Senior Pupils Hit the Decks

Following introductions to the harp and organ, the Music department rounded off its series of Taster sessions with a DJ session. The event was a big hit with Senior school pupils, with a crowd of boys and girls from Years 7-9 eager to have a turn on the decks.

With assistance from the Director of Music Tim Newberry, the session was run by Tom Armstrong, Head of Chemistry, famed throughout Colfe’s as ‘resident’ DJ often found to be on the decks at parties and events.

After familiarising themselves with the digital system, the group got to have a go on the decks, exploring how to change tempo, match beats, play simultaneous tracks, and transition effects including reverb, fade and echo. The group had great fun dancing and playing around with classic house and dance tracks, from Crystal Waters’ 1991 hit Gypsy Woman (She’s Homeless) and Rihanna’s We Found Love, to Rick Astley, recently enjoying a resurgence in popularity with a whole new generation.

The assembled pupils explained some of their reasons for coming along to the session, which ranged from “learning to DJ would be really interesting and cool” (Verity Y9), “I would love to do it at parties” (Isabel, Y9), to “I’ve had a bit of experience but would like to get better at it” (Arik Y8). Family rivalry was even cited as an incentive: “My dad has decks and I want to be better than him!” (Torin Y8).

The two previous Taster sessions for harp and organ resulted in the appointment of harpist Clara Gatti-Cornini as harp teacher, and Matthew Morley as organ teacher. Mr Morley is organist at St Brides Church, Fleet Street, conductor of the St Bride’s Orchestra, and also works as a chorus-master and repetiteur with some of the UK’s top choral groups including the BBC Singers and English National Opera.

Director of Music Tim Newberry said, “All three of our Taster sessions proved to be extremely popular. We are lucky to be able to offer such a large and diverse range of musical opportunity at Colfe’s, and are delighted that we can provide expert tuition in the harp and organ. The DJ Taster session was special as it invites participation from pupils who may not be already involved in extra-curricular musical activities, showing that even if you don’t play an instrument there is no barrier to the enjoyment of music.”

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