AYO Blog

AYO National Music Camp 2012: Blog 3
By Naomi Johnson

A group of bassoonists smile at the camera while holding their instruments
Combined forces: the bassoonists of the Bishop and Alexander orchestras meet for their morning warm-up.
A man smiles at the camera
Camp Director Howard Penny shows where his heart truly lies.
A flute quartet ensemble rehearses.
A Mozart flute quartet rehearses in the School of Music Cockpit!
Two percussionists pictured on stage with two large drums.
Members of the percussion ensemble get into the groove.
A young man and a young woman pose for a photo, leaning back in their chairs with their hands behind their heads
The AYO library staff taking a well-earned break!

Day 4

Wednesday, and everybody is well and truly settled into the hectic routine that is Camp life. The conductors and tutors continued to demand a high standard of the students. With notes falling more and more easily under the fingers, the focus turned increasingly to the meaning of the music and the sense of ensemble being created.

Chamber music was back on the menu in the afternoon, with everything from Telemann concertos to a Ligeti quintet and much in between wafting out of practice rooms and down the corridors. The sheer number of ensembles at Camp means several groups were forced to be a little more creative in finding a practice space, and almost every nook-and-cranny of the building was filled with music. Giant lamingtons waited as a reward for afternoon tea!

After dinner, those campers over 19 settled into the Manning Clarke Theatre for a professional development session. The evening was hosted by Words About Music tutor Genevieve Lang and focused on career decisions in music. Camp director Howard Penny, composition tutor Iain Grandage, conductor William Conway and tuba tutor Tim Buzbee shared their vast array of experiences, giving advice and answering questions from the students. The panel emphasised the variety of paths open to musicians, with examples from their own careers including time spent freelancing and working with diverse ensembles.  No matter what stage of their studies, all students were encouraged to stay curious about musical possibilities in their lives, and to continue to push creative boundaries in order to keep our art form fresh and relevant for the future. 

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