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News Feature: Remix for Youth Prom

Our very own Ms Nelson shares an inspirational story that led to her being selected as a presenter for the Remix for Youth Prom at the Royal Albert Hall. A massive congratulations to from all of us here at The Bark for your wonderful achievement. It's such an an spectacular achievement!

Remix for Youth Prom

By Ms Nelson

On Wednesday 3rd November, I and two other young people alongside Remel London presented Music for Youths Remix Prom 2021 at the Royal Albert Hall. The experience was mental! Being on stage in that manner was such a shock to the system. As a musician, I am only ever on stage playing my instrument with the orchestra, so I am instantly hidden by other musicians, and we are always viewed as one organism creating wonderful music for the audience. This was an entirely new experience for me!

To understand how this journey started, you have to rewind to September 13th 2021. I received an email from the senior instrumental leader at my music academy asking if I wanted to be nominated to present in front of thousands of people for the event. I thought about it for two seconds and replied to the teacher about four days later with a ‘yes’.

I very much told myself, “No chance,” because there must have been many nominees. Funnily enough, I was contacted four days after by the Music For Youth (MFY) team asking me to do an initial interview. I told myself, “Alright then, lets gooo!”

I wondered why MFY chose me. I contacted the senior instrumental leader at my music academy and asked her the same thing. Apparently, she had sent them YouTube videos of my dancing and improvisation on the oboe and a third video of me explaining my performances. I had a lot of pride after hearing that. It made me feel good to know that I was recognised for being different.

In my initial interview on Friday 1st October, I met two of the MFY team. At first, I was very much silent and spoke when necessary. But as the interview progressed, I became more comfortable and confident. They told me about the YouTube videos that they saw and hearing them describing my music in their words was such a good feeling.

What I will say at this point though is that I didn’t fully realise the magnitude of this event. I heard “Royal Albert Hall” and said “Ok” because the excitement and the vastness of what I was going to be a part of hadn’t hit me. As a matter of fact, I don’t think it really did until I was up on stage.

My two co-presenters were Phoebe Jarvis, who plays the Clarinet and Saxophone and is currently studying at Guildford School of music and acting, and Lewis Greaves, who plays the bass guitar and has recently started to teach himself the drums.

In our second group session that was most likely a week and a half later, we met the award-winning TV presenter Remel London who was going to present with us. Hearing about her journey so far to her current position in life was very inspiring. I felt as if I could connect with a lot of what she said, and I feel as if I am at that stage now in my life.

The event itself was amazing and mind blowing. The fact that we had put this show together in roughly five weeks was insane. The way everything was handled on the night was very professional and done with finesse. I feel as though my speeches throughout all my cues inspired people to do better. The dialogue and connection between all the presenters was very natural and could be felt by the audience.

For me, the way which the audience reacted to the things I said made me feel proud in my ability to connect with them and this was not as daunting as I thought it would be. At one point, I was speaking, and I was not even using my cue cards. At another, I looked using the corner of my eye and could see that we were being told to stall. We didn’t rehearse this, but it worked anyway the audience didn’t seem to notice, they loved it!

The best part for me was running around during the second half of the show towards the end trying to get to the next cue in time. This was quite funny because whilst we were running around, the audience had no idea and all we could hear was a load of cheering. We were all running on adrenaline which wore off once I realised that I needed to be at work in twelve hours. But the experience itself made it all totally worth it!

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