Ballarat High School Year 11 VCE Music student, Paula Maki, recently participated in the Creative Music Making workshop as part of MSO’s 2017 Regional Tour. This is what she had to say…
The MSO creative workshop gave students an opportunity to create our own music. It was led by presenter, Thea Rossen and Indigenous composer, Eric Avery, who sang a song he had written, called Yananha. His voice was very distinct and warm as he sang in his melodic language. I loved the sound of the words because they seemed to roll off his tongue. Eric sang to us (Ngathu wirika yananhi) and then we copied it back.
There was something very raw and natural about the session because we used only our voices and body for percussion. We kept it simple, focusing more on the feel and groove rather than mechanically reading off a music stand. When we made groups to create our own song, we sat under a tree in the sun and used Major 7th chords to reflect the simple and peaceful mood of the session.
Eric played the violin and sang with us at the end. MSO cellist, Nick Bochner, also played, his liquid fingers supplying a rich tone underneath the melody lines. I wanted to win him over so I asked him to play a Bach suite for us and it was one of the most wonderful things I had heard in a long time! He was very touched. The combination of beautiful weather and creativity in its simplest form made the workshop really peaceful and enjoyable.