The whirlwind that is September and October

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There’s always a moment at the beginning of September when I have a flashback to my teaching days.
Beginnings of terms and beginning of years bring memories and experiences to the surface.
I am someone who spent so long in education that ’next year’ for me always begins in September.

September brings with it huge amounts of ‘revving up’ to get myself back into top gear.

A lovely warm up to the new academic term has been my involvement in the Brass Remade project at the Barnsley Civic Art Gallery, working with young people around the glorious Cornelia Parker exhibition [pictured]. Four primary schools from South Yorkshire, having the marvellous opportunity to work with composer Lucy Pankhurst and instrument maker Paul Jefferies.

And me.

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The young people [brass players themselves] write their responses to the exhibition, come up with music for Lucy to use, and designs for instruments for Paul to develop further.

The sheer beauty of the exhibition, a marvel of shapes and shadow and the gleam of metal inspired the children to write some fabulous things for me.

The project will culminate with a concert of music, poetry and instruments in March 2017. I’ll let you know more nearer the time.

Apart from that I’m reading and preparing for the Ilkley, Beverley and Off the Shelf Literature Festivals at the beginning of October, interviewing luminaries from Tracy Chevalier to wine connoisseur Jancis Robinson, from Louis de Bernieres to James Kelman.

And a nod to November [when I will give more detail] is a concert in Cardiff where I will have the huge honour of hearing my specially commissioned sonnets set to music….