Deaf percussionist Evelyn Glennie inspires at West Lavington

Dame Evelyn Glennie and a group of Dauntsey’s School pupils

Dame Evelyn Glennie and a group of Dauntsey’s School pupils

First published in News

Scottish percussionist and composer Dame Evelyn Glennie captivated an audience of more than 600 at Dauntsey’s School, West Lavington, with an exploration of percussion, sound and performance.

A range of percussion instruments were used to illustrate her ideas, including a snare drum, marimba, waterphone, temple blocks and a halo.

Dame Evelyn, who has been deaf since the age of 12, always plays in bare feet so she can feel the music vibrating through the floor. She performed at the London Olympics opening ceremony and is the first person in musical history to create and sustain a full-time career as a solo percussionist.

In her performance at Dauntsey’s, she suggested how to explore sound, without being constrained by convention.

Dame Evelyn has a collection of more than 2,000 percussion instruments and said when she finds a new one she always experiments with it to determine its personality before looking at the ‘instruction manual’.

Ben Gudgeon, director of music at Dauntsey’s, said: “This was a wonderful opportunity for pupils and the community to join a world-class percussionist on an amazing journey of sound.

“Dame Evelyn was extremely generous with her time, having been interviewed by pupils earlier in the day.

“Over half of our pupils play a musical instrument and many of us went away inspired by her ideas.”

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