School Principals support Chamber Music in Schools

Photo: April Kelson, Deidre Rickards, Robert Jackson, Mark Harrison and Inge Brasche

Since 2008, NECOM has continued to present the Chamber Music in Schools programme to staff and students in the North Western Region of NSW and in this report I would like to pay tribute to three of the Heads who have actively supported their student’s Music education by involving themselves in the Presentation.  This type of support from the busiest person in the school reflects the understanding they have of the importance of the subject of Music in their school.

When Matthew Hobbs was Principal of Armidale City Public school, I knew that he had an AMusA in the Clarinet and we arranged some of our programme so that he could present with us. It was a privilege having his excellent sound in our ensemble and it allowed the students to appreciate their Principal in a different way. They suddenly saw him as a musician:

The 13th March started with Bruce Myers, Music teacher from the Armidale Secondary College, being interviewed on ABC morning Radio. He talked about why he felt it was important for Year 7 students to hear the NECOM Trio play works from the Classical repertoire. This was followed by the Trio giving three 50 minute sessions to the three Year 7 groups and the script for the first presentation was professionally led by the School Principal, Carolyn Lasker.

The students immediately realised that this was special and Ms Lasker comfortably led the students through the wide range of repertoire. Each session ended with the Jeremiah Clarke “Trumpet Tune” and we were thrilled to be able to engage the excellent Brass skills of Bruce Myers who played with us for this work. This programme is designed to complement the contents of the Music syllabus and to support Classroom teachers as they work to teach students a repertoire which they may not have ever heard before. It is always an absolute delight to Present Chamber Music in a school where the Principal steps out and makes time to join us in this highly valued programme.

This year we presented in the TAS Middle School. The Director of Music, Leanne Roobol also brought her Year 12 students and Middle School Music teacher Inga Brasche, led the first presentation. The Head of Middle School, Mark Harrison, enthusiastically took the script for the second session and demonstrated his commitment to the programme. This engagement also allowed him to show the students that he embraced the content as he steered them towards a greater appreciation for the repertoire.

Deidre Rickards
“Chamber Music in Schools” NECOM