Case Study: Musician-in-Residence at the Royal School for Blind Children, Liverpool
Over the course of a year, LMN horn player, Jonathan Harris made weekly visits to this Liverpool school, which caters for children with a visual impairment and additional disabilities, including multi-sensory impairment, from across the North of England. During his visits, Jonathan worked one-to-one with pupils and with classes from the primary department, encouraging them to explore musical sounds and create their own music as part of a group. In addition, Jonathan’s quintet, Souza Winds, gave 6 participatory concerts throughout the year, incorporating performances which the children had worked on with Jonathan. Teachers remarked on the impact which the project had on individual children, some of whom had shown little response to music before. “It is hard to motivate some of our children, but Jonathan managed it with the music he used”. The sessions helped some pupils achieve their ‘termly’ targets, for example in one child’s case, learning to recognise people. Jonathan commented that as he got to know the children, he was able to tailor his sessions more appropriately to their needs and link in with their speech and physiotherapy sessions. This helped to encourage more positive responses from the pupils.