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White Rose Learning Centre have hosted an exciting summer project for young people aged 9-12, Summer School Musical, which is to be performed to an invited audience at Leeds Grand Theatre’s Howard Assembly Room on Thursday 12th August. Supported by Find Your Talent Summer School Musical was developed with the aim of creating and producing a musical from start to finish in two weeks.

33 performers, supported by 6 peer mentors (age 14-17) have been selected from Seacroft Manston, Morley and Inner North West areas of the city with the aim of introducing young people to the performing arts and to engage them with the heritage of Leeds Grand Theatre.

Summer School Musical was written, created and rehearsed (at the Howard Assembly Room) within eight days – the young performers have written their own music for the show alongside musicians and artists including Danny Gough, Claire Bleasdale and Naomi Parker.

Themed around ‘a journey through time’ the show centres on a group of teenagers who stumble across a derelict house where they find musical relics from the past which transports them through music from the 1960s into the present day.

The project has taken place at various locations including White Rose Learning Centre, BBC Media Centre at Primrose High, and the Derek Fatchett City Learning Centre. A partnership between Education Leeds Study Support, Leeds Grand Theatre and Extended Services, the project has enabled children and young people to work with a range of artists to develop their creative confidence, build new skills and have the opportunity to perform their own work in this prestigious Yorkshire venue.

White Rose Learning Centre have worked in partnership with Find Your Talent to deliver the Performing for Success Arts Award in the Morley area of Leeds.   

The project is currently in its fourth term and has worked with a new batch of pupils each term from Year 6 – 9 at Drighlington and Fountain Primary Schools. Learners have been encouraged to explore the arts and experience a variety of art forms through performance.  

 

Each term has focused on one art form – last year the schools worked with a drama tutor to rehearse and perform an original piece at Leeds Grand Theatre. The pupils also had backstage tours of the West Yorkshire Playhouse. The following term, year 6 pupils worked with DAZL dance facilitators to choreograph a dance piece.

 

This term Performing for Success has worked with the singer/songwriter Danny Gough to write and perform original lyrics which were recorded onto a CD. Pupils were also given backstage tours of Leeds’ historic venues and attended a performance of VOICES: The Forty Part Motet by Janet Cardiff at the Howard Assembly Rooms in Leeds.  

 

As part of the Gifted and Talented National Strategy year 7 pupils (who already have an interest and talent in music) are also working with a musician to compose an original piece which will be performed at a forthcoming celebration event at the White Rose Shopping Centre.

 

Next term the project goes across the city to be replicated out in two other learning centres where the focus will be on radio production, poetry and martial arts; all of which will be accredited through the Arts Award scheme.  

What was FYT?

Find Your Talent was a national programme to explore new ways of opening up cultural and creative opportunities to young people. Leeds was one of the ten FYT Pathfinders in England.

The programme was led by Leeds City Council and Education Leeds, working closely together and with the city's cultural and community sectors to find ways for more young people to participate in the cultural life of the city.

FYT was funded to operate between 2008-2011 but its legacy in Leeds continues through activities under the Breeze banner, as well as other initiatives.