Following on from the cello and singing masterclasses last year, on Thursday 21 February, students from College and our Junior School enjoyed a 2 hour flute masterclass with renowned flautist Jennifer Raven - following on from the cello and singing masterclasses last year. Jennifer has performed in London’s Queen Elizabeth Hall as well as in several different countries including a British Council residency in Brazil. She is the co-founder of The London – Jerusalem Music Project, performing music by Middle Eastern composers in London and Israel. She studied at Trinity College of Music in London after graduating with a 1st class degree in Music from Bristol University.
This was a fantasic opportunity for the young musicians to gain new ideas about how to develop their techniques, with a particular emphasis on tone and production of sound. All pupils were advanced flautists and all, including 12 year old Lois, are currently working on pieces of grade 7 and upwards.
Gordon Busbridge, Director of Music, commented: "This was an excellent chance for the pupils to broaden their musical experience and to work with a renowned flautist. It was also an invaluable opportunity for them to perform in public and to learn not only from an expert but also from each other. Small masterclasses such as these really help break down shyness and enable the pupils to develop confidence in their playing. Next year we hope to run both brass and choral masterclasses so that as many of our pupils as possible can benefit from one to one tuition with leading musicians."
Here's what the students had to say about the experience:
"The masterclass really brought home the importance of warming up and of developing your sound. If you can develop your sound then you can develop your tone and I learnt several new ways to help me do this. I really enjoyed being able to focus so wholly on performing and getting the most out of my flute.
"I learnt that I'm doing essentially the right thing but that small improvements can really impact my performance. It's been wonderful having the opportunity to perform in College Chapel.
"In the past I have struggled with hitting the high notes and breathing but the techniques I've learnt today have really helped. I've really enjoyed being able to learn from watching other pupils and listening to the advice they are given. It's been great to learn together as a small group."
Pieces the students played were as follows:
Ruth Matthews - 1st movement from Concerto in A minor
Libby Caffrey - Minuet and Badinerie from Suite No.2 in B minor
Hebe Way - Sonata No.5 in E minor
Emily Lowde - Allegro 1st movement from Concerto in F
Lois Short - Adagio and Allegro