IT’S a school of rock with a difference.
Huddersfield band Being 747 have ditched performing in dingy pubs and clubs in favour of school halls.
But the trio are not out to inspire the next generation of young rock stars and are instead teaching youngsters about the wonders of science and nature with their own brand of ‘edupop’.
The pioneering band’s live educational pop shows are set to blast out to pupils at a string of schools across South Yorkshire after being commissioned by The Dearne Valley Green Heart Partnership.
The organisation brings together local authorities from Rotherham, Barnsley and Doncaster in partnership with the Environment Agency, Natural England and the RSPB.
The band’s multimedia show In The Valley teaches pupils about the natural and social history of the Dearne Valley using seven catchy pop tunes each with its own video.
Being 747 members Steve and Paul Morricone from Huddersfield band The Scaramanga Six and former Landspeed Loungers singer Dave Cooke had already been boosting rock fans’ IQs with their science and music fusion Amoeba to Zebra.
The show, which explores the natural history of the Earth, has been performed at bars, science festivals and colleges and even at the Edinburgh Festival.
But the new show is thought to be the first time a rock group has been commissioned to create a bespoke lesson for schoolchildren.
Band member Steve Morricone said: “There’s no-one else in the country doing anything like this.
“Educational is what we’ve been doing for the last few years now.
“Before that we were a regular band releasing regular albums.
“We’re transforming from a regular pop group into an edupop company.”
The band has written all the songs and music, filmed the videos and even designed their own props and outfits.
The 45-minute pop show includes chapters about birds, the countryside, the industrial heritage of the area, rivers, flooding, ecology and the water cycle.
The debut ‘lesson’ was held at Foulstone City Learning Centre near Barnsley last week and Steve said they were excited about their new careers as teachers.
“It went really well,” he said. “We’re absolutely chuffed to bits with how well it went.
“We performed to the whole of years seven and eight.
“The kids had a look of confusion on their faces when they saw these three guys wearing tweed with giant pigeon heads on, but that was quickly replaced with massive grins.
“There’s a lot of comedy in it and they were really entertained.
“Science is one of the most important subjects in schools and we’re on a mission to help kids get into science. It’s so important to understand how things work.”
The three-piece are now hoping they will get the call to stage their ‘edupop’ show in their hometown.
Steve said: “We can adapt the show to be relevant to other areas.
“It would be good to play in schools in Huddersfield. There are plenty of areas in the Colne Valley that this would be completely relevant to”.