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Games in the Park - 26 May 2012

Video from the day

Images from the day - slideshow

To celebrate the Silver Jubilee of the annual Beverley & East Riding Early Music Festival in 2012, there was a free day songs and musical games for all the family at Toll Gavel United Church in Beverley on Saturday 26th May.

The sun shone all day and local people enjoyed taking part in and watching the array of different activities.

Starting on the streets, flash mob dancers from Hull City Council's Youth Centres joined community musician Donna Smith for a high-energy body percussion piece, which led the crowds into the church. They were welcomed in by local hurdy-gurdy play Quentin Budworth who helped to set the scene for the Early Music Festival as well.

Young children gathered to sing clapping songs and play circle games with musicians Sam Dunkley and Donna Smith. There were also skipping songs and all had a go, including the adults! As a special treat, the onlookers were joined by singer Vivien Ellis and violinist Giles Lewin, of the early music group Alva. Vivien taught the youngsters 'An Acre of Land', an old traditional song from Beverley, collected by the Yorkshire Garland Group, which gathers local songs from around Yorkshire.

Donna Smith commented: "The flashmobs went really well, we got a great response from the onlookers and a very good crowd for the songs and games sessions which provided a good opportunity to teach some of the younger members of the crowd the art of skipping! Mums, grans and kids all joined in so there was a very good inter-generational response and by taking an incremental approach to the songs, clapping and skipping games everyone had 'got it' by the end - so smiles all round!"

Back in the streets the participants of the recorder workshop which took place at the Guildhall, under the expert guidance of musician Piers Adams, followed their leader in a 'Pied Piper style' procession through the streets of Beverley to entice shoppers to their mini-concert. Even a Cuban street band of buskers stopped playing for the recorder procession and clapped enthusiastically! The musicians gave a highly polished performance of dance and contemporary music - some of which was composed by a local composer. Piers Adams commented: " The workshop group was pretty advanced and we seemed to 'hit' the right mid range so that everyone was able to participate fully. It was great to see a grandmother and five-year old grandson play side by side and one student had travelled all the way from Dundee especially for the event!"

Next to perform was Castaway Goole Accessible Music Theatre's Dance Group. This organisation provides performing, leisure and training opportunities for adults and young people with learning and physical disabilities. Under the direction of Anna Webb, they performed their own piece called 'Meeting Place' inspired by the choreographer Pina Bausch. Carol Hodson, one of the directors of Castaway Goole, explained: "The group put their own interpretation on the piece and their own personalities and life experiences shone through."

The final performance of the day was given by the East Riding Youth Dance County Company, featuring six of the region's most talented young dancers, working in a range of contemporary and street dance styles. The piece they performed was an Urban Street dance, which was developed from an initial workshop with renowned commercial street dancer Julius Ebreo. As well as performing, they ran a mini workshop for the Castaway Goole dancers.

Delma Tomlin, Director of the Beverley & East Riding Early Music Festival, said it had been a fantastic event and a wonderful way to celebrate such an important Cultural Festival. She added: "It was great to see so many people turn up from babies to grandparents, enjoying their music-making together.

"This event not only celebrated the Festival's Jubilee but also the forthcoming excitement of the Cultural Olympics. The Games we have all played and loved share remarkable connections with cultures around the world and, like music, have a unifying effect on us all."

This event was part Games in the Park, a New World event and part of imove, a cultural Olympiad Programme in Yorkshire. New Worlds is a partnership between the NCEM, York; Alchemy, Leeds; Bradford's Department of Culture, Tourism and Sport; Harewood House, Leeds; National Media Museum, Bradford and the Northern School of Contemporary Dance, Leeds. It was also supported by Music4U - the Humber Region Youth Music Action Zone, which is co-ordinated by the NCEM working in partnership with East Riding, Hull, North Lincolnshire and North East Lincolnshire Councils.

You can download and share the poster below:
Games for all the family Poster Final.pdf

*A Song for Beverley
Games in the Park will feature opportunities to learn and take part in performances of An Acre of Land, a traditional song from the East Riding. The song is very simple, and everyone, even the least experienced singer, will be able to join in. If you wish to learn the song in advance, you can listen to, or download the melody, the harmonies and the sheet music below.

Download the Song for Beverley below and join in the fun!
An Acre of Land.pdf

Listen to the melody and melody with harmonies using the players below.
(To download the audio 'right click' on 'Download' and select 'Save Target As' or Save Link As' to save files to your computer.)

The melody - Download

First harmony - Download

Second harmony - Download

The melody with harmonies - Download

An Acre of Land was collected and documented by the Yorkshire Garland Group, and is one of many songs featured on the Yorkshire Garland's website. It is used here in accordance with Yorkshire Garland's terms and conditions.

The Musical Activities and Games for All event is part of Games in the Park 2012 , which is a New Worlds project and part of imove, a Cultural Olympiad Programme in Yorkshire. New Worlds is a partnership between Alchemy, Leeds; Bradford's Department of Culture, Tourism and Sport; Harewood House, Leeds; National Centre for Early Music, York; National Media Museum, Bradford, and the Northern School of Contemporary Dance, Leeds. Games in the Park has been conceived, brokered and curated by Alchemy.