Unfortunately, MFY Remix 2021 had to move online again this year, but that does not mean we cannot see the amazing submissions of young musical talent around the country! Music For Youth have put together a Video Wall to show this years’ submissions sorted into seven categories: Host Stage, Lockdown Lounge, Massed Remix, Multi-Screen, Music Reimagined, New Music Studio and Soundscapes.
With so many videos to choose from, it might be difficult to know where to start. How about checking out what I think are some wonderful performances from each category? Here are my top picks from MFY’s Remix 2021 Video Wall.
#YES- Wolverhampton #YES ambassadors
Giving the local youth their own voice through the power of music, Wolverhampton #YES ambassadors have created an inspirational track about their hometown. Collaborating with local producer Detonator and local rapper VITAL, #YES allows both people with musical backgrounds and those without to express themselves freely.
I chose #YES from the Host Stage section, as I admire MFY for allowing young people to find their voice and express themselves truly, even if they do not consider themselves musical. With lyrics such as, ‘#YES let me be me’ and ‘#YES I don’t want to be afraid, leaving my house in the night or the day’, a powerful insight into life for the youth is portrayed and really made me open my eyes. I also love the video submitted, recorded before the lockdown, it shows the ambassadors working together and enjoying themselves in the process, something rarely seen in the past year.
Shia and JL- Klezmer Music
Mother and son duo hailing from Manchester, Shia and JL, explore the two Jewish Klezmer tunes on the clarinet and accordion. This fun, intriguing submission showcases the diverse range of music out there in the world, which we are often not aware of.
As a clarinet player myself, I was watching Shia in awe; he was able to play and improvise on the instrument unlike anyone I have ever watched. I also really enjoyed seeing JL play the accordion, it is such a fun instrument which accompanied the clarinet well. I picked Shia and JL’s performance because the Klezmer style is very difficult to master, but this talented duo are a gift to MFY, to show everyone how its done!
Lincolnshire Youth Virtual Orchestra and Chineke! Orchestra- Dance from Othello Suite Op. 79, Samuel Coleridge Taylor
Featuring 120 players, Lincolnshire Youth Virtual Orchestra and Chineke! Orchestra create a sound almost identical to a live symphony orchestra through individual videos! The two orchestras create an exciting, energetic atmosphere through their performance of the Dance from Coleridge Taylor’s Othello Suite.
I chose this submission, as I enjoyed the collaboration between the orchestras and the encouragement of diversity within music, an important topic, especially in the recent years. Playing a piece by a black composer alongside the UK’s first fully ethnically diverse orchestra makes it a unique performance. I also loved seeing the video, which showed so many hard-working and talented musicians that were behind the performance.
City of Belfast Youth Orchestra Cello Section- Oblivion, Piaziolla
This past year has made playing as a full orchestra rather difficult, however the City of Belfast Youth Orchestra have found a way to overcome this. The cello section has split off from the orchestra to work together as a cohort in creating music, highlighting the diversity of the instrument.
I chose this performance because it is rewarding to see a section of an orchestra working so closely together through the lockdown to create beautiful music. I also think the use of the cello not just for melodic lines, but for percussive lines too, is hugely creative and exciting. This cello section’s performance is a true reflection on how musicians have worked closely together to make these strange times much more bearable.
CAPA Juniors - Wait For it
The CAPA Juniors programme is run by Trinity Arts Academy which offers young people, with a desire to pursue a career in the arts, creative training alongside their secondary curriculum. This group has prepared an inspirational performance of ‘Wait For It’ from the hit musical Hamilton.
I chose CAPA Juniors’ submission because of the sing choice shows a sense of determination to make a brighter future. Moreover, I thoroughly enjoyed the video, which shows members of the group showing their talents and working together, both in person and remotely. If you are looking for an uplifting performance that will surely inspire you, definitely check out CAPA Juniors’ performance.
New Music Studio
Saskia Montagu- The Old Life
askia Montagu is a singer and songwriter from Winchester. Her song ‘The Old Life’ is about how everyday life during the lockdown has changed.
I chose Saskia’s performance, as I found myself listening to the performance on repeat! I was captivated by the emotion behind the lyrics, it’s easy to tell Saskia feels exactly what she has written. This is truly a soulful, beautiful performance. Keep and eye out for this young singer in the future, she has potential to make so many more great songs.
Lion Class of Holy Trinity Primary School- An Alien Adventure
Coming up with their own story, the year 5 class of Holy Trinity Primary School have explored what a journey to Mars and meeting aliens there might sound like. This performance shows the creative minds of these children, showing everyone can create music, not just musicians.
I chose An Alien Adventure as I was excited by the development of the story through the instruments chosen. They have also manipulated sounds through Logic, which I think is very impressive, as I cannot figure out how to work that software at all! Also, I thought the pictures shown in the video, telling us the story of An Alien Adventure, were a great choice to match to the music, pairing the worlds of art and music together for a performance. It is uplifting to see young children expressing themselves through music and creating a wonderful piece of art for ours and their own enjoyment.
Still looking for more? The rest of the reporting team, Deanna and Billy, have chosen their personal favourites from the Video Wall too:
Blinded By Your African Grace- Formby High School ‘Mundo Afrika’
“Although there are so many talented people this year, I would have to say my favourite is Blinded By Your African Grace by Formby High School 'Mundo Afrika' I love the way they have remixed two different cultures and their music into one song I think it is highly effective. The editing of the piece and what they are wearing has been thoroughly thought about too which you can clearly see when watching and listening to it.”
Down Town- Yuma and Nahuel
“Yuma and Nahuel show impressive musicianship, they taught themselves how to play electric guitar and bass during the pandemic. The arrangement is on point too, allowing space for each instrument to solo. Also, the final product of the mix and the video is impressive, you can tell a lot of time went into the arrangement and production.”
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