VIDEO: Pupils bang the drum for Wakefield

Seven primary schools took part in The Big Drum at Wakefield Cathedral this afternoon.

The lunchtime performance involved almost 240 children aged seven to 11, all of whom had been taught to play as part of the First Access scheme organised by Wakefield Music Education Hub.

The Minsthorpe Music Centre Percussion Ensemble.

The Minsthorpe Music Centre Percussion Ensemble.

Hundreds of parents came to the watch as each school had the opportunity to performed by themselves, but the afternoon event also included performances and songs by the whole group.

Towngate Primary Academy pupils even performed a piece they had organised themselves, inspired by superhero film Black Panther.

The performance was supported by the Minsthorpe Music Centre Percussion Ensemble, a group of percussionists who performed original pieces written by tutor Matthew Foster.

The Big Drum is now in its third year, and this year featured seven schools: English Martyrs Catholic Primary School, Fitzwilliam Primary School, Grove Lea Primary School, Halfpenny Lane Junior & Infant Academy, Mackie Hill Junior & Infant School, Towngate Primary Academy and Wrenthorpe Academy.

Half of the pupils played traditional African drums known as djembe, while others played bamboo tamboos, a type of hollow tube which makes a sound when hit on the ground.

Tracy Ryder, head of the First Access team, thanked parents for their support and urged them to continue. She said: “If you want these children and other children to experience the joy of making music together, we need to support the music hub.”

The First Access scheme provides weekly music lessons to 3,500 primary school children every year on a variety of instruments, including violin, flute, ukulele and, of course, African drums.