My name is Rachel Simmonds. I am a Fifth Year pupil at Lochaber High School and I play the Bassoon! I started playing this instrument about four years ago and quickly began to love the sound of it. As soon as I could make some coherent notes, I knew that it was the instrument for me. Over the years my admiration for the instrument itself has only prospered and my appreciation of classical music has magnified with my involvement in local music groups such as: Lochaber Music School, our school’s Senior Wind Band and Big Band, The Highland Youth Regional Orchestra and also The Highland Schools’ Wind Band. Although the bassoon does tend to take over my life at times, countless hours of practice have paid off as I recently auditioned for The National Youth Orchestra of Scotland and was accepted to join them in 2017.
I decided to become a young ambassador for the RSNO (Royal Scottish National Orchestra) because I wanted to learn more about what happens behind the scenes of classical music. Every couple of months we all gather in Glasgow to go and see one of the concerts playing that night and to discuss topics relevant to that work. For example, our last forum was focused on the age gap that is becoming apparent in the RSNO chorus as that night we saw Verdi’s Requiem. From doing this we can give feedback to the RSNO about what we think the constraints and restrictions may be for young people interested in music. I’ve really enjoyed being a young ambassador so far as it has allowed me to meet people around my own age who share the passion and devotion that I have towards my instrument and music, classical and contemporary.
My job as a young ambassador is to engage and spread awareness to young people of the opportunities currently in the music scene and of the work the RSNO do. If you’re interested, please click the link to the RSNO season 2016/17 brochure: http://www.rsno.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/RSNO-Season-1617-Glasgow.pdf
Lochaber High School, Camaghael, Fort William, Inverness-shire. PH33 7ND Tel. 01397 702512