Whyteleafe School opened its doors to the young musicians of the locality the other week when it played host to the Tandridge Area orchestra day.
Young musicians from the region came together to perform in their individual orchestras, before combining to round off the day with a mass performance of two pieces they had all learnt on their own, the finale of Mozart’s Fourth Concerto and In the Hall of the Mountain King by Edvard Grieg.
“It was a wonderful day, not just for those pupils playing in the orchestra, but for the whole of Whytealeafe,” said teacher Emma Skipper, one of the organisers of the event.
“Music teachers from Surrey Arts took rehearsals all morning, and children out in the playground were fascinated by the noises coming out the windows from where the musicians were playing! We had all kinds of instruments being played on the day, so even for those who weren’t necessarily involved, just seeing them and finding out about them was a learning experience in itself.”
Whyteleafe is a member of the Surrey-based GLF Schools multi-academy trust, and music plays a prominent role in school life. Earlier this year the choir has performed at the Dorking and Fairfield Halls, all Year Five pupils have been learning the ukulele as part of their music lessons, and recently a school pupil who plays the harp performed and talked about the instrument to different year groups.
“In the afternoon session the musicians were divided into string and wind sections to learn separate pieces, before the day was rounded off with the massed performance in front of a room full of very proud parents,” said Mrs Skipper.
“They played superbly and it was a wonderful end to a thoroughly enjoyable day. Playing in an orchestra teaches children about so much more than just how to play an instrument – it gives them experience of working together in a group, and makes them realise the importance of practice to get better and achieve things. They put in so much hard work to make this day a success, and it was. We’re all extremely proud of them.”
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