Monday 14 to Wednesday 16 October 2019
When artist Jane Mackay listens to music she sees vivid colours, images and shapes. Jane has synaesthesia, a neurological condition in which the stimulation of one sense leads involuntarily to the triggering of another sense. In other words, Jane ‘sees’ music. In 2018, Jane created a series of paintings based on her experience of hearing/seeing string quartet music composed by Britten and Mendelssohn.
This is an opportunity for pupils to see some of Jane’s artwork; learn about string quartets and composers; respond to art and music; and discover the fascinating world of synaesthesia.
Pupils could learn about the music in advance and respond by creating paintings of their own. They could then bring them to the workshops and compare their responses with Jane’s. Alternatively, children could come along to view the paintings with no prior information and respond to the art itself, saving the musical experience for the classroom later.
In these informal, entertaining and educational workshops, the instruments of the string family will be introduced and the students will be treated to an engaging tour of live classical and traditional music from around the world. We will explore the relationship between music and our senses and what happens when music collides with other art forms, such as dance, poetry, paintings and film. We will demonstrate special effects used in film music and discuss how visual movement also plays an important role in the creation of live music. Through games involving clapping and movement, students will be taught how to conduct ensembles and some students will have the opportunity to conduct the string quartet.
From Bach to Britten, trad to pop, there is something here for everyone to enjoy.
You can find out more information about this project and the works which inspired Jane here.