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Summer spells success for young Leeds musicians


Young musicians looking to perfect their skills are being given the opportunity to spend a week of their holidays playing with some of the region's finest performers as Opera North holds its first Summer Orchestra Camp in partnership with the University of Leeds School of Music.

The camp will run at the School of Music from 22-26 August and is open to young people from age 10 who already play an orchestral instrument. String players can be at any grade, while woodwind and brass players should be studying at grade 3 or above. Three of the days will also be suitable for percussionists.

During the week, the young people will take part in instrumental activities, singing sessions, and drama and movement workshops, exploring all aspects of musicianship in an inspiring and stimulating way. Participants will also get the chance to rehearse with members from the Orchestra of Opera North before playing with the full orchestra in a performance conducted by Martin Pickard at the James Graham Great Hall, Leeds Beckett University.

The theme of the Orchestra Camp has been inspired by Billy Budd. One of the Company’s Autumn season productions, Britten’s opera is set on board a battleship and tells the poignant story of the persecution of an innocent sailor by his superiors. Billy’s fate will be explored throughout the week and will be reflected in the concert repertoire which features sea shanties and other pieces with a nautical flavour.

Opera North Orchestra Camp is non-residential with sessions running from 9am-4pm each day. The cost of attending is £150 per participant which includes all workshops and the final performance on the Friday with the Orchestra of Opera North. Bookings should be made at Orchestra Camp before 31 July.

Children from In Harmony Opera North perform at Leeds Town Hall with the Orchestra of Opera North. Photo credit: Jonny Walton

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