Everyone’s a Winner with Music!

6th July 2010

England’s not a very happy place at the moment. Not only have they been knocked out of the World Cup football, but Andrew Murray didn’t get to the finals at Wimbledon either. Isn’t that sad? All that expectation. All that excitement. And all that time and hard work in training the sportsmen. What was it all for? To some people it must seem like a complete waste of time and effort. After all, England didn’t win. Andrew Murray didn’t win. They simply came away with nothing…

I wonder how many children feel like that in sports. I remember feeling like that sometimes. You work hard, train hard… and then you don’t win. The winner gets everything. He/she gets the prize. He/she gets the praise. And you get nothing. Nobody claps you. Nobody gives you a prize. You feel completely useless…

Now imagine this. Imagine a game of sports where everybody wins. Imagine a game where everybody trains hard, works hard, and at the end of it everybody feels great; everybody feels proud; everybody is clapped. Imagine that…

Well I don’t know about you, but I can’t imagine such a game. However I can imagine something else like that. It’s called making music together!

Last Friday I went to a concert. It wasn’t an ordinary concert, though. It was a concert by school children organised by Leicester Arts in Education. My older daughter was playing the trombone in it.

Now I must admit that I hadn’t given this concert much thought. I wasn’t expecting much. After all, my daughter, like many of the other children in the concert, had only been learning her instrument for less than a year. How could all these school-kids do anything other than make a lot of awful noise? I was used to going to concerts by professionals!! Oh dear, oh dear, I thought…

And then I heard the concert and… oh wow! Oh wow! They really did sound good. No kidding!

But that’s not the important point. The important point is that at the end of each piece of music the sense of pride and achievement was written over every child’s face! And for good reason too! The conductors asked a lot of the children. Second best was not acceptable. The conductors demanded first best. The children knew that—and responded. Not only that, the children knew they had achieved it. They knew they had something to be proud of. And so every child was clapped. Every child was praised.

I bet every child walked away from that concert feeling very special. I bet every child felt full of confidence. And I bet every child felt a winner!

There are no losers in music! Music does not divide people into winners and losers. Instead music celebrates all people and brings people together.

Well done to the organisers of the Leicester Arts in Education summer festival! They have given hundreds of children a sense of achievement that will stay with them for the rest of their lives!

Isn’t music great?

P.S. You too can feel this sense of achievement too! If you’re a child, why don’t you find out how you can take part in music at your school (or even out of school)? And if you’re an adult, why don’t you join a choir? Anybody can do it. And anybody can feel great about themselves for doing it!

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