Every term, FAM dedicates a certain amount of hours to delivering music workshops in the community with the aim of bringing the joy of singing to as many people as possible.
Some of the comments that came back to FAM after our workshops in a boys high school (ages 12-16) included:
I learned that you can have fun while singing!
I learned rhythm, tempo and how to keep a beat.
The random-est of sentences can make a catchy song.
It was really fun singing and dancing!
This term has been our busiest Outreach schedule ever and next term will most certainly exceed that. Fingal International Festival of Voices (FIFOV) will make sure of that!
As part of FIFOV, every single school in the Balbriggan area will receive a singing workshop, and our team of excellent music educators will work with school choirs. If a school choir does not yet exist, we will help the staff to set one up. The key is to have fun and enjoy the process. It is a priority for us that every child - and every adult along the way - has the opportunity to access music. Once they're in the room, we make it our mission to have fun!
We find that if our teachers have fun, the people they work with have fun. That is why we put a lot of effort into finding excellent educators, and we strive to train them at every opportunity. We are all still learning. It's important that we maintain the beginner's mindset if we are to make an impact on first-time singers.
Members of the Outreach team each have varying experiences of music education (some studied in Dublin, some in the UK, some in Germany and farther afield), but we all share a passion for music. This passion is infectious, no matter where in the world you come from, no matter what language you speak.
One of the integral facets of the festival is our commitment to use music as a way of CELEBRATING DIVERSITY AND BUILDING COMMUNITY THROUGH INCLUSION. We have created FIFOV as a platform where people can sing together, share their stories and entertain each other. This is the essence of culture and it is an enriching experience to be involved in. - Dónal Kearney, Director of FAM
As well as working with students from national schools and secondary schools across Fingal, we offer Continuous Professional Development (CPD) courses in music education to teachers of all levels; you can find out more by clicking here.
Overall they all really enjoyed it and it was super fun for them! From my point of view, I thought it was excellent and I learned a lot. - Mary Claire Ryan, St. Fintan's High School, Sutton [Music Teacher]