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Visit by Julliard-NAE Collaboration Alumnus, Steve Dunn

This week we have been most fortunate to engage with our visiting specialist from Juilliard,
Steve Dunn. His visibility across both Dabrowskiego and Limanowskiego was much in evidence
from Wednesday to Friday, with a hectic schedule of workshops, assemblies, class room activity
and with ensemble coaching and a Showcase event.
At Dabrowskiego, Steve was able to present the trombone to all the students in the Early

  • Stephen Dunn

At Dabrowskiego, Steve was able to present the trombone to all the students in the Early
Years, who themselves always participate in a rich programme of singing, instrumental playing
often combined with dance or movement. As Steve’s style is so engaging and captivating in
equal measure, feedback from the work at the earliest levels of our creative programmes was
tremendous, and we can only look forward to the possibilities for the future visits later in our
academic year. Later in the week, musicians from Dabrowskiego joined us for a combined
event, which saw many visiting parents see the early fruits of their musical labours early in
our academic year. At Limanowskiego, Steve worked across all year groups from Primary
through Senior, collaborating and sharing with classroom teachers as well as engaging with
large groups, small groups, students in collaborative partnerships as well as with individual
students, either composers, performers or with musicology discussions. Steve’s many years of
experience as a well-travelled professional performer brought a wealth of stories and practical
advice for budding musicians. In the senior years, our conversation was more concerned
with the relationship between music, the arts and wider entrepreneurship and business
communication skills. This being a particular focus of some of our musicians in the senior
years, these discussions were richly fulfilling and timely in terms of future applications to
university and intended career directions, but also about communication and strategy in
emerging workplaces and organisations.


The summation of this busy collaboration was the Showcase event which took place on Friday
morning in the Limanowskiego canteen. It appeared at one stage as if a cast of thousands had
assembled to perform music to parents and guests, with the combined forces of Tiny Trebles
visiting us from Dabrowskiego, alongside the massed ranks of the Primary Choir and Secondary
Choir. At this event, Steve discussed with the parents the nature of music in schooling today, and the aegis of the collaboration. He reflected on some of the experiences which he had enjoyed this week in school, performed an item of music by fellow American composer-conductor Leonard Bernstein, and joined the Jazz Band in our closing item, Elton John’s “Can you feel the love tonight”. Based on the experience of this wonderfully fulfilling three days for our musicians, we are most fortunate to be able to enjoy our partnership with our visiting Juilliard alumnus, Steve Dunn, and we look forward to what is yet to be achieved as we go forward to the future visits as part of our Juilliard-NAE collaboration.

Dr Nicholas Grigsby
Head of Music

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