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Supporting 20 talented students to study music

by Kampala Music School
Supporting 20 talented students to study music
Supporting 20 talented students to study music
Supporting 20 talented students to study music
Supporting 20 talented students to study music
Supporting 20 talented students to study music
Supporting 20 talented students to study music
Supporting 20 talented students to study music
Supporting 20 talented students to study music
Supporting 20 talented students to study music
Supporting 20 talented students to study music
Supporting 20 talented students to study music
Supporting 20 talented students to study music
Supporting 20 talented students to study music
Supporting 20 talented students to study music
Supporting 20 talented students to study music
Supporting 20 talented students to study music
Supporting 20 talented students to study music
Supporting 20 talented students to study music
Supporting 20 talented students to study music
Supporting 20 talented students to study music
Speciosa, Trombone player
Speciosa, Trombone player

Kampala Music School in 2020

it is almost difficult to imagine that KMS is beginning to operate in its 3rd decade since opening. it was an exciting time back then, with the furore of new millennium and with the hope to impact many people’s lives. This is something that has over the years been achieved and is something Kampala Music School wants to continue to do, with your help.

The beginning of this calendar year brings is also the 2nd term in the Academic cycle here at KMS. With students having done ABRSM exams in November, the turnaround for many to register and work towards the next grade was tough, but some were willing to take up the challenge and are working towards, in some cases, really high Graded exams in the coming sitting, slated for May to June. This determination to succeed is the focal point of this report.

John Paul has been on the programme now since 2017, where he was just starting out in various ways trying to find his way in music and in life. Having gone through a rough patch, he has been constant and committed since lessons resumed our classes this year January.  His teacher has been really happy with his work ethic and level of response. He is working towards Grade 7 in ABRSM, which will take him to a level higher than most guitarists in the country. He has been working hard and will showcase his talent in the upcoming showcase of Musical Garden Party this month.

Having set his mind to making music as a career, this opportunity afforded by the donors on this platform has meant that he has been able to have consistent lessons.  He has also achieved his Grade 5 Theory ABRSM and continues to grow also a teacher of basic beginning students, being mentored closely by the more advnance teachers at KMS.

Senfuka has been having lessons over the past 6 months and has shown good commitment and enthusiasm for learning. As a beginner without any skills in reading music, he gradually pulled himself though the basics by practicing regularly. Though the struggle at times to coordinate the movement of hands left hands particularly has been a real one for him. He’s learning to play from different positions on the keyboard in the keys of G and F. Looking ahead with continued practice with a focus in different areas, he should progress further from the introductory level to a higher graded level of playing. The determination is clearly there and we are hoping he will do very well.

Three new students have also joined the programme, Speciosa - Trombone, Ian - trumpet – and Daisy - Eb tuba are from areas scattered around the city, from Namuwongo to Kamwokya. The opportunity for lessons opened up late last year, and they were able to come to KMS and meet the GlobalGiving Visitor, they were finally excited when lessons began, and they have been taking part in these as well as Junior Orchestra, forming a good portion of the brass section.

Daisy with her Eflat Tuba
Daisy with her Eflat Tuba
Ian on his Trumpet
Ian on his Trumpet
Brass students in Class with Teacher Shafic
Brass students in Class with Teacher Shafic
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Mark
Mark

To all our supporters,

Once again we have entered the holiday season, and much has been happening at the music School in the lead to the end of the year including the rescheduled ABRSM music exams.  With the holiday programme coming up with lots of fun activities planned as Ugandan schools break off, we look back at the last few months:

Mark                                      

Mark is a 23-year old student who has just joined the bursary programme. When he started studying music, he started as a trombonist in his early primary years: “The school picked interest in my trombone playing skills and took me on, this helped me develop my talent and I have mastered it to an average level ….. A musical mentor who was also a saxophonist inspired me through his skill and passion for the saxophone to change from playing the trombone to the saxophone. At this point, I embarked on the journey of learning to play the saxophone and even though I had the passion and will to learn, I faced a number of challenges but the inadequacy of funds to pay for music lessons and buy an instrument of my own surpassed them all - I applied for a bursary from KMS because I could not afford the costs of taking saxophone lessons as I have no source of income”. He is hoping to enhance his music skills so as to reach a desirable level where he can also help other passionate saxophonists. 

He says: “Music is my talent that God gifted me with, so I love music because it is part of me. Music brings that harmony of joy in my living. The thing that excites me about music is that it is very transparent. Music to me is a talent, and talent is life and life is living. So, I live by this talent and I hope to achieve a lot as I am given a chance to grow my talent through the bursary programme.”

