SCBWI Success Stories: Kelly Hibbert
As creators, we find inspiration in many different ways. In words, in overheard conversations and people we meet. But have you ever stopped to consider how your creation inspires others to create?
Perhaps you have.
I hadn’t. I often wonder who might be reading my book at a given moment, I imagine the feeling I may experience when I come across a copy donated for sale at a school fair. But I’ve never stopped to reflect on what I do and how that may inspire others.
Fancy Pants began its journey at SCBWI SA's October Retreat Critique Sessions in 2014. Much to my delight, it became a book in 2016 and was distributed for free to 42000 preschool children across SA in 2017/18 with another 42000 copies set to be provided for families in 2021/22.
After that, all it took was a shared vision, internationally-acclaimed musicians, the Australian Youth Orchestra Ensemble and sixty of the most amazing students to turn this story into something else.
Something beyond a book.
This is what can happen when exceptional people like Emily Gann from Connecting the Dots in Music and music teacher, Lucy Standish have a vision, apply for and win a council grant.
Not to mention the connections built between industry innovators.
Enter Belinda Spry from publisher Little Book Press.
The Music for All Project is a unique music education program that will see students with disabilities and/or vision impairments from three schools collaborate across a weeklong composition project. Inspired by the joyful South Australian story, Fancy Pants by Kelly Hibbert and Amanda Graham, this project seeks to demonstrate the deep potential for an inclusive, community-based model of music education that positions students of all abilities at the centre of the creative process, mentored and guided by world-class musicians.
Fancy Pants. A performance? With music? On a stage!
And as if that wasn’t enough.
This performance did more than delight an audience .
Much more than bring people together through music.
So much more than put smiles on faces and leave barely a dry eye.
It inspired one audience member to compose and perform a poem at a Friendly Street Poets' meeting.
It inspired another to begin taking violin lessons again after an extended break.
It inspired people to make the most inspirational comments.
"This show was the best thing I have been to for years. Tears, laughter, hopefulness, joy and all because music brings our souls together in such a powerful way. The children’s faces, the staff delight and the musicians’ smiles said it all and the audience just beamed because they knew they were watching something truly human. Wow so special." Kirsty, Community member.
And it inspired me beyond words.
Once we take the opportunity to sit and reflect, realisation kicks in that what we create is far beyond just a book.
Here's the video which showcases the amazing collaboration and is featured on the Department for Education website.