With schools closed and the country in lockdown, we faced a new set of challenges in bringing our Samling Futures workshops to secondary school students this year.
We responded by holding masterclasses online and in doing so were able to widen the range of Samling Artists leading the sessions. Soprano Louise Alder and bass-baritone Milan Siljanov both joined us from Frankfurt and Munich and tenor Nicky Spence took time out from volunteering as a Covid-19 vaccinator to lead five of our current Samling Academy Singers.
In front of audiences of students and teachers from schools and the music education hubs in North Tyneside, Tees Valley and Northumberland, they demonstrated the range of techniques required to deliver a really convincing and personal performance. The sessions covered a wide range of repertoire, with song and opera in English, German and Italian.
Shakespearean actor James Garnon, who regularly leads on both of our programmes, also joined all of the sessions and encouraged the audiences to try out techniques to take ownership of a text and be honest and true in the moment.
Three students, chosen by the host Music Hubs, were also given opportunity to ‘have a go’ and work in masterclass with the Samling Artist leaders.
Academy Singer Martha Cook, pictured above working on Mozart’s ‘Un moto di gioia’ said, ‘It was a privilege to sing with Louise Alder, her input and advice was helpful and truly inspiring. Samling Institute has done a fantastic job at using technology so we can continue to sing and perform together.’
Nikki Lycett-Findlay of Tees Valley Music Service explained how the event had benefitted her students, ‘This was an incredible opportunity, I’ve had some lovely messages from my students saying how much they’ve taken from the experience and are now inspired to achieve similar goals and standards’.
We look forward to meeting the students who successfully auditioned for us following Samling Futures.