Sponsoring Organization: Organized by Susan Walker (BSIC Committee Member)
|Date & Duration.||Performer||#’s in Attendance||Location of Event|
|Tues. April 25/23am|
100 minutes includes set-up & packing up
|Teilhard Frost||Children: 34|
Kindergarten – Gr. 8
|St. James Major Catholic School, Sharbot Lake, On|
|Tues. April 25/23pm|
100 minutes includes set-up & packing up
|Teilhard Frost||Children: 84|
Kindergarten – Gr. 8
|Land O’Lakes Public School|
Mountain Grove, On
|Wed. April 26/23am|
100 minutes includes set-up & packing up
|Teilhard Frost||Children: 32|
Kindergarten – Gr. 8
|Clarendon Central Public School|
|Thurs. April 27/23am|
90 minutes includes set-up
|Teilhard Frost||Children: 76|
Primary, Junior, Intermediate
|North Addington Education Centre|
Thurs. April 27/ 23pm
90 minutes includes packing up
|Teilhard Frost||Children: 90 (some had to leave early)|
Primary, Junior, Intermediate, High School music class
|North Addington Education Centre|
EVALUATION OF EVENT:
From my perspective (Susan Walker) it was highly successful as you will see from the following teachers’ and students’ questions and comments:
North Addington Education Centre – 2 Sessions
Hi Susan and Teilhard,
What a great show! Thank you both!
Susan, as promised, you’ll find below some comments about Teilhard’s awesome show.
“Teilhard’s musical talents, coupled with his humour and rich knowledge of the history and geography of his instruments, kept us all leaning in, clapping and singing along. I forgot myself for a while and became a kid right alongside my students, grinning and taking in all the amazing sounds and stories. Teilhard’s heartfelt message that music is organic and meant to be shared is warm, welcome and reassuring amid the harsh bleep and bloop of our technological age. Students and staff are already asking when we can have him back!” – Mr. Reynolds
“I got a little misty when you played Rainbow Connection” – Mrs. Coombs
Student Questions and Comments:
“I can’t wait to get home to tell my Dad about Teilhard. He loves that kind of music. He’s gonna be soooooo jealous!” – Paisley
“Thanks for coming to our school. I loved your music and I had no idea that you could make a banjo from a gourd!!” – Michael
“When you played the beautiful song on the viola, it reminds me of a tune my parents love to listen to at home” – Norah
“He could beatbox and play the jaw harp at the same time. That was wild” – Gabe
“My favourite part was learning how to hambone!” – Sophia
Thanks again, Teilhard and Susan, for bringing the show to NAEC. Much appreciated. Please keep in touch. If you are promoting anything else moving forward, please keep us in mind. Also, I’m not sure how accessible the Blue Skies summer camps would be for some up this way but, just in case, could you send any information along, Susan, that you might have? Is it at the festival site this year?
All the best,
Terry (Terry Reynolds, Gr. 5 Teacher, NAEC, Limestone District School Board)
Student one word comments when asked by me what they felt about the musical experience– no names: Awesome! Spectabulous! Charming! Wonderful! Talented! Magical! Really Good!
St James Major Catholic School:
Live music, what a great opportunity. Thank you. – Mr. C
I couldn’t believe the little ones. They were totally engaged the whole time. I have never seen them like that before. – Teacher 2
Can I feel the hair of the horse? (The bow) – Porter
Those two instruments look like drums and guitars (They were banjos) – DJ
Some Student Comments and Questions:
A bit about Blue Skies. Will you be playing? – Nathan
My dad has a banjo and Grandma has a guitar and ukulele. – Lilly
You use a lot of string instruments. I like them a lot. – Exie
Land O’Lakes Public School
Great show! I love the worldly nature of the presentation – a bit of history, geography, great music and unique instruments. Excellent rapport with the students as well. The guy (Teilhard) also has cooler hair than me. – Mr. Harding
I heard nothing but great things about the performance. I’m so disappointed I missed it! We’ll put the picture on our website. – Kathy Bateman
Student Questions/Comments (I, Susan, took the notes so student names are missing.)
VERY interesting! I learned a lot about new instruments and how to play them. – Teacher 3
It’s cool that you make banjos out of vegetables.
What’s the highest note you can play on the violin?
The jaw harp is really weird.
I liked everything.
Do the spoons hurt? Do they have to have bends in them?
The violin sound is beautiful.
