It’s that time of year when the End Of Year School Music Assembly looms large and terrifying. The whole school (about 100 children) and parents attend – usually around 40 or 50 turn up.
The tradition (which I started several years ago – why did I set myself up for this!!!) is that every class sings a class song, and each instrumental group has a slot, and finally we do a whole school song which is learned in the separate classes and put together On The Day, at the time of the performance.
My maddest ever whole school effort involved violins, ocarinas, clarinets, recorders, chime bars all coming together in a high-octane performance of “Raise My Voice” from the www.singup.org booklet “Get Healthy, Get Singing”. Each group had rehearsed separately, and on the day it miraculously came together with me leaping about trying to remember the structure of the song and cue everyone in at the right moment.
This year, the whole school song is “Yonder Come Day”, which is in three parts; an ostinato chant, a poem, and a song. Each class has learned all the elements, I checked the backing track to see how many repetitions will fit, and plotted out a master plan of who sings/chants what and when. However, there is NO WAY that I can cue each group to do their “verse” at the right time.
So, I have charted out the structure, and selected “singing leaders” for each group; one for year 5 and 6, three, working together for year 3 and 4, and three, supported by their class teacher, for Reception, year 1 and year 2.
So, in theory, all I need to do is press “PLAY” on the backing track and enjoy the song, instead of doing my whirling dervish act… I really do hope so, as it would be so impressive for the children to do the whole thing themselves.