Bill Connor at a workshop with children
Bill Connor at a workshop with children

The British Council’s latest education project 'Letter to a Friend' links professional musicians and students of general education and music schools in the creation of a new musical piece. The project raises children’s sensitivity to music and introduces them to the process of creating and performing music as an essential step in better understanding and perceiving artistic creation as a whole. The teachers and professional musicians involved in the project develop new methods and skills in working with children.

The project runs under the artistic leadership of Bill Connor, British composer and music education specialist, and is coordinated by professor Ružica Ambruž Kiš. It consists of a series of creative music workshops for students, teachers and professional musicians in which students, with the assistance and cooperation of musicians, write a libretto in English and compose music to it, all on the theme a 'Letter to a Friend'.

The final concert will be performed at the Vatroslav Lisinski Concert Hall on 25 May 2014 at 7.30 pm.

The project brings together students and teachers from the following schools:

  • Borovje primary school, leader: Tihomir Hojsak, prof.
  • Dr. Ivan Merz primary school, leader: Ana Mikić, prof.
  • Kralja Tomislava primary school, leader: Tomislav Seletković, prof.
  • Mato Lovrak primary school, leader: Mirela Lukić, prof.
  • Stenjevec primary school, leader: prof. Marko Majstorović, prof.
  • IX. gimnazija, choir, choir leader: Kristina Orač, prof.
  • XVI. gimnazija, choir, choir leader: Snežana Ponoš, prof.
  • Elly Bašić Music School:  

·         primary music school choir, leader: Boris Klarić, prof.
·         primary music school string orchestra, leader: Luka Magdalenić, prof
·         secondary music school string orchestra, leader: prof. Marko Magdalenić
·         wind orchestra, leader: Rudolf Homen, prof.
·         accordion orchestra, leader: Snježana Biškup, prof. 

With the support of: 

    • „Zagrebački dječaci“, boy's choir; conductor: Jasenka Ostojić, prof.
    • „Cappella Zinka“, „Cappella Odak“, choir; conductor: Jasenka Ostojić, prof.
    • Vojkan Jocić, saxophone; Tihomir Hojsak, double bass; Lana Janjanin, voice and piano
    • Sven Jagarinec, soprano; Anabela Barić, soprano; Fabijan Komljenović, baritone
    • members of the Zagreb Philharmonic Orchestra 

The project is supported by the City of Zagreb, the Ministry of Science, Education and Sport and the Ministry of Culture. It is co-organised by the Croatian Composer's Society (HDS - ZAMP).

Here is what Bill Connor has written about the theme of the project and what their creative process looks like.