'The Dragon Is Withered'
Whilst studying Music at university, Kathryn conducted a study which derived from her own experience having worked alongside Music teachers which lead her to ask: what are pupils' perceptions of singing in the school choir? Are these perceptions different for males and females?
It had always been apparent to Kathryn that Music is more favourable for females than males; however the reason for this remained unknown. After broad exploration of research and literature which focussed on Music and the school choir setting, an in-depth insight into pupils' perceptions of Music and the school choir became apparent. Whilst it was obvious that when given a choice between singing and sport, 90% of boys would choose sport, Kathryn believed that boys' identities as choral singers could be developed in order to close the gap in gender. In collation of this, Kathryn thought that it was approprtiate to compose a piece for a boys' choir which was based around a universal interest of most adolescent boys, with a view of engaging as much male interest as possible.
Kathryn adopted the poem 'The Dragon Is Withered' which is found in the final chapter of The Hobbit, 'The Last Stage', written by J. R. R. Tolkien. Since haven written the piece, Kathryn has been fortunate enough to have co-coached a boys' choir, who learnt and performed the piece at a local choir festival.
'It's clear (even to someone non-nusical like me) how very talented Miss Mountain is at both singing and song-writing. The Junior School Choir singing Miss Mountain's song was the highlight of the whole night for me.'
Parent, Queen Elizabeth Grammar School Junior School