By Shelby Brooks

KORUMBURRA Secondary College student Kaylah Thomas is worried she might be at a disadvantage to other students for her VCE Music Performance exam should COVID-19 restrictions tighten.

The year 12 student’s preparation for her practical music exam at the end of the year is up in the air following the return to remote learning and Stage Three restrictions.

The subject involves a 50 per cent weighted exam that requires an accompanist – one which Kaylah organised months before with a metropolitan-based pianist.

Kaylah and fellow music student Andrea Axford booked the Melbourne outer suburbs pianist because in past years regional students have been required to travel into Melbourne for the examination.

Kaylah said she was worried that the accompanist may be unable to rehearse or undertake the exam with her due to the metropolitan lockdown.

“With the ever-changing climate of 2020 I don’t want to be unprepared going into my exam,” Kaylah said.

The passionate singer must perform five songs from five different genres for the exam, as well as a vocal exercise known as a vocalise, so is seeking a local who can help her instead.

“My programme for my exam consists of a blues song, contemporary ballad, musical theatre number, pop rock song, gospel and RnB piece, folk song, and my vocalise,” Kaylah said.

“Currently I am unable to rehearse with my accompanist as they are in Stage Four lockdown and Zoom sessions are currently still in negotiations.”

Kaylah said her teachers at Korumburra Secondary College had been incredibly supportive of the transition from onsite to remote learning.

“Music is one of the easier subjects to study remotely – I practise with ease – and don’t look at it as a chore, but a fun activity to do,” Kaylah said.

Trying to look on the positive side, Kaylah said she had learnt a lot about herself during remote learning.

“I view remote learning as a challenge that needs to be overcome,” she said.

“I like routines, they keep me motivated and in check so last time it took me a while to get adjusted with my new learning environment, however, I was able to find my routine.

“Not only that but remote learning in the past has taught me better self-control. I had to be the person to tell myself ‘to put the phone down and study’, to say ‘Kaylah stop texting your friends – you have tasks you need to complete’ or ‘Kaylah you can do this – come on one more hour of study and then you can go binge watch your favourite show on Netflix, or read that book, or sing that song’.”