Pied Piper calls the tune for primary pupils

Pied Piper calls the tune for primary pupils
Belfast streets are alive, with the sound of music: Jonathan McWhinney (back middle) from Ulster Bank and daughter Ruby (bottom right) joined the party on Saturday as school children from across Northern Ireland participated in a costumed procession and concert in the Waterfront Hall as part of Ulster Bank’s Up the Tempo programme with the Ulster Orchestra. They are pictured with Samantha and Lauren (front left and middle) pupils from Dickson PS in Lurgan and characters from Beat Initiative.

The Waterfront was alive with music this weekend with primary school children from across Northern Ireland bringing a new musical presentation of the legendary story ‘The Pied Piper’ to the stage.

Pupils from schools across Belfast formed a 200-strong choir and sang with the Ulster Orchestra, a narrator and a dance group of 60 in the Belfast Waterfront Hall on Saturday night for the culmination of a major project built around a new musical presentation based on the Robert Browning poem, The Pied Piper.

They were joined in the audience by primary pupils from schools in Dungiven, Enniskillen, Dunloy and Lurgan who each participated in a series of workshops which focused on tempo, rhythm and melody and involved an element of art and dance to further unlock children’s creativity. The aim of the workshops was to encourage children to compose, learn and listen and to create a platform for the expression of ideas.

Before the concert, children gathered at Belfast City Hall wearing The Pied Piper-themed fancy dress and paraded to the Waterfront Hall where the visual artwork by participating schools was displayed in the foyer.

Up the Tempo is one of a number of projects supported by Ulster Bank’s community investment programme across the island of Ireland. The cross-border programme has as its theme ‘education and social inclusion’, and recognises that lack of educational opportunity for young people is a major barrier to them realising their full potential and ultimately taking their rightful place in society.

Richard Donnan, Managing Director, Ulster Bank said: “Music has an important role to play in education and young people’s lives. Ulster Bank is a committed supporter of the arts and is delighted to join with the Ulster Orchestra to bring music to hundreds of primary school pupils.”

“We have enjoyed a longstanding relationship with Ulster Bank,” said David Byers, the Ulster Orchestra’s Chief Executive. “We are delighted once again to be working with the Bank to develop young children’s musical skills through Up the Tempo. The cross-community and cross-city mix of The Pied Piper provides a great platform for unlocking children’s creativity, for the expression of ideas and for sheer enjoyment”.

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