Local primary school students to access all arias

Published: 07 March 2018

Students from local primary schools are being given the unique opportunity to create new 10-minute Snappy Operas with industry professionals.

Primary school students from Priory School, Lynch Hill Primary, Parlaunt Park Primary, St Ethelbert’s Catholic School and St Anthony’s Catholic Primary School are currently in rehearsals for their big performance later this month.

The Slough Music Service will be bringing a diverse range of performances to life at Beechwood High School on Monday 26 March at 6pm.

Each school is allocated their own opera:

  • Big History of Little England by Parlaunt Park Primary
  • Fox-Pop by St Ethelbert’s Catholic School
  • Machine Dream by Priory School
  • Peck! By Lynch Hill Primary
  • The World’s Beating Heart by St Anthony’s Catholic Primary School

Snappy Operas is a nationwide project run by Mahogany Opera, to create new opera with young people aged 7-11. The project aims to give all children the chance to experience the power of opera before they leave school.

In 2017 Mahogany Opera sent professional composers and librettists into primary schools in ten regions across the UK to create 10 brand new 10-minute operas. By the end of last year five of the 10 performances had successfully premiered.

This month will see premiere performances of the remaining five operas, in five different regions – Leicestershire, Hull, Bridlington and Scarborough, Slough, Tower Hamlets and Essex, bringing the total number of children performing to 1,500.

Laura Lancaster, head of Slough Music Service, said: “The Snappy Operas project helps us reach young people who wouldn’t normally have the chance to experience music and theatre.

“We want to show students that opera is for everyone. Opera has the power to increase a young person’s self confidence, self-expression and most importantly, their imagination.

“We’re proud to be bringing children, teachers, parents and schools together to share this very special event.”

Councillor Shabnum Sadiq, cabinet member for children and education, added: “Snappy Operas is a wonderful project that brings students together as one voice. There are no soloists or choruses – every character is represented by a group so that everyone feels fully involved at all times.

“We are very proud of the work Slough Music Service undertakes with children, young people and staff in Slough’s schools, and with those in the community to provide enhanced music services for all.”

The Snappy Operas performances are part of the Slough Music Festival 2018. Throughout the month of March young people will appear in choral, orchestral and classical music concerts across the borough.

On Saturday 17 March, the music service will also be holding a free music workshop, led by Slough Music Hub partner Neil Valentine. The workshop will take place at The Curve from 12-4pm, for students in years 2-6. Neil Valentine will help young people create their very own piece of music based on Gerry Anderson’s Thunderbirds and perform it to parents and friends in an informal performance at 3.30pm. All budding musicians are welcome, no experience necessary.

To sign up, or for more information about upcoming events, contact Laura Lancaster, head of Slough Music Service at www.sloughmusicservice.co.uk or phone 01753 875732.