Drunkards would totter into our back courtyard for an impromptu session of singing-cum-caterwauling. Listeners would vote with their pennies. A decent rendition would merit pennies thrown down; a painful rendition would also merit pennies, but this time they were heated right up by holding them over the stove with a pair of pliers. ‘Take that ya screechy blighters! Beggar off with ya!’
Inebriates would drunkenly find their way into our back courtyard to bless us all with a spontaneous musical session. If their vocal performance was pleasant enough, they would be rewarded with pennies showered down by the audience above. If however, the ‘singing’ split your nerves, the pennies thrown down would be heated up first, over the stove with some tongs. ‘Be off with ya! A throttled cat could screech better than you!’
Some of the locals would get all tipsy and somehow end up in our back courtyard to grace us all with a spur-of-the-moment concert. Although, if they were any good, residents would throw pennies down for them. If their performances split our ears however, then the pennies would be held over a stove with some pliers till they were red hot. ‘Clear off! Ya screechy, whiney sods! Take it somewhere else!’
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