Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Hope Arts Week

We've been working with five pupils from Hope School and two from Landgate (both in Wigan) since September last year. The sessions have been massively varied, as there is a wide range of needs and talent in our group. Aided by sensory pads, Midi-Creator sound beams and Ableton Live we have been able to identify each group member's musical capabilities. Sophie has responded enthusiastically to using sensory pads programmed through Ableton Live and is particularly fond of contributing flute and bass sounds to a musical accompaniment. John has shown an aptitude for rhythm and has been working on several drum patterns with Merlyn using word assoiciation exercises. Connor Wilson has also shown a good understanding of rhythm as well as a willingness to add vocals to our introductory theme, 'The Hello Song'. Connor Young has been working with sensory pads and sound beams, he has contributed to jam sessions and used our sound beam launch pad with great enjoyment. Robert's excellent pitch has been a real encouragement to Merlyn, Nathalie and I. Robert has been working on finding melodies on the keyboard, successfully playing 'Frere Jaque' and 'Teddy Bear's Picnic' with ease. Sean and Martin from Landgate school have been excellent throughout the course of the project. Martin has an obvious talent for singing but Sean has shown excellent talents on keyboard aswell as singing. Both Sean and Martin can effortlessly sing a song from start to finish in one take.
Collectively, last term we worked on a visual/audio piece based around a space launch and the David Bowie song 'Space Oddity'. Each student has a role to play in the journey of a space shuttle taking off, some musical and some visual - for example Sophie uses a sound beam with her wheelchair to provide the sound of shuttle taking off, Martin sings 'Space Oddity' and John Roper changes the lights to give the effect of the changing atmospheres.
We've planned a week by week schedule to ensure each student is able to achieve their maximum potential. We are now working towards a performance at Hope Arts Week in May. Each student will make a profile showcasing their talents to be shown to members of the school, teachers and parents. We are also hoping to include some live performances and maybe the collective 'Space Oddity' piece.