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Southwell Music Festival organisers encourage newcomers to give classical music a try

The organisers of Southwell Music Festival hope to make it as inclusive and accessible to as many people as possible ­— whether or not they have experience of classical music.

They are particularly keen to excite newcomers with their first experience of the classical repertoire, which is why about half the events in each festival are free.

Introducing young people to the enjoyment of music ­— both as performers and audience ­— is a special responsibility, and so the festival’s family concert is particularly important.

Credit: Dick Makin (13979537)
Credit: Dick Makin (13979537)

This year’s percussion-based event, Crash, Bang, Wallop! will give a chance to participate and to listen, and will no doubt be the festival’s noisiest concert.

It will also show that music can be found in everyday objects, so people are being encouraged to make their own instruments and perform in a specially-devised piece.

To fire people’s imaginations Esther Lynn, from Hockerwood Park, which is sponsoring the concert, has devised a music wall to show what is possible with household and farmyard items.

Credit: Dick Makin (13979539)
Credit: Dick Makin (13979539)

She used a few old spanners, an old jam kettle, a sieve, an old dog bowl, a plastic slat from the chicken shed, some metal washers and a random bracket from a bathroom basin.

Esther said: “It’s amazing what you can do with a heap of junk and some cable ties.”

Her daughters, Iona and Daisy, demonstrate the result in a video, which can be watched at https://www.instagram.com/p/ByuSrZeg_ST/

The music wall made its public debut at Southwell Fun Day in June, when people could try it out, and be inspired to make their own percussion instruments for the family concert in August.

The concert takes place at the Minster School, Southwell, on Saturday, August 24.

There will be an instrument-making workshop from 10am and the music will start at 11am.

Festival percussionist Keith Price and workshop leader Ruth Rosales are in charge, supported by members of the Southwell Festival Sinfonia.

Tickets are free for people aged 12 and under. Everyone else pays £8. All seats should be booked in advance, either online at www.southwellmusicfestival.com, by phone on 01636 330014 or in person at the Southwell Cathedral Shop.

This concert is perfect for anyone who may appreciate a more relaxed performance environment, including people of all sensory and communicative abilities.

Audience members are free to make noise, move about, and come and go as they please.

Southwell Music Festival is an annual, top-quality classical music festival taking place each August to celebrate classical music, raise the profile of the town and itsminster, and to inspire local musicians ­— especially young people.

Like the previous five festivals, the 2019 festival will be held over the bank holiday weekend, from August 21 to 26.

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