Next week every student at Great Oaks will take part in the whole school production of ‘Pirates in the Curry Bean’. As the school now has 178 students a decision was made to do a KS3 and a KS$/5 version of the show, therefore increasing the opportunities for as many students as possible, making the show truly inclusive and diverse. The technical crew will consist of year 10 students and even the co-director is a year 11 student who is working on his Silver Arts Award. Students have been working hard learning their lines, practising their reading, internalisation and memory skills. The KS3 show is on Tuesday 24 May and the KS4/5 show is on Thursday 26 May. Many students in the show can use their participation to contribute towards achieving an Arts Award. 9W are completing the Explore level; Year 10 Bronze level; and for the first time at Great Oaks, 6 students are working towards their Silver level.
After Easter 8W took part in a week long project ‘Dormez-vous’ with a French company of artists who had a week long residential at The Point Theatre in Eastleigh. Click on the link to find out more about this unique project, which focussed on the theme of ‘Insomnia’, portraying it through drama, music, art and dance. Dormez-vous
8W’s journey can be seen on the ‘Eastleigh’ page.
Over 50 students took part in Rock Challenge this year and performed on stage at Southampton Guildhall. You can watch their final performance by clicking on the link: Great Oaks Rock Challenge
Great Oaks students who are passionate about Theatre chose to give up their free time and attended 2 after school workshops led by The Mayflower Theatre youth theatre team and visit 2 shows at The Mayflower: ‘Impossible’ and ‘Cirque Beserk’. Some students reviewed the performances for their Silver Arts Award.
With the aim of creating more opportunities for young people with learning difficulties, The Mayflower Theatre are running a project, ‘Limelights’, in collaboration with Kellyjo Peters at Great Oaks School. The 9 week project begins on Wednesday 13 January 6.oopm-7.30pm and culminates in a final performance on 13th March. The theme for the project is magic and illusion. Students will be involved in the planning and technical aspects of the performance as well as acting and singing. William Pickering will be writing an original script and music to make the project really unique.
Applications for students to be involved in the project can be made directly through The Mayflower website.
So, the school term starts tomorrow and long-term planning is in place. Events have been added to the diary and the music department has a busy and exciting year to look forward to. iPads continue to play a fundamental role in the music progression of the students. During this term year 9 students will begin a topic on ‘Electronica’ and learn how to create music using high-end apps such as Korg Gadget, iKaoscillator, iElectribe, Glitchbreaks, Launchpad etc. Year 10 students will be learning Romeo and Juliet to perform for the Shakespeare Schools Festival at Winchester Theatre Royal. Last year one student performed live music and sound fx using an iPad at the theatre. The aim is now to have more iPads at the theatre and to have characters represented by Prokofiev themes.
A new project we are taking on at Great Oaks is the Friday Afternoons Project run by Aldeburgh Music. We are working with Aldeburgh Music to help prepare resources for people with SEND to widen the access of classical music. Students will learn to play some of the songs on iPads. There is the potential of having a residential at Snape Maltings next year and being able to perform on iPads at this prestigious music venue.
This year will be the first year of running the Silver Arts Award, after 30 students successfully completed the Bronze qualification in the summer. iPads will be used to record and evidence project work as students are familiar with apps such as book creator, Adobe voice and iMovie.
In the Spring, Great Oaks will host an SEND youth musical theatre group in conjunction with The Mayflower theatre with an aim to improving opportunities for young people with a passion or talent in the arts. The group will take on a 10 week project culminating in a final performance.
Great Oaks will be taking part in Rock Challenge again this year, as well as putting on a whole-school production of ‘Pirates of the Currybean’. Again another opportunity for students to work on producing music using iPads for a production.
The year will culminate in a Student Conference for young people with SEND. An ideal opportunity to offer iPad CPD to staff from schools around the country, and to give students from other schools an opportunity to develop music skills and perform using iPads.
Great Oaks is also planning to deliver iPad music training to adults as part of the newly formed Springwell Teaching Alliance.
So all in all, a busy year for students and staff, jam-packed with exciting opportunities and experiences in music education and with iPad music playing an important role in progression and skill development.
For video tutorials and performances of iPad ensembles follow iPad Music Teacher on Facebook.