Resonance has hosted a Dudley Performing Arts summer school for local primary and secondary pupils.
Around 85 pupils from schools in the Dudley borough took part in the summer school at Cable Plaza.
The aim was to make up for some of the schooling they had missed during the lockdown period, and to give them an extra bit of support before returning to their classrooms next term.
Groups of primary school children spent a day at a time learning African drumming and Samba, whilst a smaller group of secondary-age students were in a different part of the campus, transforming themselves into rock musicians in the space of five days.
‘Rock band in a week’ was the theme for the older children, who spent the first day getting to grips with the different instruments and learning the basics.
The rest of the week was spent forming a band, practising a piece and putting on a performance, which was recorded for posterity.
The sessions were run by a team from Resonance and DPA, along with teaching and safeguarding staff from the local schools.
“It’s been a great experience for the kids,” said Rick Benton, Resonance chief executive.
“All the kit is waiting for the first cohort of students joining us at the start of the autumn term, and it was brilliant to see the younger ones so enthused by the experience of playing and recording their own music.
“Our campus is a big place and there was plenty of recording, rehearsal and practice space for the two age groups to do their own thing safely in their own space. All the instruments were sanitised for every session.”
Chris Jones, head of Dudley Performing Arts, said, “It’s not often school-age children get to practise music in such a well-equipped environment and with such great acoustics.
“Resonance is a real asset to the cultural life of Dudley and the Black Country.”
Following their time at Resonance, the children moved on to start a second week of activities at the Black Country Living Museum.
“Dudley schoolkids, just like those in the rest of the country, have missed out on so much during lockdown,” added Chris Jones.
“Many have only been able to focus on the key subjects – if any at all – so it’s brilliant for them to be able to experience making music too, which is such a joyous and life-affirming thing to do.”