Funded with a grant from Affinity Sutton, Community Music in Action delivered a music project at St Hugh’s Community Centre in Anerley this August. Led by Aaron Duncan and Bonita Charles, the week long ‘summer school’ was for young people aged 8-13 years.
Over the course of the week the young people were to write and produce their own original song, as well have the chance to make beats and learn how to DJ.
They arrived on Monday morning seeming shy and reserved but after some ice breakers and musical games, they soon started to open up and relax. Together they came up with ‘Bravery’ as the theme to their song and split into groups to work on the lyrics.
By Wednesday they were ready to record their song and it was exciting to see it all coming together. Aaron showed the young people how to produce the song using the sequencing software Logic Pro. Throughout the week he also took the young people off into small groups to work on making beats and DJ’ing using his decks. This was all made into a CD that was given to each participant at the end of the week.
On Friday morning, Bonita worked with the group on building confidence, voice projection and creating a stage presence. By the afternoon they were ready to perform their finished song to a small audience of family and friends.
Click below to listen to the song – We think it sounds fantastic!
- to learn and develop skills in MC / lyric writing, sound engineering and producing
- to engage young people in the Affinity Sutton housing estates in positive activities in their local area and promote community cohesion
- to build confidence and foster self belief
- to encourage working together as a team and building on individual strengths
- to leave a legacy and for young people to become regular active users of the centre and attendees of the youth club after the project is over
Aaron Duncan is a skilled artist practitioner with a proven track record in providing creative workshops and short courses for young people in and around London. He currently coordinates a youth recording studio in Anerley Town Hall called The Mixtape Project, where he provides drop-in style recording sessions, artist development courses and educational music programs.
Bonita ‘Bella’ Charles is a creative arts practitioner in London. She is also a singer / songwriter / MC.