To say that this was a life-changing experience is an understatement! Over the eight weeks of travelling (which I did over a period of six months during the school holidays) I met many wonderful musicians, heard so much fantastic music and had my eyes opened as to ways of life and culture in other countries. For example, the photo above was taken at a nursery in a squatter's camp just outside Pretoria. The building for the nursery was, just like the rest of the camp, more like a shed than anything else (for more photos see below). The children (here seen singing Nkosi Sikelel) and their nursery teacher Elizabeth were, however, full of smiles, laughter and optimism. The adventure (for it was certainly that) continues to live with me today, and has both informed and confirmed all of my subsequent work.
The Winston Churchill Travelling Fellowships are a relatively unknown and unsung institution. About 100 Fellowships are awarded each year with the aim that Fellows will 'bring back knowledge and best practice for the benefit of others in their UK professions and communities'. Each year a different range of categories is highlighted with music education making a regular appearance. It has appeared once again this year and, although applications close in just over two weeks time, there is still time to put something together if I have whetted your appetite!
Click here for full information.
I will be writing more about my Fellowship in the future but, if you can't wait or just want to find out a little more before applying yourself, here is a link to the search page. You can either search by author (it was written in my maiden name Chappell) or the phrase Making Musicians.
If you have any questions about applying for a Fellowship please do get in touch and I will do my best to help - good luck!