Honouring a work commitment - Thank You

A huge, huge thank you to those who fed back advice to my desperate post some ten days ago. Thanks to this I was able to honour my commitments of three heavy days and evenings at the Thurrock music festivals. We had over eight hundred children, aged 7-11 years, participating who had a wonderful experience that will remain with them for a lifetime.

Included in the programme was a newly commissioned song written by the Royal Opera House especially for our children, where the children sang alongside a professional baritone singer from ROH.

It had been my job to teach this challenging, complex, dramatic, nine minute song, to each individual school choir in the months prior to the festival and to lead them by conducting the combined choir at the concerts. Needless to say, it was extremely important to me ( and my boss) that I was able to see this commitment through to the end. Thanks to you I did!!!!!!!

My reward was witnessing the 'awe and wonder' of children, colleagues from TMS and ROH, the composers, professional singers, and indeed the audience, when witnessing the 'end' result during the performances. This once in a lifetime experience and the standards achieved was exceptionally remarkable and unique. The standing ovations each evening said it all, but even more far reaching is the sense of achievement felt and so richly deserved by the children, who tell me they now 'love' opera!

My sincerest thanks for all the advice that enabled me to do it!

Nothing in the diary now for the next week, so still following through the advice and resting, resting, resting.

Fondest regards. Marilyn X

Last edited by

11 Replies

  • So pleased it all worked out!

  • Well done! Enjoy your rest

  • That sounds just AMAZING! 🎉 Marilyn. Save the cartwheels for a few days.

    Well done you, spreading so much joy that will never be forgotten.

  • What an achievement! Well done for being able to follow through and see the results of all your hard work and the lasting effects it will have on those children and families. X

  • Brilliant Marilyn, really pleased for you. Now you've got some time to rest you can sit and relive those moments over and over again in your head. I'm dithering whether to try or duck out of something today - just because of this all pervasive tiredness, - but I think you've just inspired me to give it a go.

  • Well done Marilyn, now be gentle on yourself xxx

  • Congratulations Marilyn! I can only imagine how much hard work this entailed; I'm sure it's a memory that you and the children will treasure. Is the performance online anywhere? Would love to hear it.

  • Thanks for your lovely comments and interest. Due to regs in place to protect vulnerable children we were unable to video the performance and just have an audio recording for our records. I think I will be suggesting that, if there is a next time, we do seek permission to record both audio and visual ahead of the event as it is such an achievement for the children involved. X

  • I missed your original post but am amazed at the amount of time, energy, dedication and sheer creativity you put into this Festival - and what a successful outcome. So well deserved, Marilyn, a terrific achievement .. you must be feeling on top of the world :-)

  • Hi Slowdown,

    I am indeed on top of the world and with good reason.

    I retired two years ago (Headteacher - early retirement through choice at 56, due to growing disillusionment about the state of education in UK. I did not want to compromise my beliefs of what a good education looks and feels like for 7-11 year olds. Teaching kids to pass tests at 11 years old - not my ball game! Nor did I want to end up hating the job I had loved for over thirty five years). After six months of retirement (which included moving house and changing lifestyle - now live in very expensive mobile home I designed, on mobile home park), i quickly became bored! Having been in school since the age of five really didn't know what else, other than teaching, I could do.

    Tried my luck and had a couple of interviews in London for IT posts, but fell down on 'business' related questions, however remained positive since I was getting shortlisted for interviews for good jobs outside of teaching. This helped to boost my confidence and self belief.

    When the sun began to shine March 2016 I decided I didn't really want to work full time, so applied for a job, in the slow lane, teaching flute for a couple of days a week.

    Thanks to the wonderful insight of my new boss, whilst I am not teaching flute, I now have a part time job, in the fast lane,bdoing all the things I am good at and love, tailored around my strengths!!!! Part of which is working with school choirs. ......... How lucky am I at 57 to land a bespoke job that I absolutely love!!!!!!!!

    In addition I am in charge of my own diary! If the sun shines I don't work! I can club my hours together and have holidays during term time. So I have all the benefits of being semi- retired as well!

    My boss loves me ( because I give good value for money, bring new ideas, influence teams to work well together and above all make people laugh with my antics and, quite frankly, my immature behaviour!). My boss refers to me as a breath of fresh air (ain't bad for a 58 year old!)

    No wonder I am feeling very blessed! Very very blessed indeed!

    So........ life can begin again at 57 PMR or no PMR.

    Be lucky!! Stay positive!

  • I was a self-employed translator - all the same plus points! And I loved it. All gone now - my primary client simply disappeared into the sunset without even being polite enough to tell me as they cut costs (and lost business). We also retired when the NHS stopped being encouraging to OH about the things that made it feel worth doing the paper trail without any training. Research gone - he was gone. We moved here and he went into a totally different research field using his science skills. And has just retired (he says) again...

You may also like...