children sat down play drums at burghclere school

Burghclere Primary School Celebrate World Music Day in Style

by Lucy Morgan (Chair of Burghclere School Brass Band Committee)

Started Out as a Small Idea

What an amazing celebration of music we had at Burghclere Primary School on Monday 21st June!

The Burghclere School Brass Band Committee came up with the idea last year during the first lockdown. We wanted to inspire all pupils in the school to get involved in music, whether it be brass, strings, vocals, modern, classical, jazz, rap, pop or anything in between!

School Tradition

We are extremely lucky to be a part of a school which has such a rich musical heritage. The Brass Band has been going for almost 50 years. It was established by Miss J Bright in the 1970s who, at the time, was the headteacher at the school. Ken Kelley then took over as head. Mr Kelley was a former Royal Marines senior musician in the Royal Yacht Band and he passed on his passion for brass to all the pupils who came through the school. During his time as head, almost every pupil learnt to play a brass instrument and being in the band was all but compulsory. The Band reached the finals of nation-wide competitions several times over and performed in the Royal Albert and Royal Festival Hall. I also learnt on Monday from a former pupil and band member, who now plays in Watership Brass, that the Queen came to visit the school and the Band played to her. What an amazing legacy!

The Band Now

The band today is a much smaller affair but those who do play in it and learn a brass instrument are enthusiastic and proud to be carrying on the wonderful school tradition. The school also offers lots of other musical opportunities such as singing in a choir or learning guitar, recorder or ukulele. We wanted to celebrate this and encourage all children to get involved in music as well as raise much needed funds for the music provision at school. The Musicathon on World Music Day was born and we couldn’t be more proud!

Busy Day

We challenged ourselves to have music ringing out across the school non-stop from 8.30am until 3.30pm. As well as performances from the children, we had volunteers from Hogan Music, VoxFresh, Stagecoach, Watership Brass and singer songwriters Maddison Douch and Marc Burford running vocal and instrumental workshops in class. There were also virtual workshops from a percussionist, Matthew Arnold, who is touring with the Lion King as well as from Jonathan Goodwin and Rebecca Millard, oboist and trombonist from a German Symphony Orchestra. Pupils came forward and performed on their chosen instruments and the whole school came together to sing "Sing" at the end of the day before the Grand Finale, where the School Band had the privilege of playing alongside Watership Brass. The sound they made together was incredible to hear!

A Day to Remember

The whole day felt like one big celebration of music and each and every child was buzzing and inspired by everything they saw and were involved in. We are proud of our musical heritage and are excited and confident that music will continue to be an integral part of our school for years to come.

Helping Hand From Hogan Music

“Burghclere led the way twice over on World Music Day, as an example of what could be achieved in a village primary school on one single day when many restrictions were still very much in place!

I know that our tutors Laura, Will and Alun thoroughly enjoyed their contributions to the day with try-out sessions and assemblies. As Lucy said, the school has a rich tradition for music making with a brass band almost fifty years old, and we feel honoured to be leading this from September. As well as this, we will be offering brass, drum kit and keyboard lessons - adding to the schools list of extracurricular activities.”

Sam Wyne, Head of Partnerships and Development at Hogan Music.