LEA Awards 2007 title

(In association with the Music Education Council,
the PRS Foundation and Jazz Services)


Performing Rights Society Foundation Diplomas


For 2006-2007, Caerphilly have built on the successes of previous years by staging an even greater number of expansive, creative projects, with far-reaching involvement throughout the borough. These include The Spirit of Caerphilly, a song cycle involving composition workshops, culminating in the production of songs with recordings made available to schools; Carnival of the Animals, a composition project for 250 primary students based around and performed alongside the Saint Saens work; and Find Your Rainbow, a world premiere by local composer Sian Jewell, involving a further 250 students. The extensive use of works by local composers, the employment of professional musicians, the involvement of parents and community members and the provision of resources made available to teachers further enhances the value and lasting success of these projects.

By offering students the opportunity to engage in a broader range of musical genres than previous years Caerphilly has responded constructively to PRS Foundation comments. A number of jazz and improvisation workshops, led by esteemed musicians, were offered, a Latin American music festival took place, and Rain Leopard was staged: a world music project involving 50 primary students and featuring professional percussionists, artists and dancers. While these special projects are the most visible examples of the fine work being done in Caerphilly, their ongoing commitment to creative music making is evident through the breadth and range of activities offered to students in the district, and it is for all of these reasons that they are deserving of a Diploma.

East Lothian

This year’s submission demonstrates that creative music-making forms an integral part of East Lothian’s already well established music services, with funding used to develop a number of inspiring partnership projects. 170 students from five primary schools participated in a project with Scottish Opera, with students composing and producing a short opera based on the life and values of local conservationist John Muir. Local composer Kenneth Dempster, working alongside the Edinburgh String Quartet, wrote an original piece to be used as a springboard for student compositions, with students performing their works alongside the Quartet. Fischy Music, a group of five professional musicians, visited 18 schools and involved 470 students in the staging of original songs on themes of identity and self-esteem.

These projects demonstrate East Lothian’s interest in involving students with professional music bodies and encouraging music creation, but their commitment extends to other genres and activities. The Electronic Music Project gave students the opportunity to make music on computers, adding vocals and live instrumentation and then sharing these works online; other projects involved working on video soundtracks and making music videos. While it would have been welcome to see these opportunities made available to a greater number of students, it is noted that these projects will be extended to all schools in the East Lothian area by 2008. With numbers involved in music education in the area rising, and music services being offered to an increasing number of young children, one can expect even greater things of East Lothian in coming years.

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