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Connect It by Anna Meredith

Anna Meredith and Radio 1's Dev introduce her body percussion piece Connect It

Anna Meredith composed Connect It specially for BBC Ten Pieces.

Anna Meredith is a Scottish composer who writes electronic and acoustic music. She likes to work with orchestras, bands and choreographers to create music that uses clapping, stamping, shouting and beatboxing instead of instruments.

In Anna Meredith's body percussion piece 'Connect It' a variety of rhythmic sounds and movements are passed between the performers. This musical effect is known as a canon. A canon is where two or more instruments,voices or sounds play the same music, but starting at different times.

Listen out for: The repeated rhythmic patterns and sounds made by people using their bodies as instruments.


Watch the introduction film at the top of the page then starting exploring the piece:

Watch the full performance of Connect It by Drum Works, a youth percussion group from East London:

Connect It by Anna Meredith

Download the Connect It MP3

To save to your computer: PC - right-click and save, Mac - ctrl-click and save.

Download classroom lesson plans to explore Anna Meredith's piece (available as PDFs).

To save to your computer: PC - right-click and save, Mac - ctrl-click and save.

Primary lesson plans:

  1. Anna Meredith music lesson plan
  2. How to make a creative response
  3. Lesson plan to accompany the teaching resource film

Suitable for:

  • Key Stage 2 in England and Wales
  • Second Level, P5-P7 in Scotland
  • Key Stage 1/Key Stage 2 in Northern Ireland

Lesson plan 1 written by Ann Barkway. Lesson plan 2 written by Andrew Smith. Lesson plan 3 written by Rachel Leach.

In the films below, Anna Meredith demonstrates eight choreographed steps which use a combination of body percussion, dance moves and vocal percussion. These moves and sounds link together to form the fabric of Connect It. Anna and the children in the film perform the moves in mirror image so your students can copy exactly what they see on screen.

There are 2 ways of using the films to learn the moves with your pupils:

  • Watch the full tutorial (19 minutes) and use the pause button to allow time to rehearse each move
  • Watch the tutorial in 4 separate parts (over 4 lessons perhaps) to enable you to get to grips with a few moves per session

Once your students are confident with the moves, you can perform it alongside the clip from the film or the audio recording of Connect It (MP3) (To download: PC: right-click and save, Mac: ctrl-click and save)

Print out the lesson notes to use as an aide-mémoire (PDF)

The tutorial videos

Full: Learn the classroom version of Connect It

Part 1: Anna demonstrates 'hand swirls', 'snake wave' and 'swimming haka'

Part 2: Anna demonstrates: 'three stage taps', 'cross and yeah' and 'yo-yo'

Part 3: Anna demonstrates: 'knee slides' and 'final yeahs'

Part 4: This split screen film shows the classroom version alongside the film of Connect It

Watch the full performance

Full body percussion performance: Connect It

Watch the full body percussion performance of Anna Meredith's Connect It.

About the composer

ANNA MEREDITH

BORN: 1978 / NATIONALITY: British

Anna Meredith is a British composer and performer. She was born in London and then moved to Scotland when she was 2. She studied music at York University and the Royal College of Music. During her career she has so far won many awards and has written several pieces for the BBC Proms. Anna writes for instruments and orchestras and also creates and performs electronic music. Her piece Connect It doesn’t feature any instruments at all! In 2016 she released an album of her music called Varmints which then toured many of the UK's major musical festivals to great acclaim. Anna's sound is often called 'uncategorisable' because she mixes many different musical worlds together including classical, pop and experimental rock. Her music has been performed across the world and now her voice is heard across the world as she becomes more and more in demand as a broadcaster. She regularly presents for BBC Radio 3 and 6 Music and even crops up on TV from time to time!