Clarendon Central Public School
He took them around the world in 80 minutes. Teacher 2
It was great to see all the ways of being creative. Teacher 3
On behalf of the 4-8 class and myself I would like to thank Teilhard Frost for coming and performing at Clarendon Central Public School. This was a great experience for our little northern school and we all had so much fun. – Ms. Wilkes
Students were very engaged, participated excitedly and wanted to play along with him. So many different instruments with explanations of what they are, what they’re made of and then a demonstration of how you us them. He makes it very hard for students NOT to follow along with him. Thank you for sharing your amazing musical gifts with us at Clarendon Central Public School (Plevna). Teacher
Student Question and Comments:
I want all of us to make music together. All of us sing together.
Will you come back?
Can you make a banjo with elastics?
Suggestions from the schools for more of Teilhard:
The children were dancing from the moment Teilhard began his performance. He opened with his fiddle, harmonica and percussive foot tapping. They were away to the races. When he visits again perhaps a space for dancing could be added or a square dance.
Adding a workshop for a smaller number of students to take place after Teilhard’s larger performance would be great. Workshops such as: learning to master playing the spoons, making and playing the Jaw harp, an expanded Hambone time and/or making a simple stringed instrument.
Impact of BSIC Grant on the Event:
The BSIC grant money brought a high quality musical performance and an exceptionaleducational experience to students who rarely have live music brought into their schools. Musicians cannot afford to travel to the northern reaches of the Blue Skies catchment area without reasonable payment and we were able to facilitate a good situation for both the schools and Teilhard who is local and an international musician. It would not have been possible without BSIC financial support.
I have sent photos to all the school so that they can post them on their websites.
Pictures of Teilhard’s visits will be posted in some of the loos at the festival this year under the title “Blue Skies in the Community Granting Programme”.
Teilhard will also put have some pictures and comments on his website from this tour.
Susan Walker BSIC
Django’s Kitchen in the Schools 2023
Django’s Kitchen is a five person band, based in Kingston Ontario , that plays jazz music in the style of Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grapelli. In February and April of 2023 we were engaged by Blue Skies in the Community to perform a series of five elementary school concerts in communities north of Kingston. It was crazy fun.
We are not children’s entertainers ,nor do we play a style of music that elementary school learners might be familiar with. On the other hand ,three of us are retired teachers. We worked up a performance/demonstration that had lots of opportunities for children to interact with us, ask us questions and even try out the instruments.
We taught our audiences how to listen to jazz, to spot and appreciate the soloists, count us in, and sing in French. Many students earned their own ‘Django Moustache’ and EVERY student was given a complimentary thankyou guitar pick.
Over the five concerts we connected with approximately 800 children and school staff. It was hard work and challenging for the band to be on the road, lugging gear around, charming audiences, and playing well. It was VERY rewarding. Somehow we have created a slew of children, kindergarten to Grade 8 who seemed to ‘get it’ about our music. We autographed countless guitar picks and got cheered for a few times by kids in school yards as we drove away.
Elinor Rush, who was our liaison with Blue Skies did a superb job of prepping the schools, and setting up the gigs, and she was there for many of the performances, making sure Blue Skies got’s it’s money’s worth! I acted as the liaison between the band and the schools, always calling the Principal and administer ahead to confirm times, electrical and space requirements and suggest how to seat the kids – really close to us!
This was an all round successful project… extending our band’s reach into a
community of young learners, helping us stretch ourselves as entertainers and
educators, and also supporting Django’s Kitchen. We are using proceeds from these performances to help us attend Django in June, in Massachusetts. This is a five day intensive immersion into Gypsy Jazz for our band.
THANK YOU Blue Skies in the Community,
This was a great experience for us.
Andy Rush, Ray Desrosier, Ron Heidebrecht, Suzanne Becker and Gary Greer
A Letter from Jessica Wedden
Attending David Francey’s songwriting workshops at Granite Ridge Education Centre, sponsored by Blue Skies in the Community and Live Wire Music Series, was an immense privilege for me and many other students at my school. His techniques, stories, and humour around his songwriting experience was inspiring, educational, and allowed our inner songwriters to come to light without hesitation. When he worked with students one-on-one, I had the opportunity to share my songwriting ideas with him, and after he helped me, he asked about my involvement with music. David was so kind to ask for my contact information, and as a result, came to one of my performances with Jon McLurg in Perth. It was a pure joy to talk to him and see him again, and I couldn’t have been happier when he said he hoped to share the stage down the road.
A few months later, Kathryn Briggs, Terry Tufts, and Beth Tufts, who are mutual friends of David and I, were scheduled to back David at his Christmas Show in Almonte. They were all so thoughtful to ask me if I could be a special guest and join them in backing David on some of his songs. I loved rehearsing with them, and the show was beyond thrilling. I am so fortunate to have met David at his songwriting workshops which led to performing in his Christmas show, and now to Jon and I rehearsing with him for future shows, including his upcoming show in Kingston in the Live Wire Music Series! He is a musical hero to me and I couldn’t be more grateful to back someone as kind, humble, and accomplished as David.
