School music programmes assisted

Youthful bands show ‘amazing talent’

A recent fundraiser held to benefit
music programmes at the John Gray High School has given students a much needed

The event, which was organised by
One World Entertainment in association with Aqua Beach, saw performances from
youthful bands such as “Undiscovered”, which organisers said is amazingly talented.

The band is comprised of recent
alumni of John Gray and George Hicks.  

Also performing on the occasion was
Natasha Kozaily, a young lady who has made a name for herself belting out
original tunes, which she has written and composed.

At the end of the evening, $1,587.43
was raised.

Double up

Eden Hurlston of One World
commented on the actual event: “We were able to collect double what we did last
year and will no doubt be able to make a substantive contribution that is worth
the while for everyone.”

Mr. Hurlstone added that the funds
collected from the event were not, in his opinion, a donation but rather an
investment in making sure stages in the Cayman Islands are never empty.

“These are the people we will be
welcoming into the Island’s music scene/industry in the near future and it is
important to give them the support now.”

Many musicians in the Cayman
Islands have been recognising the importance and practicality of supporting
music programmes for youth and Charles Gregory of Hopscotch Studios is one such

He donated a mixing board to the music
programme at John Gray, which is said to be worth roughly $25,000.

Two programmes

The John Gray High School has two
music programmes. One is referred to as Music Technology, while the other is
known as General Music.

In the former, students are taught
to master an instrument in the traditional way.

However, in Music Technology, they
are taught the theory of instruments as a baseline for creating music using
many different instruments.

They are also taught stage
management, set-up and sound engineering.

The results have been phenomenal since
the programme got of the ground last year, according to Head of Music at John
Gray Philip Manyeh.

He says what has happened has
surpassed their imagination in that they did not anticipate the influx of
students that were thirsty for these kinds of skills.

 As a result, the teachers at John Gray also
underwent training to be able to offer the course at an accredited GCSE level.

They say suddenly, a student who
may not have had any GSCE passes, might now get one or two and his/her whole
future could be transformed as a result.

The teachers added that students
who take the music technology class generally do not give any problems and
often times the only issue is getting them to leave the room once they have
started their work.

“The nature of what they are doing
is personal and so there is a lot more than school work going on. They really
see it as an extension of themselves and the exercise also builds self esteem
and confidence in them,” said Mr. Manyeh.

General Manager of Aqua Beach Jason
Moir said he was pleased the business could play a role in benefitting the community
in some way and thanked all who contributed to the cause.


Top Music

Stephen Walton, Jason Moir, Philip Manyeh, Chip Powell, Eden Hurl-ston were instrumental in fundraising.
Photo: Stuart Wilson