‘A gift every year’: Blues in school gets kids rocking
THE DAILY GLEANER
Cape Breton singer-songwriter Dan Doiron entertains students at
Connaught Street School on Monday as part of the Harvest Jazz and Blues
Festival’s Blues In The Schools program. He talked about the history of the
blues in between songs and stories. PHOTO: ADAM BOWIE/THE DAILY GLEANER
Students at Fredericton’s Connaught Street Elementary clapped
their hands and joined a gymnasium-wide sing-along Monday morning, part of
an event to help kick off this year’s Harvest Jazz and Blues Festival. Each year, New Brunswick’s largest annual musical celebration
brings together talented artists with local schoolchildren through its
long-running Blues In The Schools program. The festival aims to expose more than 30,000 children to musical
experiences through the program each year, teaching them the history of blues
music and its influence on other genres in fun, participatory sessions.
On Monday, Cape Breton singer-songwriter Dan Doiron visited
Connaught Street Elementary for a playful performance. In the midst of his session, he paused to ask the kids what they
knew about the blues. It wasn’t long before the hands shot up. “We’ve got some people who know some stuff about the blues,” he
said, gazing across the gym. “What do you know about the blues? It’s music? And it’s a colour?
Right. What else?” Other students pointed out the blues is featured prominently
at Fredericton’s annual music festival. “I’m pretty impressed that you guys know some stuff about the
blues,” said Doiron as he strummed and chatted with the kids.
Principal Barb Corbett welcomed him to the school.
“It’s a gift every year to be able to bring a musician in to share
the joy this week,” she said. “As you know, downtown Fredericton is alive with activity this
week and we’re so happy.” Corbett encouraged her students to enjoy the show, and to share
the experience with their families.
“I know you’re going to be talking about this around the supper
table,” she said.