Students blow their own trumpets

St Brigids Primary School in Kyogle enjoyed their very first Eisteddfod and won the $50 encouragement award.

Lismore City Hall was alive with the sound of music last week when students from local primary schools performed at the 94th Lismore Musical Festival Societys Eisteddfod.

Budding musicians and singers from Lismore, Alstonville, Ballina, Coraki, Casino, Kyogle, Woodburn and Byron Bay were given the chance to perform live on stage, receive feedback from highly qualified adjudicators and replace fluttery nerves with self-confidence.

The performances are not about brilliance but about giving the children a chance to perform in front of an audience, said Val Axtens, who has seen her fair share of budding musical talent in her 24 years as secretary. When you hear the sounds that these young children can produce from their instruments, its hard to believe they are so young. The talent just blows me away, as does the dedication of the teachers.

Musicians from Alstonville Public School scooped the band awards, winning three of the four sections and taking out the Band Day Trophy. Adjudicator Melissa Philp said she was impressed with the high standard from Alstonvilles four bands, but added that everyone deserved praise for their efforts.

Particularly with the small schools, it is very difficult for the teachers to put together ensembles, said Melissa, who is a highly experienced Eisteddfod adjudicator, musician and band director. They might have one triangle, a recorder and three violins and somehow they have to put them together and make music.

The Eisteddfod continues throughout September with performances in spoken word, woodwind, string, brass, piano, vocal and dance. For more information or programs phone Val Axtens on 6621 6015. Keep an eye on The Echo for upcoming performance dates.

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