Wednesday June 29th, 2016

Gala Performance: Riddle out of that, then!

Gala composer Jana Rowland with working with pupils from Woodbridge School

Gala composer Jana Rowland working with pupils from Woodbridge School

A Monday morning in June saw 74 Year 7 pupils engaged in a composition workshop with Jana Rowland.  They had been called in to help with the preparations for the revival of the riverside boatyard area at Whisstocks planned for May 2017.

Their mission was to begin the challenging process of imagining and scripting unusual voices. On Monday they began their journey to becoming riddle writers, exploring sound, rhythm and the excitement of de-familiarisation (the artistic technique of presenting to audiences common things in an unfamiliar or strange way).   So war became ‘a rolling rhythm of never-ending fear’ and a 12-year-old pianist was transformed through the creative power of nine riddlers to ‘the king of strings and hammer of keys.’  One boy became known as the ‘harrower’ because of his propensity for telling terribly scary stories.

Year 7 will now return to their classes to complete the challenge: voicing the stories and the sounds of the objects of a king.  Radwaeld will return (May 2017) and it may just be that our Year 7 writers will have played their part in the composition of a day to remember.

Jana Rowland - Woodbridge School rehearsal 2
This is an extract from the Woodbridgian Weekly e-newsletter from Woodbridge School.

The King’s River Gala Production will take place at the redeveloped Whisstocks boatyard from 25 to 29 May 2017.


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