by Cyrilla Rowsell
This year’s Summer School now seems very far away – but the impact that it had on so many people, both participants and tutors alike, remains.
It was a hugely successful and vibrant course, with 90 students and a host of superb tutors. We were delighted to welcome for the first time Dr Árpád Tóth, whose lively, energetic and enthusiastic approach was appreciated by all. We also welcomed Allan Wright from France. Allan has taught on the past two Spring Courses but this was his first Summer School. His humorous, hugely knowledgeable and down-to-earth approach to the voice had a huge impact on us all. Simon Kent assisted Allan as accompanist for individual singing lessons. We welcomed back Lenci Igó, a long-standing and greatly-admired teacher, and also Eleanor Meynell, who has taught singing for us previously. Dr László Norbert Nemes cast his usual magical spells on the choir, and several students experienced Dr Orsolya Szabó’s own particular brand of magic in individual piano lessons and with chamber music groups. We were also very pleased to have Alexander Technique lessons offered for the first time, given by Peter Wakefield.
The tutor team was completed by Siân Davies, Lucinda Geoghegan, Esther Hargittai, Zoe Morris, Alan Murdock, Cyrilla Rowsell, Christine Wrigley and Miranda Zwalf.
We were so pleased to have students from various parts of the world travelling distances to attend the course – participants came from Ohio, USA; Hong Kong; Japan; Dubai; Belgium and France.
Twenty-one students commenced the shiny new Kodály Certificate Course (Level One). Students opted for either the Early Childhood, Primary, Secondary or Instrumental strands. This is an exciting new development for the BKA and it is very gratifying to have so many students signing up for the course’s inaugural year. The Level 2 course, to commence at the Summer School 2015, is currently being devised and written by our experienced team of tutors.
There was an excellent variety of evening workshops – gospel singing with the inimitable Sharon Stacey (ably assisted at the piano by Jay Stannard), choral improvisation with Árpád, a vocal workshop with Allan, and an evening discovering the intricacies of the melodies and harmonies of The Beatles, given by Bootleg Beatle founding member André Barreau. The week was rounded off with a quiz, raffle, concert and party.
We are already busy planning next year’s course.