Everyone in Scottish education will now be aware of the four capacities of A Curriculum for Excellence. The thing is barely off the ground yet but today, having seen it in action, I felt the need for a fifth – Ambassadors.
I was invited by Erika MacLaughlan, DHT of Musselburgh Burgh PS, to bring a couple of guitarists from Wallyford PS to provide a support act for the Krakow Youth Jazz Band who were visiting their school. The KYJB comprised students and staff from Krakowska Szko?a Jazzu i Muzyki Rozrywkowej (Krakow School of Jazz and Contemporary Music).
Being a hands across the sea event, the pupils, Andrew & Connor, bravely agreed to bi-lingual introductions and took turns at announcing and translating in Polish and English. They played a morning and afternoon concert to pupils from Burgh, Wallyford, Pinkie, Campie & Stoneyhill and also some Polish pupils from Musselburgh Grammar School. I think it’s not stretching things to say that the boys were great ambassadors for their school, their town and their country. They really enjoyed being around the band. It was a stroke of luck that their guitarist, Arek, was a live wire, a virtuoso player and a friendly guy.
I received a gift from Poland as a gesture of thanks from the band and it was nice to be able to offer them something in return – mp3 recordings of this afternoon’s concert which I have emailed to the Dyrektor of the Krakowska Szko?a, Grzegorz Motyka – another guitarist! I hope the recordings will bring back memories of their trip to Scotland. Unfortunately there was no-one to hand to record Connor & Andrew but you can hear them here.
Before returning to Krakow, the band will making an appearance at The Jazz Bar, Chambers St., Edinburgh, this Sunday at 3.00. This event is free of charge and I’d recommend anyone keen on jazz to get along if they can. Accompanied 14-18 yr old young people are welcome. Here’s a little taster of what you can expect: Sample