This week I’ve been at a couple of schools in the depths of Norfolk photographing the early stages of the latest Schools Project, where the music and drama professionals embrace the ideas for an Opera based on Hansel & Gretal that the children will be performing in November.
It’s great turning up to these schools and spending a few hours watching their progress and shooting images of them. I always find it interesting to see how some children play up to the camera, very aware of what I am doing, while others continue and ignore what I’m doing. One of the best methods I use is to stick my 200 f2.8 lens on and sit behind the piano or something else and observe the scene as it unfolds in front of me, capturing the real essence of their progress in this amazing project.
A little bit about the project……….
Norfolk Schools Project
The Norfolk Schools Project is a free, opera-based arts project that Norwich Theatre Royal delivers biannually to selected Key Stage 2 schools. We work with the older range of Key Stage 2 (Years 6 and 5 primarily but also Year 4 when in conjunction with an older year group) and do not discriminate against perceived geographical or socio-economic barriers.
For our Norfolk Schools Project Autumn 2013 we will be working with three Primary Schools in the outskirts of Norwich and using Hansel und Gretel as our inspirational starting point. The schools will work independently on their own projects and come together for a performance on stage at Norwich Theatre Royal on Sunday 10th November 2013.
A Free Teacher’s Workshop based on skills in listening, composing and appraising will also be held at a Norwich-based school, prior to the project commencing. Last year 100% of teachers found the session useful to their on-going work at school. They felt the workshop leaders were inspirational, engaging and it was a great opportunity to refresh their creative teaching methods by participating.
How to Apply
Although there are few barriers to participating, your school must have at a minimum:
- A tuned, available piano or full-size organ.
- A rehearsal space big enough to accommodate the class during rehearsals and an in-school performance.
- A minimum class size of about 20. Smaller schools where different year groups are taught together can also apply (where the individual year groups are smaller than 20). So Year 5 and 6 together will be fine but not year 3 and 4.
- A class teacher who is committed to actively participating with their class in the project.
- A Head Teacher who is committed to the project by allowing the participating class to be flexible to their approach to their curriculum/ timetable for the duration of the project.
If you are keen for your school to participate in a future Norfolk Schools Project please write in the first instance to the Education Department stating your interest: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01603 598528
Following our Autumn 2013 Hansel und Gretel project, we plan to continue to run our Norfolk Schools Projects biannually in order to reach more teachers and pupils throughout Norfolk.
We have already scheduled a project for Spring 2014 ~ The Magic Flute, and will continue to apply to trusts and funding organisations to meet this commitment.
If you would like to support this unique project please contact the Fundraising Department to discuss the project in more detail and a breakdown of the financial cost. Norwich Theatre Royal is a registered charity – click here for more details of our fundraising campaigns.