Folk Workshop with Prof. Keegan-Phipps

15th March 2023

The music department at our school had a special guest today, and we were thrilled to welcome Professor Simon Keegan Phipps. Professor Keegan-Phipps is the Head of Music at the University of Sheffield and is a specialist in folk music. For students in Years 7-9, this was an incredible opportunity to learn from a renowned expert in the field. The students who are part of the Folk Group had an especially great time working alongside Professor Keegan-Phipps. 

During the session, the group focused on two pieces of music, St. Anne’s reel and The Teetotaller’s reel, both traditional Irish folk reels. Following the guidance of Professor Keegan-Phipps, the students were able to learn new techniques and styles, mainly to get creative and ‘swing’ the notes rather than sticking to the strict sheet notes. Students also gained a deeper understanding of the history and cultural significance of the pieces they were playing. 

As the group is preparing for an upcoming performance later this term, Professor Keegan-Phipps provided the students with some excellent advice and tips on how to get the most out of their performance and to get everybody in the audience up and dancing! The students are now better equipped to put on an outstanding show, and they are excited to showcase their newfound skills. 

Overall, the visit from Professor Keegan Phipps was a fantastic experience for everyone involved. The students had the chance to learn from an expert in their field, and they gained a greater appreciation for the music they were playing. We are grateful for the opportunity to learn from such an accomplished musician, and we hope to welcome him back again soon.

Mrs K Bentham

Acting Director of Music

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