Miss S. Kerr

Miss S. Kerr. M.A. Cert. Ed. A.L.C.M.

I offer recorder tuition to the Ulster College of Music’s Saturday morning classes (P.3 – 4 children) and also to keen older students who wish to further develop their technique and who make the recorder(s) their woodwind instrument of choice. These students can progress from descant to treble recorder and other instruments of the “recorder family” and become aware of the potential of this uniquely beautiful instrument with its full range of tone colours and its vast historic and modern repertoire.

After qualifying as a teacher (where Music was one of my Distinction subjects), I worked as a classroom teacher for many years and subsequently became schools’ Music Co-ordinator developing and delivering the curriculum to a wide age range. During that time I became aware that whilst the descant recorder “was easy to make a noise on”, playing it well required a lot more attention and skill! The image of the recorder can suffer if it is poorly taught with little or no thought been given to the techniques essential for producing good tone, correct intonation and musicality.

Good hand positions, posture, breathing and articulation are very important in the early stages when habits are being formed. I am very privileged to have had the benefit of learning first- hand from outstanding recorder composer/teachers Edgar Hunt and Brian Bonsor and I am also inspired and refreshed annually in recorder summer schools held by their present day counterparts.

The Saturday morning children respond well to the friendly, but thorough initiation into the disciplines involved in learning an instrument. Musical notation is introduced right from the beginning and classes are small with the work carefully tailored to the individual’s needs.

From Recorder, children may proceed to study another instrument in the College, or they may continue to study and develop their recorder technique if that is their interest and choice. Either way, we will support them.

I firmly believe that encouragement is one of our most precious gifts to others as a teacher. It is never to be underestimated as it can touch deeply and personally and its effects can truly last a lifetime.