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Myleene Klass, Bicep, Kathryn Tickell and Ollie Howell announced as Youth Music ambassadors

Youth Music, the national UK charity which helps young people to change their own lives through music-making, has appointed four new ambassadors: presenter and multi-instrumentalist Myleene Klass, electronic music duo Bicep, folk musician and band leader Kathryn Tickell and award-winning musician and film composer Ollie Howell.

The ambassadors join Youth Music during a pivotal year in the charity’s history: its 20th anniversary.

Youth Music’s new ambassadors are advocates for the powerful role of music-making in young people’s personal and social development. Their work will help the charity to reach even more young people who are dealing with some of the big issues facing our society today – including mental health, isolation, gang violence and social inequality.

Myleene Klass said:

‘As a musician, a broadcaster, and a mum, I can think of no better language than music. It has taken me to every corner of the globe and given me opportunities that I never even knew were possible.

‘I wanted to join and support Youth Music because its passion to introduce, inspire and surround children with music is so powerful. It’s inclusive of different abilities and backgrounds and brings everyone together. That’s what music should be about.’

3m young people have benefited since 1999

Since Youth Music’s foundation in 1999, three million children and young people – from early years through to early adulthood – have taken part across England in music projects funded by Youth Music. A substantial part of the charity’s funding comes from the National Lottery through Arts Council England.

Youth Music’s independent research also highlights that music is a powerful contributor to wellbeing and the effects of making music are even more powerful than listening to it.

Currently, Youth Music invests in more than 350 music-making projects each year, reaching 89,000 children and young people. But it can only invest in 40% of the projects applying for funding. 

The charity’s new ambassadors recognise the importance of making music for young people and are dedicated to spreading the word on the benefits for individuals as well as communities.

Matt McBriar and Andy Ferguson from Bicep said:

‘When we were younger, we were lucky enough to have a couple of breakthrough moments working with other producers who were much more experienced than us. They opened our eyes and ears up to the possibilities of reaching our full potential as music producers.

‘We have decided to support Youth Music as we love the idea of enabling other young people to have similar experiences and hope to be able to contribute towards better facilities and resources for young musicians.’

‘Music is a life-saver’

Kathryn Tickell said:

‘Music can be a career, a hobby, entertainment, but for some people it is literally a life-saver. The power of music to help with self-esteem, confidence, concentration, communication and social skills is incredible, and vastly underrated. I know many young people whose lives have been transformed by music and I am a passionate supporter of the incredible work done by Youth Music.’

Matt Griffiths, Youth Music CEO, said:

‘I’m thrilled that Myleene, Bicep, Kathryn and Ollie have joined us in our mission to support young people’s lives in music. They know themselves how making music creates a personal, social and musical difference – not only when they were growing up, but in their subsequent careers too. We know that so many more young people want and deserve this opportunity and it’s our job to make that happen.’