Mark’s teacher notes that he has a good sense of beat and fluency although still sometimes struggles with tempo changes. He has greatly improved at playing notated rhythms and is good at counting. His sight reading is fair, but we are working to continue improving his level of comfort in this. His theoretical knowledge is weak but he works hard to pay attention to music details on the paper such as dynamic markings (loud and soft). He can easily relate the music to the song title, which is a very important precursor to learning more about how to play expressively and beautifully. He is a keen jazz player taking part in the KMS Jazz group and improvising skills are good for him to develop his level of playing. He easily recovers from mistakes and has freedom of movement while performing. Mark definitely loves playing the saxophone and taking lessons and he practices music exercises hard, trying to achieve his assignment goals.

St. Mary Kevin

The project at St. Mary Kevin provides several individual and group lessons.  There are six group lessons and each group has 5 students who are selected from Primary 3. Each group consists of members with different learning strengths in order to help each other during practice. The eligible outstanding student is chosen by his/her fellow students to lead them and supervise their practices. Unfortunately, some students have dropped out of the music class for a variety of reasons, e.g. if they cannot pay their school fees and so no longer attend the school. Four groups of students were chosen to play at the Kampala Music School concert in order to help showcase  their practical skills outside of school. The fifth group has however struggled with some areas such as reading the notes and identifying music but they continue to try hard and we are finding more practice time for them so that they can improve.

Osbert is in group 3 and has been learning for two years. Whilst he has struggled a bit, he has been working hard to identify the notes at a slow pace, and his love for the violin has kept him going he is always very eager to learn and perfect his skills. 

Paniel is a motivated student from group 1. She always keeps time in her violin practice responds, her bow posture keeps improving and she is very sensitive to rhythm. She finds reading music notation fun and learns quickly. 

Francis has also studied the violin for two years. He responds well after rehearsals and he always wants to help others in his group during practice time. He can play most of the tunes that he has been taught and always pushes for more when in their group practices. Learning music notation is something he is keen to improve. 

Leyna

Leyna is a seven-year-old girl full of confidence and great ambition.  She did really well in the recently concluded East Africa’s Got Talent, ‘wowing’ many people with her singing hence she went all the way to the semi-final stage, even getting a Gold Buzzer along the way.  Her mother, having noticed a talent brought her to Kampala Music School for a few sessions to prepare her to go further in the show. However, funding quickly became an issue and she had to stop. As part of KMS’s mission we thought it a good idea to continue to nurture this young talent. She has a rich vocal ability, with a range from G3 to A5. She aspires to sing beyond this like the people she looks up to and considers her popular influences, but the challenge is bridging her falsetto to the chest voice. Her teacher has been introducing her to sight singing through solfège (scale, triads & intervals) learning rhythm symbols and counting. One of her greatest challenges is distance from home to the music school (She lives in Entebbe which is 42 kms from Kampala) and her parent's work schedules which make it difficult to attend. She is full of determination and also wants to start learning the piano to complement her singing.

Thank you all for your ongoing support to KMS and we wish you the best over the holiday season.

Mark during one of his practice sessions
Mark during one of his practice sessions
Group 5 at St Mary Kevin during a practice session
Group 5 at St Mary Kevin during a practice session
Leyna singing at the KMS Garden Party in Sep
Leyna singing at the KMS Garden Party in Sep
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All Concert Performers with ED& GG Field visitor
All Concert Performers with ED& GG Field visitor

GLOBALGIVING REPORT AUGUST  2019

Greetings from Kampala Music School. We would also like to thank the donors who gave on the and July Bonus Day and raised $1,803.9 which will go towards the project. The funds raised on that day were matched by GlobalGiving to make it collectively and even more substantive contribution. We certainly hope that our donors can participate in more events like this so that each coin may go further.

This recent period has been a busy time where KMS is concerned with a visit from the GlobalGiving field Visitor Leena El Seed. We had most of the beneficiaries gather together for Leena to visit with and spend time with. This ended with a beautiful concert.

Performing in that concert was John Paul, the Students of St Mary Kevin and the Brass players who recently joined the programmes namely Allan, Bruce, Emmanuel, Disan playing Tenor Horns, Trumpet and Euphonium respectively played some solo pieces and some ensemble pieces it was a wonderful celebration, and some pictures can be seen below.

John Paul

His lessons have been moving on steadily as he continues preparation for his forthcoming ABRSM Grade 7 exam that will happen in about two months’ time. He is playing his pieces really well, where articulation, use of performance directions, dynamics and general piece interpretation comes easily. As such these two of his pieces are in very good shape and he is working hard to improve his sight reading with good results so far. He is a result-oriented Guitar student with high potential. He shows a high interest in learning more during lessons and wants to understand everything in great detail.

