5 April 2017

Thousands of Sheffield school children hit the right note at Sheffield’s City Hall last week (Friday 31 March), performing in harmony with one of the UK’s top orchestras.

The Hallé Orchestra was back at Sheffield’s City Hall, following the success of last year’s outstanding Concert for Schools. This year they performed to children from 44 Sheffield primary and secondary schools, with the theme ‘Made in the British Isles’.

The concert was so successful last year that the Music Hub organised two performances this year, which once again sold out. Three schools brought all of their KS2 pupils, and more than 3,000 school children heard and joined in with the performances.

Children were treated to familiar classic melodies with a British theme, such as the James Bond Theme and Handel’s Music for the Royal Fireworks. The children all learned this year’s chosen sing-along number – From a Railway Carriage – and performed together in mass chorus on the day.

Councillor Jackie Drayton, Cabinet Member for Children, Young People and Families at Sheffield City Council, said: “This year we were able to bring the wonder of the Halle Orchestra to double the amount of children as last year, and the response from schools was fantastic.

“Music is an important part of children’s development, and we want all children in the city to have the opportunity to fulfil their talents and dreams. Through our Music Hub, working with partners we can make sure this is a reality, and true to Sheffield’s rich musical history, we may even unearth the stars of our future.”

Ian Turner, Director of Sheffield Music Hub: “It is such a fantastic opportunity for thousands of children and young people to watch the Hallé Orchestra, who knows what fire that will light in their belly for music.

Sheffield Music Hub exists so that once that fire has been lit we can support children who are inspired events, such as the concert today, in whatever kind of musical way they want to go. Once again we thank the Hallé Orchestra for their support.”

Leo Birtwhistle from Sheffield was chosen for this year’s Young Music Composer piece and his score was premiered by the Hallé Orchestra at both concerts. Leo talks about how he was first inspired by the Hallé Orchestra.

He said: “It is a tremendous opportunity to write for this orchestra, not just because they are phenomenal musicians but for me there is a personal reason. The Hallé was the first orchestra I ever heard live when we were taken as GCSE students, from that day I was hooked.

“I hope I can pass on some of what I have learned, and who knows, some of the children may become as addicted as I did,”

The Hallé Orchestra, based in Manchester at Bridgewater Hall, are regulars at Sheffield’s City Hall and other theatres across the UK. Now in their 159th season the Hallé ranks among the UK’s top symphonic ensembles.