YOUNG singers reached a crescendo in their learning thanks to a choral workshop with national coaches.
Haughton Academy hosted the session, which was led by Jamie Wright, a graduate of the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain Fellowship Programme and Royal Academy of Music, who has coached groups for BBC2 and with the star of The Choir Gareth Malone.
Up to 200 pupils from Years 6 to 11 joined in the 2018 Durham Vocal Festival, working with Durham Music Service and the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain at The Education Village, Darlington.
The aim was to support transition, the often daunting jump from primary to secondary education. Taking part were GCSE music students, choir members and Year 8-10 pupils from Haughton Academy.
They were joined by pupils from Springfield Academy, Year 7 and 8 choristers from Hurworth School, the Year 6 choir from Whinfield Primary School and Red Hall Primary School.
Students took part in a variety of voice warm up exercises, improvisation, singing in the round and solo performances.
Children explored their voices and how best to combine them into a performance to remember, giving them a fresh insight into a variety of music, techniques and a new awareness of what they can achieve.
The sessions, organised by Haughton Academy head of music Lisa Armstrong, also boosted self-esteem and improved their social, teambuilding and leadership skills.
Jamie said: “The aim was to take the children out of their comfort zones and they rose well to the challenge.
“They were brilliant. Everyone is capable of clicking with something and by exposing them to as much repertoire as possible you could see them spark.”
Haughton Academy assistant head teacher Fiona Campbell said: “Moving from primary to secondary education is a pivotal time in the education of young people and anything we can do to ease that transition is essential.
“The music workshop was absolutely amazing and all the children were buzzing when they left having pushed their personal boundaries and made some great new friends from other schools.”