For the 2016-2017 season, four training sessions are on offer: an introductory module took place at the Conservatoire Darius Milhaud in Aix-en-Provence from 12 to 14 November 2016. The training continued at the Grand Théâtre de Provence from 23 to 25 January this year with a more comprehensive module. From 25 February to 1 March, the focus was on the voice, with a module dedicated to Relay singers as part of the enoa (European Network of Opera Academies) network’s Young Opera Makers programme. Lastly, a final module invites participants in the previous sessions to come together and work on developing outreach projects.
Training in the field for unique audiences
Discover the Relay musicians workshop with a group of six teenagers from the IME ESCAT, a medico-educational institute for developmentally disabled young people in Marseille: here, outreach involves teaching the concepts of rhythms, pulsations, tempos, etc. based on musical fragments by Igor Stravinsky. This workshop invites young people to “overcome their limitations and become aware of their own musicality” according to Annie Notin, a specialist educator at IME Escat. And Laurent Zaffran, a teacher at the Collège des Caillols secondary school in Marseille, adds that “this workshop has enabled a free, raw expression leading to moments of grace where we no longer see the disability”. This work shows these teenagers with mental disabilities that “they are just like everybody else, with the common denominator of being highly sensitive”. With his class, Laurent will be continuing this approach by working on Pinocchio – a piece which will be performed as an opera next July at the Festival d’Aix – in order to address the issue of difference through the sensitive character of Pinocchio, with whom the young people can identify, and to explore the conflicted relationship with school.