However, John Paul has had personal issues that have affected the full potential of his progress in his lessons in recent times. He is working to resolve this situation.

The Quartet of Allan, Bruce, Emma, and Disan, already shown in the picture are progressing well. St Mary Kevin will be resuming their final term of the school year after the holiday. They are highly enthused, and so are we at KMS as we can now expand the number of instruments they have available to work on and practice.

Many more possibilities are opening up with the new funds since given and we would like to now and we look forward to bringing more students into the fold.

John P performing ,SMK students looking on.
John P performing ,SMK students looking on.
St Mary Kevin Students in concert
St Mary Kevin Students in concert
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Allan
Allan

To all our supporters,

We bring you some news from the beneficiaries of the programme. We have had a few new entrants onto the programme.

 

Allan is a young man who loves music, and plays the Tenor Horn in the Brass band he belongs to, loving music through being able to perform at various functions. As part of the M-LISADA project, he has had music around him for a while, and wanted very much to advance himself and get certificates and progress in Theory and in practical. He is hoping to get distinctions in the upcoming exams. In his spare time he loves to play Basketball.

Allan is progressing well on the tenor horn music and is working towards his exams.

 

Bruce (Tenor Horn)who plays the E flat Horn shared his story with us;

“I remember, M-LISADAband came to school one day, and all the students were rushing to welcome them and I wanted to be part of this group. So I went and approached the band director (Segawa Bosco), and told him that I would also like to learn. Fortunately, he allowed me to try out the trumpet and I was able to make a sound out of it, so he confirmed me that I could be able to play. He told me to come to the office if M-LISADA and I was admitted and I managed to get a chance to be paid my fees since my mum was unable to pay anymore, my father having passed away earlier.

I finally specialised in playing the E- flat horn which am still currently playing. What makes me want to study music further is because I want to become a great music teacher teaching in good schools like Kampala Music School and many more. I also want to reach out to many disadvantaged children in Uganda through teaching them music freely.”

Bruce has improved greatly on the tenor horn and works diligently in his practice of technique and tonal work. He also recently played in a concert with the Kampala Symphony Orchestra, where he was a very capable 3rdHorn.

 

Disan. (Euphonium) is an 18-year old young man from Nsambya, who is a former street boy, who had no parents to look after him. He joined M-LISADAwhere he was introduced to music, and he now sees a future ahead of him, with the possibility of a career ahead of him. As a musician, he sees this as an opportunity to extend his musical talent to use music to transform the lives of children and other people in Africa. He was inspired largely by the how music connected people’s lives and he wants to continue to pursue music.

“I would like to achieve my skills in conducting and teaching and other credentials like certificates, degree, diploma, PHD, Masters and more.”

Disan is steadily improving and progressing well in his technical studies and is a promising student. 

 

Emmanuel (Trumpet)

He plays in the M-LISADA  senior band and has also been playing with The Kampala Symphony Orchestra where he plays the Bb-Trumpet and Soprano cornet as principal instruments. In March he sat his Grade 5 ABRSM Theory exam and he achieved 82%, a merit. Emmanuel shares more of his story below; 

“I started music in 2008, I grew up in a family of 8 and am the 3rd, where my Dad was a musician in the police band and so I enjoyed always watching the band practicing every morning. I asked Dad if I could try to learn too, "I will teach you soon", he replied. From then I started waiting day to day. One day as I was home in the barracks, there was a marching band of young boys marching through and I was surprised young people of my age playing instruments while marching, I followed up to the venue! I met one of the players he was called Alex, I asked him the way I could join them and also requested to try out the trumpet as they were at rest, he let me try and I tried to force out sound from it, hahaa it wasn't the perfect sound but when I got out the sound, I thought in my mind that I have learnt so am ready to join. I went back home, told Dad that I have tried the trumpet and I can play it. He then went to their band store and signed out the instrument and so I tried this time but the sound wasn't the same so I got a bit disappointed. But that wasn't the end, he said "Emma its okay you are going to learn it", I was happy, so we started the practice, it was harsh but was the best for me to learn quickly. I did daily practice even when he wasn't around so I was just reviewing! That's how I started the career and in a year it became a talent as I got much interest in music. He took me to join a band called M-LISADA when I met new friends and continued with the music, and through music that I got sponsorship throughout my primary and high school level last year 2018. 

What inspires me every day to continue with my music and trumpet are their successful players like the late  Hugh Masekela from South-Africa, Louis Armstrong, Rex Richardson from America and Alison Balsom OBE from U.K who is a lady, so whenever I listen to her recordings like the Haydn Concerto in Eb, she sounds nice trumpet so I also practice hard to see that I play like her. She is a great trumpet player.”

