It’s been a couple of weeks since I last wrote in my blog- I took a short summer holiday! But I’m back today to talk about music. Music has been a big part of my life growing up and I hope it will remain forever. Read all about my musical life and look out for key words to talk about music (purple and bold) that have definitions at the bottom.
Music from a Young Age
My musical life started when I was four years old. My grandma had a piano in her living room and I used to sit and “play” for hours. I used to force my poor parents to listen to my “performances”! When I started primary school, I took up official piano lessons with a music teacher and I loved them!
In the UK, when you play a musical instrument, you can choose to follow the ABRSM syllabus, which is 8 grades, starting at grade 1. To accomplish each grade, you need to take an exam with an external examiner. In this exam, you present three or four pieces, you do some scales, some sight-reading and answer some general music theory questions. As an ambitious child, I started working towards my grade 1 right from day one and it wasn’t long before I was progressing through the grades.
Whilst at primary school, I also took to the recorder. I know, every school child learns to play the recorder, but I went that step further and took individual recorder lessons. I loved music, it was my favourite lesson at school and I enjoyed being able to sit at the piano or with a recorder and practise for hours on end.
By the age of 6, and being a rather dramatic child, I decided to take to the stage and my parents enrolled me in Stagecoach, a theatre performance school. Every Saturday, I’d wake up excited to learn acting, dancing and singing. Alongside the regular performances, we had the typical school plays and I started to excel in performance arts. At the age of 10 I auditioned to play a fairy in A Midsummer Night’s Dream Musical at a theatre in Middlesbrough and I absolutely loved it! A year later, I auditioned for Sleeping Beauty the Ballet and performed with many others at Darlington Theatre. I loved the performance arts! Throughout my time at Stagecoach, I picked up singing and by the time I left for secondary school I had a grade 4 in piano, had been selected to play piano at the high achievers concert for Darlington, had started and given up the flute and finally let go of my recorder years.
Music at School
In my secondary school, I was given the most amazing music opportunities. I immediately enrolled in the school’s junior choir and took up singing classes with a music teacher. I continued working my way through the grades and by the time I was ready to head on to university, I had achieved my grade 8 in both piano and singing. As part of the choir at my secondary school, we sang in some beautiful places, including York Minster, Ripon Cathedral and even St Mark’s Basilica in Venice.
Music at University
Coming to the end of secondary school, it was time to decide what I would study at university and I was set on doing music forever. After researching the industry and other areas of interest I made an extremely tough call not to study music at university, but to keep this as a lifetime hobby instead and to this day that’s what I’m doing.
I chose to do international business with languages at university, but was lucky enough to get a music scholarship, which gave me access to the university chamber choir, the university choir, the university graduation choir and music lessons with outstanding music professionals. With regular concerts and solos, I was lucky enough to sing in beautiful locations with the university choirs, such as St Giles’ Cathedral in Edinburgh and Rosslyn Chapel.
Music in the Big World
After leaving university, it became more difficult to make music a big part of my life. I have moved around a lot over the past few years, making it difficult to get settled in a local choir or find music teachers to progress with. However, I still love my music. In fact, the very first money I earned from my first job after graduating university was spent on a brand new piano!
Music is so important to me and I couldn’t imagine my life without it. Whenever I’m bored, I can sit down at my piano, I constantly sing around the house (probably driving my boyfriend crazy) and I love listening to music from all eras and all cultures.
Below are 12 key words taken from this post with definitions. Please be aware that there are sometimes many definitions for one word, it will depend on context.
Definition: To do a sample song/dance for somebody to see your talent. If they like you, you will be selected for a production
In our blog: At the age of 10 I auditioned to play a fairy,
Definition: A performance of a talent e.g. singing, dancing or acting
In our blog: I had been selected to play piano at the high achievers concert.
Definition: To stop doing something
In our blog: I had started and given up the flute and finally let go of my recorder years.
Definition: Information about the notes, rhythm, sounds and meaning of music
In our blog: To accomplish each grade, you need to … answer some general music theory questions.
Definition: A word to describe an art such as music, dance, drama, film
In our blog: I started to excel in performance arts.
Definition: To learn
In our blog:Ipicked up singing and by the time I left for secondary school.
Definition: A series of musical notes going up or going down
In our blog: To accomplish each grade, you need to … do some scales.
Definition: A theatre production created by a school
In our blog: We had the typical school plays…
Definition: To read music and perform it when you haven’t seen it before
In our blog: To accomplish each grade, you need to do … some sight-reading.
Definition: One person performs alone
In our blog: With regular concerts and solos, I was lucky enough to sing in beautiful locations.
Definition: To start something
In our blog: When I started primary school, I took up official piano lessons.
Definition: A piece of entertainment from an art that its presented to somebody, usually inside a theatre
In our blog: I decided to take to the stage and my parents enrolled me in Stagecoach, a theatre performance school.