Reading Week Roundup – Autumn 2017

As we reach the half-way point for Semester A, it’s a good time to see what our BA Music students have been up to since September: they’ve been really busy!

Some numbers first: 26 new students have joined us, we have 2 new members of staff (hello Litha and Steve!) and another new instrumental tutor (hello Theo!); we’ve opened 4 new soundproofed and fully-equipped rehearsal rooms, taken delivery of a new piano, and renewed more of our equipment; we’ve taken students to 4 performances, students are collaborating on music for 5 plays, 25 new compositions have been started, and students have had countless new musical experiences.

The new first years got straight into performing, putting together a gig at The Swan within their first two weeks, playing a whole variety of music from rock, to soul, to country. They’ve also been busy rehearsing with the staff-run department ensembles, preparing for the Autumn Showcase on 22 November in LPAC.

Performing in The Swan
First years performing in The Swan

Second year students saw comedian Stewart Lee talk about his career in a creative industry as part of the Curating Music module. They’ve been putting together a pitch for a music festival, to be delivered to an industry panel at the end of the year, whilst others have been working on their own EPs as part of Music Production and Enterprise. They’ve also been honing skills in either the Performance or Composition modules.

Stewart Lee
Stewart Lee Great Lives talk

Third years are going one step further, organising, curating and performing in their own festival to be held in May 2018, as well as starting work on individual projects for their practical and written dissertations, with projects ranging from an investigation of how musical theatre can address mental health, to a video performance of new experimental rock.

Going to see The Selecter and The Beat at the Engine Shed started off a busy schedule of live concert trips, ending up with a trip for the whole Music Department to Nottingham to see the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in a brilliant performance of Gustav Holst’s The Planets. Later in the term we’ll be off to Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival as it celebrates its 40th anniversary.

RPO live in Nottingham
RPO live in Nottingham

We’ve also had students presenting a staff-student research project, a collaborative project as part of the Dig Draw – ‘Drawing to Score‘, new students bands being formed, loads of interest at our open days, and more.

Drawing to Score
Students in the Drawing to Score workshop

And we haven’t even mentioned all the work from our staff, including performances and tours, world premieres of new compositions, publications, conference presentations, CD releases and radio broadcasts… More on that soon!

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