On Monday 6th February, a group of Year 10,11 and 12 music students attended Opera North’s matinee performance of ‘The Cunning Little Vixen’ by Czech composer Janáček. This is a particularly unusual opera, on one level a children’s fairytale detailing the story of a young vixen who goes on a journey through the forest, encountering many woodland creatures on her way. Yet on another level, the opera is an exploration of themes of cyclical renewal in nature, social dynamism and regret.
Beforehand, Music Teacher Mr Meredith had provided students with listening notes for the folk-infused melodies, and discussed with them the broad themes of the opera. Hence, the group approached the event with intellectual curiosity and were rewarded with a rich understanding and appreciation for the nuances of the performance. The students left the performance invigorated by the exceptional singing and playing from the performers, and this enthusiasm will no doubt be channelled into their future music lessons.
Mr. N Meredith