The first half of the week of the Sistema England Young Leaders Programme is proof that working hard and having fun are entirely compatible. Young musicians from In Harmony Lambeth, In Harmony Liverpool, Sistema in Norwich and The Nucleo Project have gathered at Kingswood’s Overstrand Hall.

DSC_4297‘It’s been really difficult but good at the same way, because challenge is always good. I think that when you do something and it is too easy you get bored fast.’ Emily, 12, Sistema in Norwich.

DSC_4281‘We’ve been doing a lot of sight-reading, playing music we had never seen before. It is challenging but I think it is better because I like to learn.’ Reece, 11, In Harmony Liverpool.

DSC_4308‘It’s been great working with kids from other programmes because we are like a family now and we help each other. We are meeting new people, learning new skills and playing new music.’ Daniela, 12, In Harmony Lambeth.

DSC_4317‘The teachers make it fun. They are very nice and kind, and that just makes you want to work hard with them.’ Cameron, 10, The Nucleo Project.

On Monday the young leaders had their first orchestra session, to have a go at the Rondeau from Henry Purcell’s Abdelazer suite and an arrangement of music from the Harry Potter films. This was followed by a group discussion about their programmes.

On Tuesday they had instrument workshops, sectionals and a full rehearsal. They also had their fist reading of a string and percussion arrangement of Tito Puente’s Oye Como Va. The day ended with a video analysis and reflection on posture, physicality and expression, and with two very intense master classes: bass and cello with double bassist and Chineke! founder Chi-chi Nwanoku MBE, and violin and viola with Juan Carlos Maggiorani, from Sistema Portugal’s Orquestra Geração.

On Wednesday the orchestra has continued their rehearsals and started to work on Ritmos Ciganos, a Portuguese folk piece, ahead of a community performance and filming session to be held on Friday at Epic Studios in Norwich.

Sistema England is grateful to the generous funders and in-kind supporters of the Sistema England Young Leaders programme:

The BBB Violin Trust
The Ashla Charitable Trust
Norie Charitable Trust
Kingswood Learning and Leisure Group Limited
Individual donors through JustGiving: www.justgiving.com/sistema-young-leaders