Passion: Makayla Forbes said music “calms me down and brings me into a completely different world”. She is in many choirs and bands.MUSICIAN Makayla Forbes started 2017 by penning her first song, Looking Up.
She will end the year by having hundreds of thousands of students across the country simultaneously sing Shine Together, a song she co-wrote with John Foreman OAM,X Factor AustraliafinalistTaylorHenderson and four peers.
“It’s the most amazing thing I have ever done,” said Makayla, 17, who attends Callaghan College Jesmond.
Shine Together was written for this year’s Music: Count Us In initiative, a participation and advocacy program that aims to raise the profile of music education by encouraging students to sing the same song, at the same time on the same day, November 2. Last year,more than 500,000 students from more than 2300schools participated.
Makayla’s music teacher encouraged her to write her first song in February this year as part of the application to become one of the program songwriters.
“After I sent it I said to her ‘That was fun, but I don’t know how we’re going to go’,” she said. “I was with her when I found out and said ‘We got somewhere –we actually achieved something!’. It was a massive surprise.”
Makayla –who has been singing since she was in kindergarten and plays the guitar, piano, ukulele, saxophone and glockenspiel– and the four students were given one day with Foreman and Henderson to write the song. Her chord progression was used in the final song, as was one of her lyrics, ‘It’s okay to be different’.
She said Henderson urged her to “never give up” on her dream of studyingfor a music and secondary education degree and balancinga career as a music teacher with tutoring, song writing and production.