Thanks for reading my story, well that's how I started music and joined the band and also what inspired me.”

Emma has great enthusiasm in learning more about different rythms, whole tone scales, breath controls and is working on Hadyn’s concerto in Eb. He is working hard towards doing Grade V ABRSM theory exams next year. 

 

St. Mary Kevin (Violin Groups of 5)

This term has ended well. The violin classes started on February 21stwith weekly group classes taught by Samuel Kikomeko. The term started with great momentum, with groups of 5, as he introduced the learning objectives for the term. These were willingly welcomed by the students with an emphasis on maximum discipline, proper instrumental keeping and regular practice.

One of the groups was a new group, made of members from P.3. The four groups are pictured below in class. The term ended with a small ensemble that performed and this led to inspiration of other pupils in instrumental lesson.

Bruce
Bruce
Disan
Disan
Emmanuel
Emmanuel
Teacher Godfrey with the Brass Students
Teacher Godfrey with the Brass Students
Teaching at St Mary Kevin (1)
Teaching at St Mary Kevin (1)
Teaching at St Mary Kevin (2)
Teaching at St Mary Kevin (2)
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A student at St Mary Kevin School
A student at St Mary Kevin School

To all our supporters,

We bring you some news from the beneficiaries of the programme

St Mary Kevin School

Recent donations have meant that some more persons could be put onto the scheme at St. Mary Kevin School. The students out at St. Mary Kevin have already been a part of the KMS family, and traditionally been funded by Strings for Uganda, and another donor, who sadly has not been able to continue. However to enable the students at St Mary Kevin to be able to continue they are now supported through our Global Giving Campaign. The 27 students who have been studying and learning with us are a delight. 

This programme started in 2013 has seen quite a few students go through its ranks. Initially financed by Strings for Uganda and the Sainsbury Charitable trust, recent contributions by Rachel Ellis in a fundraising concert have enabled the programme to expand to 6 groups of 5 taught together in group sessions by Sam Kikomeko. The school as a whole is very supportive of music programmes, and have other initiatives as well, but this is one they venture through KMS.

The students, mostly the young beginners, have a great and positive attitude towards the class. There is a high enthusiasm level from the Primary three students they are eager and find it fun and educative to have music included in their daily routine and weekend hence love to practice

Some of the challenges that the programme has had is that some of students have had to drop out because they live far away from the school, and therefore are unable to be there for practice or stay longer should the programme end up being longer as it is at times. Sickness at times makes lesson attendance irregular. They are also challenged at times for other needs, many of which the school works hand in hand with the community to fulfil including clean water, personal hygiene. The school works hard to keep the cost of school fees low but even then, some students still struggle. 

Gerson

Gerson continues to work towards attaining growth in performance as he is planning to sit for his DipABRSM in performance in Guitar next year, to become Uganda’s first ever holder of this Diploma come that time. He hopes that he will be able to get the funds in the near future and hopes to go to Nairobi and USA to meet different Classical Guitar specialists, some of whom have already expressed a willing to give him a hand to improve. Gerson would love to, and strives towards, sensitising Ugandan and African youth and adults towards living a purposeful life using their musical talents

John Paul

Has been a great energy and source as he prepares for his Grade 7 Guitar ABRSM practical exams. He is almost on top of his Grade 7 repertoire and is getting there for all his other requirements for the grade. Aural training is still a concern for him but that is coming into place

John Paul continues to be committed to his guitar classes attending them regularly. He Has also been exploring pentatonic scales which has opened him up to be able to join in with the KMS Jazz group, a fertile training ground for the development of music.

John Paul is so enthusiastic to learn more and is starting to explore the worlds of cello planning to also do exams and Grade 2 Cello. He is continuously appreciative of the generosity of the givers who continue to give to this, which has been really life changing and continues to transform him from the ghetto from where he is.

THANK YOU!

We thank all those who have been giving to the programme already, and for those who have been able to give a standing regular donation. The regular donations mean for us that we can be sure that projects especially the last mentioned, can keep running without worry, and we hope more can give in this way.

A group session at St Mary Kevin School
A group session at St Mary Kevin School
Sam teaching a student at St Mary Kevin School
Sam teaching a student at St Mary Kevin School
Gerson
Gerson
John Paul playing the cello
John Paul playing the cello
John Paul practising the guitar
John Paul practising the guitar
John Paul at home
John Paul at home
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Organization Information

Kampala Music School

Location: Kampala - Uganda
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @KampalaMusicScl
Project Leader:
Julia Downing
Prof
Kampala, Uganda
$10,007 raised of $20,000 goal
 
103 donations
$9,993 to go
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