Dear Sir David… girls swap letters with Attenborough

Friday, 9th July 2021 — By Constance Kampfner

Khadijah (left) and Sophia

Khadijah (left) and Sophia with their letters from Sir David

A PAIR of students have entered into correspondence with Britain’s most popular celebrity, Sir David Attenborough.

Khadijah, aged 12, and Sophia, aged 11, wrote to the environmentalist and documentary maker, to tell him about a song they had composed on the theme of climate change. They were delighted to each receive a hand-written reply.

Seasons Change was written and performed by 73 students who attend Music Education Islington at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama.

The lyrics were inspired by Sir David’s 2021 New Year message. The song also contains the youngsters’ own compositions and raps.

Khadijah – who plays clarinet on the track – says the song “is about helping the planet while we still have the chance”.

“We’re only on this planet for a period of time and we need to leave it for generations to come,” she said. “I felt really thrilled when I received the letter and I’ll cherish it for many years to come.”

Sophia, who is a fellow clarinet player, added: “I was so happy when I got the letter. He’s such a hero.”

The class started working on the song together over Zoom calls in the depths of the winter lockdown.

Sofia says that the lessons gave her “something to look forward to every week”.

Music Education Islington provides every child in the borough with the opportunity to learn an instrument and develop their music skills.

Andrea Stark, Islington Council’s director of employment, skills and culture, said: “It is fantastic to see our young people so engaged with making music and it’s such a brilliant way to support their mental health and wellbeing.”

She added: “Throughout history, music has been used to bring people together as a catalyst for social change, and can really capture the spirit of a movement.

“I hope Seasons Change will help focus our minds on the actions we can all take to reduce our carbon footprint.”

You can listen to the track on the Guildhall School website:

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