Down Your Way – Saturday’s Sess


(Photos taken by Dave Howard – Artistic Director & Lucy – participant aged 5)

Yesterday’s Open Access session – (basically a music workshop for members of the Castle Vale public to drop in and use sound bites to make music), was loads better. It helped restore my confidence after Thursday’s stompathon!

It went well – we did some names games as there were a few new faces, and then recorded some sounds bites about food we liked to eat in Castle Vale. Then we wrote a song about vegetables – no really! We wrote original lyrics about why they were good for you and described our favourite ones. All directed by the group.

Top veggies were:

1. Broccoli

2. Cauliflower

3. Sprouts

4. Sweet potato

5. Carrots

6. Cucumber

When I asked for feedback at the end – one participant said they liked being able to submit ideas and have them incorporated into the song. It made me smile loads!

I tried to be as laidback and open to suggestion as much as I could in this session, and it proved successful. This was also achievable because the group size was small – 7 and we had gelled quite nicely, I felt that there was a growing sense of trust and confidence. I’ve just been re-reading “Community Music: A Handbook” by Pete Moser and George McKay and I found myself pondering over their mention of the group as a complex animal – possessing a “character that is more than the sum of the individuals in it.”

What’s your (working) group like? If your group were an animal what would it be? I think we were an excitable puppy that was getting used to obeying instructions. Thursday’s music session was the Incredible Hulk – definitely!!



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  1. musicwork says:

    The Orchestra – highly-trained racehorse – bit nervy and neurotic, capable of brilliance, needs a lot of stroking.
    Lower Primary at Language School – meerkats, maybe? Lots of scurrying around, each one always engaged in a slightly different task. Their own version of cooperation that looks like chaos to someone outside it (ie. a teacher).
    Middle Primary – they are high-functioning teamworkers. Maybe they are like a team of working horses, or working dogs. Sheepdogs. Very clever, happy to do the right thing. Lots of fun still! Love to be rewarded.
    Upper Primary – Not sure. Independent thinkers. Up for a challenge. Get tired quickly (like teenagers). Can be brilliantly functional, or disengaged. Worth the effort always. Maybe they are like a team of monkeys? No. I have it. Donkeys (in that donkeys are way smarter than we give them credit for, are essential in keeping entire household economies going in some countries, and will let you know when they are getting shirty).
    MTeach students – cats, definitely. Constantly sussing you out. Highly competent… a little supercilious or clever-clever sometimes. Some could do with a dose of Humility, sometimes.

    Enjoying your posts!

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