The Young Musicians of Cuxaire
Winner of the Special Prize for European Collaboration in the creation of Educational Media 2013
"The Young Musicians of CuxAire" is a film made by the collaboration of two schools, the Titus Salt School of Bradford, UK and the Amandus-Abendroth Gymnasium in Cuxhaven, Germany.
The project started in November 2012, with the students regularly communicating via Skype and visiting each other twice to make the film. During the four-months of work project, the students received support from teachers and fellow students as well as mentoring from professional animator David Bunting.
The film builds on the cultures, resources and imaginations of both schools. The students and teachers involved worked closely together to create not only the film but also the music for this entry.
It is a mix of live action and animation, telling the story of four troubled teenagers, with little musical talent, from Saltaire in England and Cuxhaven in Germany. The teenagers enter a magical world triggered by images of the German folktale 'The Musicians of Bremen'. Their journey takes them through the vibrant and unusual world of CuxAire, changing them both personally and physically.
What the judges said
"Schools from Germany and UK created a partly perplexing and as such outstanding video that boasts a refreshingly unusual combination of traditional fairy-tale story-telling, music, an insight of young people's lives and different kinds of digital animation art, a little bit in a kaleidoscopic way. But there is speed and good alternation which makes it attractive to watch. There is very creative use of animation and live action, sound and music."
Rachel Wilson about the creation of The Young musicians of Cuxaire
"The core focus of the project for both schools is to improve student language learning in both German and English, and to enhance student knowledge of other cultures. The successful application included a number of proposals which would support our main aims.
More than 45 students from Titus Salt School in Saltaire, England and Amandus-Abendroth-Gymnasium Cuxhaven, Germany have been working on that film for more than 1 1/2 years. We had several Skype workshops to work on the story itself, scripts, characters and music. We even had a character casting via Skype which ended with more than 40 students playing the percussions attune. In two 10-day exchanges (students lived in host families) students worked in mixed groups according to their likes and talents: backgrounds were created, music was composed, the story was filmed, animated and edited, posters were made, a website was created, a sweatshirt designed, ... . We also included all students of both schools in the decision on which fairy tale should be the inspiration of our film and in the flash mobs.
The heads of both schools recorded the words of the schools' motto as part of the film. Working on the film has created a sustainable relationship between the schools… 22 students and 3 staff from the German school paid a return visit to Bradford for 10 days in March, when they were joined by professional Animators and Musicians in order to complete the film they had started in November."
About Rachel Wilson
Rachel Wilson has been teaching German in secondary schools in Yorkshire for 11 years. For the past 6 years she has been Faculty Leader at Titus Salt School in Bradford. Rachel enjoys taking her students to Germany to get first-hand experience of the language and culture. Over the past two years she has been working on a Bilateral Comenius project with the Amandus-Abendroth Gymnasium in Cuxhaven.
During the MEDEA Awards Ceremony that took place during the Media & Learning Conference, “The Young Musicians of Cuxaire” was announced as the Winner of the Special Prize for European Collaboration in the creation of Educational Media 2013. Rachel Wilson received the MEDEA Medal as well as a Google Nexus 7 tablet and aCamtasia Studio & Photoshop & Premier Elements 12 software bundle.