A Thurso musician has provide you with the bizarre problem of working by her piano exams from Grade 1-8 inside a 12 months as a part of an epic fundraiser.
And now Katrina Gordon (50), is nearing the end line of her Sofa to Grade 8 Piano quest with the grand finale on account of happen tomorrow (Wednesday) at 10.30am when she’s going to sit right down to do her on-line examination which will be considered dwell on her Fb web page by clicking here.
Within the course of she has set herself the goal of elevating £5000 for the Scottish Faculties Orchestra Belief (SScOT) which runs non-auditioned residential programs in orchestral and wind band taking part in for youngsters through the summer time holidays.
Katrina has already raised over £3000 and hopes extra donations will are available as individuals tune into the livestreaming of her examination which might nonetheless be considered after the occasion.
The skilled musician, recognized extra for her abilities on the bassoon, confesses that she was garbage at taking part in the piano. Nonetheless, a “gentle” brush with Covid-19 simply earlier than everybody went into lockdown final March meant she was unable to play her favorite wind and brass devices.
She defined that she is presently affected by costochondritis – an irritation of the chest ligaments which flared up as an impact of the coronavirus and has put trumpet, flute and bassoon observe off the menu for some time.
Katrina, who’s concerned in many various native music teams, has over time had a variety of failed makes an attempt at taking part in the piano with recollections of actually crying on the age of 5 when confronted with the ‘arms collectively’ web page in her guide. She moved to woodwind and watched in awe as her two sisters took piano classes to Grade 5 and her gifted brother performed by ear.
Age 16 she tried once more and took one 12 months of piano classes, studying to play the primary two pages of a Mozart sonata, albeit very slowly, as a result of piano was a compulsory requirement for her music school entrance exams.
“That was actually the one tune I might play, and regardless of one of the best efforts of my long-suffering piano trainer on the Royal Academy of Music, it was nonetheless the one tune I might play on the finish of my first 12 months, when it was politely prompt I ought to switch my second examine to contrabassoon,” Katrina stated.
About 20 years later she was persuaded to start out newbie piano instructing on the settlement that if any bought past Grade 3 they may very well be handed over to her accomplice in crime Susie Dingle for extra superior tuition.
Nonetheless, one in every of her pupils, Niamh, refused to switch and after 9 years of classes with Katrina and numerous hours of personal observe opened her Grade 8 piano guide and goals to sit down her examination in June 2021.
“She has impressed me,” stated Katrina. “She has all the time recognized I can not play the piano – she caught with me.”
Alongside the way in which the musician has practised on daily basis, totalling 570 hours taking part in and has sat each examination from Grade 1 by the net system utilized by the Music Academics’ Board (MTB). She set her fundraising goal at £5000 as she felt that was the equal of what she would have earned if she had labored for that many hours.
Most individuals would take a round eight to 10 years to finish all their grades, nevertheless as Katrina might already learn music she has been capable of pace up the method. She will probably be taking her closing Grade 8 examination inside a 12 months of sitting her Grade 1, which she handed final Could.
Her goal was to truly sit the final grade however passing it will likely be a bonus. “Once I began it I didn’t assume I’d have the ability to get to Grade 8,” stated Katrina. “There may be going to be a celebration on Wednesday anyway. I ought to get the leads to per week or two. My trainer Susie generously stated she thinks I’d move.”
“Watching it’ll make for edgy viewing. Though I’m fairly a seasoned performer, taking part in on the piano is alien territory and fairly nerve-wracking. There will probably be a component of nerves with it, definitely it won’t be word good. I’ve managed to move all of the exams thus far, I even bought a benefit for my Grade 7 – I’d say it is hopeful.”
All funds raised will go on to SScOT, which like many charities has been hit laborious by the pandemic and have needed to cancel final 12 months’s residential course and the one deliberate for2021 on account of Covid-19. “I feel all arts organisations and performers are struggling – they’re in fairly a tough state of affairs in the intervening time. They actually do want the cash with a view to survive.”
SScOT director Kate Whitlock stated: “Katrina’s problem is without doubt one of the most bold fundraising challenges I’ve ever seen and the cash she’s raised thus far has been an absolute lifeline for SScOT throughout what’s been a tough 12 months for thus many small charities. We’re all so happy with her for reaching the end line and grateful for every donation alongside the way in which.
“Yearly at SScOT we see how making music collectively can construct youngsters’s confidence and vanity, encourage teamwork, and convey an enormous quantity of pleasure – all issues that we’d like with a view to flourish as we emerge from the pandemic.
“We’re happy with how college students and academics have persevered with Zoom classes and solo observe whereas we have not been capable of play in teams however we won’t wait to be again in the identical room collectively, and each penny we increase by donations will go in direction of making that occur as quickly as potential.”
Donations will be made by her fundrasing web page at https://www.totalgiving.co.uk/mypage/couch_to_grade_8_piano