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Classroom singing brings the world to Leeds


Music lessons at Windmill Primary School will be given an international flavour this Friday, 13 October, as the pupils are joined by two of the Master Trainers from the British Council’s music education initiative, World Voice.

More than 55 schools and over 3,000 pupils across the North of England are taking part in World Voice which runs throughout October. In Leeds, around 85 pupils at Windmill Primary School and Low Road Primary School, both of which are In Harmony Opera North schools, will come together to enjoy singing lessons led by Samuel Lewis from Sierra Leone and Patricia Cardona from Colombia. Each will share a song from their country with the aim of giving the children an insight into world culture through music. The sessions will be followed by a special performance in the school hall for parents and friends.

World Voice continues to amaze me with its ability to transform the atmosphere of a classroom for teachers and children, wherever it goes around the world. 

— Cathy Graham, British Council Director - Music

Samuel and Patricia will be resident at Opera North from 11 to 18 October. During their time in Yorkshire, as well as observing and delivering elements of Opera North's In Harmony programme, the two artists will be co-leading school workshops with Opera North Choral Delivery Artists in Leeds and Hull, taking part in Early Years activity, and working with community groups. They will also get a chance to see some of the productions in Opera North’s current Little Greats season of short operas at Leeds Grand Theatre.  

The British Council’s World Voice has already enhanced children’s learning in over 16 countries, including Nepal, Brazil, Jordan and Palestine, by using singing to develop musicality and improve academic outcomes in languages, science and maths. It is inspired by the National Singing Programme, using a blend of teacher training, online resources and performances. 

Photo credits:
In Harmony Masterclass - Simon Marshall
In Harmony End of Year Concert - Justin Slee
Opera North's L'enfant et les sortilè
ges 2017 - Tristram Kenton

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