An Invitation to Primary Schools to Perform ‘As Free As A Bird’ as part of the Platforma Festival 2017
By Caroline Hoile.
I write songs and musical plays for primary and early years education which many schools throughout the UK and around the world perform every year. They’re mostly published by Grumpy Sheep Music.
Having been increasingly frustrated about the lack of media coverage about the plight of refugees and the hazardous journeys they are forced to take to try and reach safety, I decided to write a musical for primary schools about the experience of people forced to flee their homes, to raise awareness amongst children – and their audiences.
The musical is called ‘As Free As A Bird.’ Using animal characters, it’s engagingly written in a way that children will absorb and understand, and throughout the musical the animals encounter some of the experiences that people seeking refuge face. There’s lots of catchy songs for children to sing and opportunities to dance, too – and the story does have a happy ending! It’s been trialled in several local schools in Newcastle with very positive feedback.
The Invitation to schools
I’m inviting primary schools in the North East and throughout the UK to perform ‘As Free As A Bird’ in their own time – but during the Platforma Festival – to help make a huge countrywide musical splash in support of refugees. It would be so wonderful to get as many schools as possible around the country involved!
For your school to perform ‘As Free As A Bird’ in the Platforma Festival simply…
Get in touch to say you’d like to be involved – a welcome pack will be sent to you. Choose convenient performance date(s) during the Platforma Festival, 19-31 October (before or after is fine too if half term gets in the way!) Let us know when you will be performing – we’ll add you to our list of performances. Spread the word and invite other schools to perform too!
Performing ‘As Free As A Bird’ will also count as a practical action towards becoming a School of Sanctuary. The musical is very adaptable and can be performed by schools large and small – with any number of children taking part. You can hear excerpts of all the songs and find out more about it here. The book and CD cost £25.50 but schools performing for the Platforma Festival will be sent a special discount code for the musical in their welcome pack when they get in touch.
As a taster for the Platforma Festival, your school might also like to showcase an extract of ‘As Free As A Bird’ or sing some of the songs from it for Refugee Week this year. One of the songs from the musical, ‘One World to Share,’ was released for Refugee Week 2016. Here’s an excerpt of it, sung by St. Teresa’s primary school in Newcastle, during a Refugee Week assembly last year. It’s a thoughtful yet uplifting song to sing in your school to celebrate Refugee Week, or to raise awareness about refugees at any time.
Please feel free get in touch if you’d like any further information.