Summer time is usually the time when we all take a breath. This summer feels a little bit different. There is always a fresh start in some ways, a chance to wind down and gear up for what comes ahead but also a time to reflect on the many achievements of last year. It was also a time to meet some of the very talented students from Applefields School who I will be getting to know very well. They showcased their skills on all instruments possible without a flinch or a flutter or nerves, just pure confidence. One recurring thing for me throughout the summer is being able to feel proud of what our students have accomplished and knowing that they’re revelling in their glories. But two cases stand out in particular for me.
Firstly, Rebecca Fisher won a very prestigious award for her amazing piece of art. She was presented this award by the Lord Mayor and Lord Mayoress of York. I mean, there can’t be many greater senses of accomplishment than that, so well done Rebecca! This is a great achievement and we have been rightly gloating about your victory on our social media and hopefully you’ll have been able to see all the lovely messages left by our followers.
I was scrolling through Facebook one night and a friend had shared a video of this lad singing and pacing around in his back garden. I possibly scrolled past it once or twice again and then I realised...it was Spencer! And the video was at 140k views! Wow. I couldn’t really believe it at first but it had instantly gone viral all over Facebook and TikTok and at the time of writing it is verging on 600k views. The power of social media is well and truly kicking! All the comments that were left are just waves of gobsmackedness at the vocal talent on show. We all know how talented Spencer is with his singing, but to get this level of recognition by people all over the UK is astounding. This guy has real talent, he is going to go far. I’ve known Spencer for around 2 1/2 years now. I met him when he was a raw and very furious drummer whose tenacity and enthusiasm was enough to shake the practice rooms! But now I can see he is blossoming into a top level musician. For me, this instance of seeing someone you believe in and have worked so closely with get his just deserts, I don't think there is anything more satisfying you'll feel as a teacher and a mentor.
Talking about the power of social media well and truly kicking. Our brand new, fresh website is now up and running and our presence on social media is now transforming as we will be posting a lot more about what goes on from day to day at SMART.
I’ve spent a long time rebuilding our website in terms of functionality, content and design, but it is finally ready. I feel like I’ve achieved something fairly decent as I’m basically a complete novice when it comes to website design, but I thought I'd throw myself in the deep end anyway. But this small achievement is really nothing compared to what Rebecca and Spencer have achieved by just ultimately showing their raw talent without expecting anything in return. I can’t say it enough...but I’ll say it once more! Well done to the both of you, you’ve really made my Summer with your talent. And Spencer, remember me when you're famous! Dougie.