World-class violinist Nicola Benedetti and Big Noise launched a fantastic new series of free 'Super Strings Sessions' for hundreds of young musicians.
The Super Strings Sessions are supported by players of People's Postcode Lottery. Sessions took place in Aberdeen on Monday 3rd September and in Stirling on Tuesday 4th September. Further sessions will take place in Glasgow on Sunday 7th October with the project culminating in an exciting Festival of Strings Day at the Caird Hall, Dundee on Tuesday 9th October.
The charity Sistema Scotland is celebrating ten years of delivering its transformative Big Noise programme in Scotland. Young people from all across Scotland who play violin, viola, cello and double bass were invited to join Nicola Benedetti, children and inspirational teachers from the four Big Noise centres in Stirling, Glasgow, Aberdeen and Dundee.
The Big Noise programme uses music to transform the lives of children living in disadvantaged communities. It uses the symphony orchestra and learning a musical instrument, via an immersive and intensive programme, as the tools to equip children with a wide range of social and life skills including confidence, resilience and aspiration.
Nicola Benedetti said, "By attending the sessions, children and young people will not only have fun and make new friends but they will also learn to collaborate. I will be working to help improve their playing technique, freedom of expression and command of their instrument so that each element combines individually, and within an ensemble, to create the fullest sound possible.
"Being a 'Big Sister' to Big Noise is dear to my heart and I'm fiercely proud of the work I've done with Sistema Scotland over the past ten years including the many visits I have made to perform with the children and learn how they have progressed."
Nicola Killean, Chief Executive of Sistema Scotland, said, "Young people coming together from each of our Big Noise centres and being able to join together with other young string players from across Scotland and make music and share experiences, is a fantastic way to celebrate our tenth birthday.
"The objectives of the Super Strings Sessions are three fold. The first is Social. We want to nurture collaboration among the young people and help them to develop networks. Second is Artistic. Nicola Benedetti will help the children to create a Big Sound by giving them techniques to express themselves while playing and take command of their instrument. Finally, Empowerment. We are holding workshops with some of the children to help develop a shared voice for young string players in Scotland so that they can have their say on improvements for the future.
"Nicola Benedetti is a wonderful supporter of Big Noise and she is a fantastic role model for our young people to aspire to. Big Noise children are really looking forward to working, playing and learning from their 'Big Sister', alongside young string players from right across Scotland who may be learning through their local music service."
Laura Chow, Head of Charities at People's Postcode Lottery, said, "Over the last five years players of People's Postcode Lottery have supported the powerful work of Sistema Scotland. We have seen first-hand the impact of the work and the confidence it inspires in so many young people engaging with the Big Noise programmes across Scotland. Players' support is now enabling children and young people to come together for these Super Strings Sessions to benefit from the extraordinary commitment and inspiration of Nicola Benedetti. We wish all participants a wonderful experience!"