THEME OF THE WEEK: RURAL MUSIC
We know that it can sometimes feel as though big towns and cities get all the action when it comes to live music. What happens when you live in a small village, where the biggest performance space is a local hall (if you’re lucky) and your local orchestra consists of 4 flutes, a djembe and a very persistent nightingale? Never fear, Make Music Day and NYMAZ have a plan, and you are part of it.
For Make Music Day, NYMAZ are encouraging as many people as possible to think creatively about their locations and who they are performing for. We asked Sarah McWatt, NYMAZ director, for some inspiring ideas and tips for rural performers.
“We hope to see some performances in wild and remote locations, from windswept North Yorkshire Moors to Dorset clifftops – the combination of performers and the landscape can be really powerful. We’d love to see performers of all ages in village schools, local choirs and bands performing music they love in the places that mean something to them.” – Sarah McWatt, director of NYMAZ
We want you be involved in Make Music Day even if – especially if – you live 15 miles from the nearest performance space. It is an opportunity for you to make music on your own terms, in your area, however and wherever you want – and broadcast it to the whole world.
It doesn’t matter what instrument you play or what style of music you sing. Dust off your double bass and find your favourite view. That one which you always take your friends to see when they visit. Then perform something.
If you don’t know what you want to perform, why not try our official Make Music Day song, Bring Me Sunshine? To unify as many of our rural performances as possible we are encouraging people to perform this piece specifically, and we have lots of free arrangements available for use. But you can perform whatever you want.
MUSIC FROM EVERYWHERE
“Location is no barrier to sharing an experience with like-minded people, wherever they are based!” – Sarah McWatt
If you play a song on the guitar in the forest and nobody hears it, how do we know it happened? No problem! These days, a smartphone or laptop is all you need to broadcast your performance to the world.
Ideally we want as many people as possible to live-stream their performances but if that’s not possible, so long as you can video your performance you can upload it later. (There’s lots more information about the technical side in our resources).
“Live-streaming allows you to experience the energy, excitement and intimacy that a live event offers. It adds a tangible connection with performers and with other audience members, whether they are in front of the stage, or streaming it in another country.” – Sarah McWatt
Stream or post your performances on social media using the #MakeMusicEverywhere and #MakeMusicDayUK hashtags, and you will be part of a worldwide performance, making your mark locally, nationally and internationally on Make Music Day.
Follow the hashtags to see what others are doing and enjoy a free, worldwide concert, regardless of whether or not you are performing yourself.
“It would be wonderful to have a real range of performances from as many different parts of the country as possible, coming together as a showcase of the talent and diversity of the rural musicians of the UK.” – Sarah McWatt
We can’t wait to see what you come up with.
WHO ARE NYMAZ?
NYMAZ champions pioneering new ways to overcome the challenges that those living in a rural area may encounter when accessing music. Though based largely in North Yorkshire, their work covers areas as diverse as Cornwall, Lincolnshire and Norfolk. They have developed digital music education project Connect:Resound, and, with technical partners, UCan Play, created various teaching and business models to deliver accessible music sessions online, to ensure that location is no barrier to learning and enjoying music and the strong social connections it creates.