"Abain / Aboon" [Ab–ain / Ab-oon] Meaning: Above
It all began at Easter 2010 when we invited the Ulster-Scots Agency to come in to our school and provide our Year 10 pupils with a one day ‘taster’ workshop.
This was a very successful and positive day where pupils enjoyed listening to the different instruments and were able to participate in a range of activities provided by the Agency. This included Lambeg Drum, Fife, Tin Whistle, Fiddle and Dance lessons. As the workshop was so successful and pupils really engaged in the activities we decided to run a ten week programme of lessons where pupils would be given the opportunity to select an instrument that they would like to learn.
Mark Anderson was assigned through the Ulster-Scots Agency to come into Movilla High School to teach Lambeg Drum, Fife and Tin Whistle; and Keith Lyttle to teach Fiddle lessons. We held auditions as places were limited and had over 70 pupils audition for a place on the scheme. As a result of this we now have a group of 22 pupils taking part in Lambeg Drum lessons, 8 pupils taking Fife lessons, 18 pupils taking Tin Whistle lessons and 12 pupils participating in Fiddle lessons. When the 10 week scheme finished the pupils were more enthusiastic than ever so the Ulster-Scots Agency decided to run the scheme once again, however this time to run over a full school year. This allowed for more pupils to engage with the Ulster-Scots music tuition lessons and they have performed at events such as Achievement Evening, our school play ‘Sit There For The Present’ and the forthcoming concert in the Ulster Hall ‘Ards Gala Performance’.
Our pupils have really benefited from this scheme and from the work of our tutors Mark Anderson and Keith Lyttle. They are learning about the Ulster-Scots Music and Culture as well as gaining new skills and learning to play an instrument. We are extremely grateful for all of their hard work and dedication and would like to thank the Agency for giving us this opportunity.
Elaine Ferris, Music Teacher, Movilla High School, Newtownards