Shetland Schools Music Festival 2012
March 29, 2012
The Shetland Schools Music Festival 2012 has been hailed a great success by everyone involved - including audiences of parents, families and the general Shetland public into the bargain.
Over 1000 young Shetland musicians, singers etc (the overwhelming majority of primary age) from 27 local schools took part during the four-day annual event with over 250 different musical performances in 34 different musical classes taking place during the period. Performances ranged from solo slots to 50 piece choirs - and everything in between!!!
The annual schools music festival focuses on primary perfomers one year, with secondary age musicians performing on alternate years. Music development workshops also form a major element of the festival and again these alternate between primary and secondary participants. This year these workshops, which took on an 'Olympics' theme, were delivered by tutors from the National Youth Choir of Scotland (NYCoS) and were funded by Creative Scotland's 'Youth Music Initiative'.
Although the festival is officially non-competative in terms of general structure (the over-arching emphasis being on providing performance experience for the young musicians) a highly experienced music adjudicator never-the-less provides an overview of, and constructive feedback on, each individual performance. This year the adjudicator was Mr Neil Morris - who last summer retired after 27 years as woodwind instructor in Shetland Schools.
The adjudicator also awards a gold, silver or bronze accreditation for each performance and also a trophy for an outstanding performance in each class. This year there were no less than 83 'gold performances' from a total of just over 250. A list of those who won trophies in each class is included below.
The festival also incorporates the coveted Junior and Senior 'Young Musician of the Year' competitions. This years' junior winner was Pryde McGinlay (double bass) from Sandwick Junior High School, while the winner of the senior competiton was Sarah Keay (cello) again from Sandwick Junior High School.
The whole event is rounded off by a large Gala Concert on the final evening featuring festival highlights and incorporating just some of the young performers who took part during the previous four days - a "celebration of the festival and music in general" as one person put it.
Noelle Henderson - Creative Links Officer with Shetland Islands Council - said "It is impossible not to smile and cry - sometimes both at the same time - at the Schools Music Festival. We have such fantastic bairns doing amazing things along with their instrumental instructors, music and classroom teachers. It is and inspirational event that really has to be experienced.
Davie Gardner of 'Atlantic Edge Music Services' - who co-ordinated the festival again this year - said "The Shetland Schools Music Festival is a wonderful and somewhat unique event which affords many of our young musicians their first real taste of formal live performance and of course the production techniques and overall atmosphere that goes hand-in-hand with that. It also allows them to gain in experience and confidence and to benefit from some expert advice on how their performances went on the day and how they might improve still further for the future".
Davie added that the festival was also a great opportunity for parents and families of the young musicians involved to see them play live in public and also for the general public to witness first-hand what was being achieved in the school environment and what Shetland was getting for its continued invenstment in musical education.
The Shetland Schools Music Festival is organised by a small voluntary Steering Committee made up of representative of SIC Childrens Services, Head-teachers and school music / instrumental staff.
The trophy winners for 2012 were -
String Solo - Pryde McGinlay - Sandwick Junior High School (Henderson Cup)
String Duet - Sophie Spasova and Alana Smith -Sandwick Junior High and Whiteness Primary School (String Duet Cup)
Solo Guitar - David Mainland - Dunrossness Primary (Atlantic Edge Music Shield for Guitar Solo)
Guitar Duet - Scott Tomlinson and Michael Waterhouse - Bells Brae (Atlantic Edge Music Shield for duet)
Vocal Duet - Hermoine Boyes and Flora Quinnell - Skeld Primary School (Vocal Duet Shield)
Vocal Solo - Holly Mouat - Tingwall Primary School (Vocal Solo Cup)
Woodwind Solo - Keira Munro - Dunrossness Primary (Woodwind Solo Cup)
Woodwind Duet - Keira Munro / Rosie Richardson - Dunrossness Primary (Woodwind Duet Trophy)
Primary School Choirs (1-3 teacher schools) - Lunnasting Primary School (Primary Choir Torphy Small Schools)
Primary School Choirs (4+ teacher schools) - Bells Brae Primary Choir (Primary Choir Trophy)
Primary Classroom Groups (1-3 teacher schools) - Primary 6/7 Aith Junior High School (Primary Classroom Groups Trohpy 1-3 Teacher Schools)
Primary Classroom Groups - (4+ teacher schools) - Primary 6/7 Dunrossness Primary School (Primary Classroom Groups Trophy 4+ Teacher Schools)
Dialect Song - Skeld Primary School (Shetland For-wirds Certificate )
Large Groups - Interschools Primary Brass Ensemble (Aith, Scalloway, Sandwick, Whiteness, Bells Brae, Sound and Dunrossness) (Primary Instrumental Ensemble Trophy)
Accordion Solo - Scott Johnson - Whalsay School (Accordion Solo Shield)
Small Groups - Dunrossness Wind Band - Dunrossness Primary School (Chamber Ensemble Trohpy)
Traditional Groups - Cunningsburgh Fiddlers - Cunningsburgh Primary School and Sandwick Junior High School (High Level Music Trophy)
Piano Solo (Class 1) - Finley Armstrong - Dunrossness Primary (KayTrophy)
Piano Class 2 - Matthew Johnson - Brae High School (Roesound Trophy)
Piano Class 3 - Keira Munro - Dunrossness Primary (Primary Piano Solo Trophy)
Piano Duet - Ellie Inkster / Lily Manson-Brodie - Cunningsburgh School (Junior Piano Duet Shield)
Brass Solo -Erraid Davies - Sandwick Junior High School (Brass Solo Cup)
Junior Young Musician of the Year - Pryde McGinlay - Sandwick Junior High School (Alliance and Leicester Cup – Junior )
Senior Young Musician of the Year - Sarah Keay - Sandwick Junior High School (Alliance and Leicester Cup - Senior)
Notable Contribution from a School - Dunrossness Primary (Schools Shield)
Outstanding Individual / Group - Bells Brae Primary Choir (Festival Cup)