We were so excited to finally be able to host our own AmaSing Youth Orchestra day at Chester Catholic High School on Sunday 12th September.
After cancelling this event 4 times due to the restrictions of the pandemic we finally brought together 30 young people from several local high schools to work alongside amazing professional musicians from Manchester based Kaleidoscope Orchestra and our own AmaSIng band musicians.
It was a chance for young people to come together and create and play our new music which has been composed by children and communities during the pandemic, led by our amazing Musical Directors Andy Smith and Alex Dee.
Musicians involved included Jack McCarthy and Alan Taylor leading Drums and percussion, Mark Harrison leading Brass, Polly Virr and Katie Foster leading Strings, Sally Minter and Kate Blackstone leading woodwind, Paul Adams and James Dee leading guitars and Andy Smith Keys and vocal.
During the day the orchestra worked on several of our unique pieces which we have created in projects and included songs “Not All Heroes Wear Capes which was written by key workers, families and children during the first lockdown and dedicated to The Countess of Chester Hospital.
Other songs they worked on were “Live my Life to the full” which was written for Macmillan Cancer support, “Be who you wanna be” which was written by children from 65 Cheshire primary schools celebrating difference and diversity and “This is the World” which was created by St Bernard’s School in one of our Spiderdome workshop days and “Sustainability” Chester Zoo new campaign song which was created by Ignite schools and Chester Zoo Staff in one of our online workshops during the pandemic and been sung by over 14000 children in our online Big Sing.
All of these songs have been sung by thousands of young people across the globe and in our online sessions and theatre shows. The day was such a success we are hoping to continue to meet every month and build up to playing at our AmaSing shows and accompany all the thousands of primary children who come to perform at them.
This Orchestra is open to all ages with grade 3 standard or above experience in playing an instrument.
We would like to say a special thank you to The Catholic High for letting us host the event in their amazing Emmaus building, William Hay W777 photography for capturing the day so brilliantly, Steve Pycroft Musical Director of Kaleidoscope and all the amazing Kaleidoscope musicians, Our fantastic musical director Andy Smith and AmaSing band, Music for Life ( one of our partner organisations) and Arts Council England for supporting the event and last but definitely not least all the amazing young people and their families who got involved and stunned us with their talent and enthusiasm.
It was an incredible day and Andy Smith and Rachael Borman ( Directors of AmaSing) both agreed how emotional they felt seeing everyone playing and performing together making music after such a long time. Rachael said “ I had a tear in my eye when they started playing “Not All Heroes wear capes” it was so wonderful to hear our unique music finally being played and it was a really special day which I hope will be the first of many to come.
If you would like to be involved in our next Orchestral session on Thursday November 18th at Queens Park High School please get in touch and email firstname.lastname@example.org