Turn on, tune in, listen up

2nd March 2007 at 00:00
Who went?

Paul Harrison, music teacher at Runshaw College, near Preston.

What course?

A placement with the BBC Philharmonic orchestra in Manchester.

What did it do?

The Philharmonic organises professional development for music teachers in primary or secondary schools. It talks to you about your interests and what you want to get out of it, then arranges suitable activities.

Why go?

I'm teaching music technology A-level and was keen to find out what that side of the music industry is like.

Message, motto or mantra?

It's helpful for teachers to see professionals at work.

Handouts or hands-on?

I had three sessions alongside the BBC's sound engineer. We were working on a CD recording, and also on a live Radio 3 broadcast. I watched, I helped out, and I talked with him about his work. They arranged two more sessions, but I couldn't go because they clashed with an inspection visit at school.

Something I liked

It was tailored to my needs. And it was free.

Something I learnt Technology is there to serve the music business, but the music always comes first. Sound engineers are not just pressing buttons, they are making important musical decisions.

Has it made a difference?

Not greatly. I haven't changed what I do, but it's reassured me that I'm on the right lines.

The verdict?

Any music teacher would love this kind of placement. You can watch rehearsals, discuss conducting techniques, or shadow a musician. It's a great gig Interview by Steven Hastings

Coming soon?

Placements are limited and last from one to five days. Anyone interested should email philharmonic@bbc.co.uk

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