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What do Danny Langston and Jack Summerfield have in common? Well they’re both students at ACM who are studying drums and now both involved in the biggest event of the summer – the Olympic opening ceremony. We caught up with Danny to chat about his involvement and the prospect of performing in front of a global audience.
Q. How does it feel to know you’re going to be involved in what can only be described as the ‘Greatest showcase on earth’?
It’s great! Being part of it makes me realise how big it really is. You can’t look anywhere without finding something related to it, almost every advert on TV or poster mentions it or is sponsoring something to do with it etc. It’s a great feeling to be part of. Especially with titles like that, ‘The greatest show on Earth’, what more could you want.
Q. How did you get involved with playing at the Opening Ceremony for the Olympics?
ACM pointed me towards it through the student portal. They posted a link to a separate site and gave me some details about what I might need and I followed that, filled in the necessary questions, and got an audition.
Q. Tell us about the audition process you went through.
There were two auditions I had to go through, each with around 250 people at a time. The first was following some basic choreography and at first I thought I might have been in the wrong place because it was very over the top and quite eccentric. At the end they asked if anyone had specific skills to do with the ceremony, I can’t give away some of the skills they were looking for, should be a nice surprise there, however my skill should be quite obvious.
The second audition was much more specific and we were asked to demonstrate a basic rhythm and show we could memorize rhythms and keep in time with the click and the group.
Q. Any advice for any ACM students on taking part in these types of large scale auditions?
Always give your all and make sure you are very enthusiastic however basic or easy what you are doing/playing is. Also go for every audition you can, I almost chose not to because of the commitments to travel and time management for the rehearsals, but kept reminding myself how big this opportunity will be. You never know who you might meet and what opportunities could come from it, I have already met some amazing people that we have been asked to be kept quiet (not just being around Danny Boyle)
Q. Obviously the details of the ceremony are a closely guarded secret but how are rehearsals going?
They are getting better with every rehearsal and we’re starting to get more organised and we really are starting to feel like we’re part of something special.
Q. You’re just one of thousands of performers taking part in the event, but how does it feel to know you’re one of a number of ACM students taking part?
I really like the fact that I am there because of ACM and because I am a drummer. There are some people there who just heard about it and got involved. I like being able to point out why I am there and part of a music college that is recognised. I have met a few other drummers working and at other colleges, and it’s good to have a place you study at recognised. It is also nice having people I know there for the same reasons.
ACM would like to thank Danny for taking the time to talk to us about his involvement in the upcoming Olympic ceremony and we wish him and ever other ACMer involved the very best of luck!