Singing our own song

Arts Alight

Arts Alight song writing​ workshop participant’s find their own song with a little help

“LIFE without music doesn’t make sense,” five-time ARIA award winner Katie Noonan told enthusiastic participants in BCE’s inaugural Art’s Alight song writing workshop.

The renowned Brisbane singer/songwriter said music was integral to being human.

“Music is the most accessible art form,” she said.

“I believe everyone who can talk can sing, everyone who has a voice can make music.

“But I find it very sad that a lot of kids, three out of four kids, don’t get access to music and arts education from a dedicated arts specialist teacher.

“Thankfully, in the Brisbane Catholic Education (BCE) community the importance of music and the arts is understood and prioritized.

“You are the ones who give our young people a safe place to express themselves and to find their sense of worth, their sense of purpose and their sense of self through music.”

The song writing workshop, part of BCE’s Arts Alight project, was open to teachers, primary and secondary, specialists and non-specialists, APREs and anyone interested in developing knowledge and skills to lead a song writing process with a group.

The day began in prayer with some talented teachers leading BCE’s new song: We Are.

Workshop organiser Evelyn Chapman said Katie sang and spoke from her heart about the power of music and song to tell story.

“Katie talked participants through her own song writing practices and imparted examples of different approaches she used for her own writing process.

“She ended her session with a beautiful performance of her own songs.”

This was followed by a number of individual workshops, led by Caleb James and alumni from Griffith University’s Open Conservatorium.

Evelyn said participants found their inspiration and safe space to collaborate, sing, play, perform to lead their students to compose their own songs in response to the theme “We Are...”.

She said there would be opportunities to share the original compositions within their schools, with the wider community and across the BCE system.

“Keep an eye out on the Spire stream to view,” she said.

Throughout 2020, BCE’s Arts Alight project will focus on song, choir and performance, as we celebrate 175-years of Catholic Education in the archdiocese.

It will support teachers from a wide variety of backgrounds and skills through future tailored workshops and on-going, in-school support with mentors.

Evelyn said the aim was to develop sustainable and dynamic Arts experiences that become a distinct characteristic of BCE.

She said BCE valued the Arts as an area of learning and wanted to provide students and teachers access and opportunity to valuable experiences beyond the classroom that built cultural capacity across BCE. 

In future years the project will focus on different areas of the Arts, including Drama, Dance and Media and Visual Arts. 

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