Thank you very much to Al Rankin, Live Wire, Blue Skies in the Community and everyone else involved in giving students the privilege to meet and learn from incredible artists such as David Francey. My gratitude is immeasurable.
Granite Ridge Education Centre
What a way to start the week! A thrilling performance from a world class musician in our own beautiful KCVI auditorium. This kind of passion and dedication to a lifelong skill, such as music, is so well demonstrated by a performer like Mr. Pearson. He spoke to our students about his journey, and how hard work and resilience were the most important tools one could have for success. A real life example of lemons becoming lemonade!
Drummond Central Public School, September 22, 2017
Our first Forest Friday on Sept. 22 was a special full-day event! All sixty students received the opportunity to learn hoop-dance to enrich the music and dance curriculum in the outdoor classroom. The children were inspired to choreograph their own hoop-dance movement blending four different techniques which were associated with the four elements: earth, air, water, and fire. Thank you to ‘Blue Skies in the Community’ for their assistance in funding Meghan Robinson’s hoop-dance workshop (‘Wider Circles’) in this outdoor education enrichment program.
Clarendon Central Public School, October 6, 2017
On Friday October 6 the Celtic Rathscallions held a tin whistle and ukulele workshop at CCPS. Students also received some specific instruction on the chords and melody of the Trews song, Highway of Heroes. We are hoping to have some students confident enough to perform it in the community for our Remembrance Day ceremony! We are excited. Thank you, Blue Skies sponsors!
Snow Road Community Hall, October 6, 2017
Corin Raymond received a standing ovation from an appreciative audience of 72 adults on October 6.
BSIC helped to give us the security to plan and execute this event as it was the first one of its kind and we were not sure how well it would be attended.
Naismith Memorial School November, 2016
Our students were unbelievably thrilled to have Leo Brooks come to our school and teach them not only how to make a drum, but how to play it, too!! The children were engaged, learned new skills, and were so proud to have something that they could keep and play at home. In addition to Leo coming to our school, our students continued learning how to play their drums during their regular music classes, and then culminated with performing them for their parents and the school at large at our annual Holiday Sing-A- Long in December.
The impact the BSIC grant has had on our students is unmeasurable! Our music program began a tradition of creating these drums, and the grade fives look in envy at their grade six counterparts, itching for the day to be able to make them, as well. It was looking like we were not going to be able to afford to run the program this year, and BSIC is the reason why were!! The students have learned not only invaluable skills associated with their instrument, but they’ve also created something themselves they get to keep, and of which they are oh so proud. We could not be more thankful for having had the support of BSIC.
Prince Charles Public School, Verona
Just a quick word of thanks … for the Ariana Gillis workshop … Ariana had all of our students from Kindergarten to Grade Eight enthralled with her voice for nearly an hour. She delighted in answering their questions and was truly a wonderful role model for aspiring musicians in our school.
The support of Limestone, Blue Skies and Live Wire makes these experiences possible for our students.
With much appreciation on behalf of our students and staff,
Peter Mouncey, Principal
Prince Charles Public School
Storrington Public School, Battersea
Dear Blue Skies in the Community and Live Wire,
On behalf of our Grade 6, 7 and 8 students, I would like to say thank you very much for supporting the visit of singer-songwriter Kate Weekes who came to our school today. Her performance was a beautiful combination of storytelling and singing, with a focus on her experiences living in the Yukon.
The students were engaged in her performance and had many questions for her. We really appreciate being able to provide this opportunity for our students and wanted to let you know that we are grateful for your support.
Elizabeth Suriyuth, Principal
Storrington Public School
The Frontenac News
Meghan Robinson, a local artist and dancer, along with storyteller and musician Laurie Clark, gave kids at Land O’Lakes Public School (LOLPS) a fun and musical introduction to hula hooping on Monday morning.
Robinson, who lives in Clarendon, taught students the basics of “hooping” while Clark, who lives in McDonald’s Corners, played a wide range of instruments, creating different soundscapes for Robinson to interpret with her hula hoop.
The students really took to the lessons and were dancing around the gym in no time, spinning the hoops around their arms, hips, and necks and laughing out loud…
This hooping workshop was part of Blue Skies In The Community, an outreach program that has been fostering the arts, artists, and musicians in the area since 1988. Blue Skies In The Community has been responsible for Sheesham and Lotus, Craig Cardiff, and ukelele master James Hill visiting LOLPS in the past and performing for the kids.