By: Zoe Blickenderfer, Premier ChoirZoe has been in BCC for 5 years. She is 17 years old.
On our tenth day of tour, after packing and eating breakfast at the hotel we left Birmingham and headed to London.
After being on the bus for a couple of hours we arrived at Uxbridge High School in West London. We were there as part of a collaboration with Teach First (which is a lot like Teach for America) and we got to split up into groups to have a sort of exchange with the kids (the name high school might bring images of teenagers, but we worked with their youngest students ages 11 and 12). We split up into three groups: PC had two groups of girls, and Young Men’s had all of the boys. In my group, after introducing ourselves, we decided to teach them We Are Together, which is a simple, but very rewarding and heartwarming song. Some girls even joined Allana on the solo part. We then taught them a song that many of them already knew: Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep.” However, when we worked with Depot Arts in Glasgow earlier on the trip we learned other parts to make the song even better! After our teaching session we went back into the large room that we started in and shared with the other groups. First, the boys started off with a beautiful rendition of Meguru, and then the two groups of girls sang We Are Together. Finally, everybody jumped in for Rolling in the Deep. It was a really great experience to get to teach music, and really gave me an insight into how difficult it must be for music teachers!
After we said goodbye to Uxbridge High, we ate our lunches on the bus as we headed to the BBC studios to see a rehearsal of the BBC singers! Not only was it wonderful that we got to see them rehearse, but we got such a warm welcome! Their producer was very kind and even gave us some BBC pencils and postcards! The rehearsal was exceptional, and their professionalism and talent was phenomenal and definitely inspiring for many of us, as it gave us a glimpse into what it would be like to be a professional choral singer. We left on a high note, and were off to our final stop of the day, St. Paul’s Girls’ School, to meet our host families. Getting to have host families is such a great opportunity, especially in a foreign country, because it really allows us to be immersed in the other culture (in this case British culture) to a whole different level than if we were staying in a hotel. Unfortunately, there were not enough hosts for everybody, so a lot of the Young Men had to stay in nearby hotels. All in all it was a very fun and exciting day!!!