSO On Track: Music in the Classroom Programme

LSO On Track 10th Anniversary 05072018
Photo Copyright: Doug Peters
Photographer – Doug Peters
doug@dougpetersphoto.com
m.07778 358182

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LSO On Track brings you – Music in the Classroom is a year-long hands-on programme for Primary teachers and pupils in East London, regardless of musical or teaching experience. Primary school teachers and their pupils will have the opportunity to explore classical music in engaging new ways, develop musical skills, learn hands-on games and warm-ups, work collaboratively, and create and perform group compositions.

Music in the Classroom is open to Primary schools in East London (in the boroughs of Barking & Dagenham, Bexley, Greenwich, Hackney, Havering, Lewisham, Newham, Redbridge, Tower Hamlets, Waltham Forest) and is targeted at Key Stage 2 teachers and students. We are unable to offer places to independent schools.

Led by Rachel Leach, LSO Animateur, Julie Sharpe, Teacher trainer, London Symphony Orchestra musicians

For more information please contact Beth Kershaw, LSO On Track Projects Manager, on beth.kershaw@lso.co.uk or 020 7382 2538 or visit the LSO website here.

Share : facebooktwittergoogle plus

1 2 3 6