Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and Dumfries House partnership © Martin Shields

Royal Conservatoire of Scotland Dumfries House partnership

Dumfries House, Cumnock, Ayrshire KA18 2NJ, Scotland


The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland works with Dumfries House to deliver performing arts education opportunities to young people in Ayrshire.

The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland Dumfries House partnership is committed to building strong artistic foundations for the people and communities of Scotland.

About the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland Dumfries House partnership

Currently, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland offers strings and modern ballet programmes at Dumfries House, giving young people the opportunity to access high-quality, specialist tuition in the beautiful surroundings of this 18th century Palladian mansion, set in a 2,000-acre estate.

Dumfries House is one of Scotland’s architectural jewels and was saved from closure by HRH the Prince of Wales (known in Scotland as the Duke of Rothesay) in 2007 to become a centre of education and regeneration, offering training opportunities to the local community in engineering, art and hospitality.

With Dumfries House wishing to add performing arts to its growing portfolio, a partnership with Royal Conservatoire of Scotland was formed in 2016 through HRH the Prince of Wales, who is patron of both institutions.

Header photo: Young string players at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland Dumfries House partnership © Martin Shields

Posted In  Multi-arts and  Vocal/instrumental learning/teaching

A Premiere Performances Chamber Music in Schools Programme workshop

Premiere Performances’ Chamber Music in Schools Programme

Hong Kong

Data according to surveys collected from participating teachers and students:

  • 40% of students who live far away from cultural facilities had never seen a live performance before
  • 80% of students who play an instrument were inspired to practise more after the concert
  • 100% of teachers would recommend the Chamber Music In Schools programme to other schools
  • 70% of teachers agreed the best part of the concert for their students was the interactive activities and hearing the instruments live
  • 90% of music teachers agreed the in-schools performances were better than programmes provided by other music organisations
  • 90% of teachers who participated in the workshop reported that information, concepts and activities given by the speaker was of a high standard
  • 95% reported that they will use the concepts and activities they learned in their music classes
  • 95% agreed that they have more confidence in using different concepts as a result of the teachers' workshop
  • 98% of teachers reported that they gained new insights into music teaching and felt their music teaching skill would be improved

  • 'The performance was unique and remarkable!' - Student, Shap Pat Heung Rural Committee Kung Yik She Primary School
  • 'The performance is well organised. It is full of passion and energy. I hope we can watch the concert again!' - Music Teacher, Tsuen Wan Trade Association Primary School
  • 'The performers are professional and passionate, students enjoy the activities very much' - Music Teacher, SKH St Thomas' Primary School
  • 'The programme is energetic, creative and lovely. The musicians are well prepared and have passion in music teaching. Great job!' - Music Teacher, King’s College Old Boys' Association Primary School

  • To provide schools with quality workshop and performance exposure from internationally recognised and rising chamber musicians.

Premiere Performances of Hong Kong (PPHK) brings internationally celebrated artists to Hong Kong for solo recitals, chamber music and community outreach.

Since 2012, the organisation has partnered with Musica Viva Australia to bring its world-class education programme to Hong Kong schools via the Chamber Music in Schools Programme.

The programme introduces students to chamber music through high-quality professional performances, exposing them to different kinds of music (classical, jazz, world music etc) and musical instruments (brass, wind etc) and broadening their vision as global citizens as they listen to and explore musical styles and cultures from other parts of the world.

Chamber Music in Schools Programme

As of July 2018, Premiere Performances’ Chamber Music in Schools programme has arranged school tours 14 music ensembles (12 from Musica Viva Australia and two from Premiere Performances) and made nearly 300 school visits, reaching 3,000 teachers and 80,000 students.

A Chamber Music in Schools Programme workshop

A Chamber Music in Schools Programme workshop

Each Chamber Music in Schools ensemble visits at least 15 schools across Hong Kong per tour, providing in-school concerts and chamber music workshops.

Each ensemble offers an educational and interactive one-hour performance for up to 300 students. Along with to the live performance, participating music teachers are given an Education Kit, providing a range of pre- and post-performance activities to maximise the impact of the performance.

In addition, a free workshop specially designed for music teachers is hosted by a music education specialist from Musica Viva Australia once a year for all participating teachers.

Programme development

In 2013, Premiere Performances recognised the need for a Cantonese programme for local schools. An open audition was arranged to recruit local young talents to join this programme and a woodwind ensemble, Viva! Pipers, was formed as a result. The five members received extensive training from professional musicians from Musica Viva Australia to help them deliver high-quality educational performances. To facilitate high demand from local schools, a second ensemble, Fiesta Brass, was formed in 2016.

Local ensembles

Viva! Pipers (woodwind quintet)

Viva! Pipers is an ensemble of talented musicians from Hong Kong who have received overseas training. The group’s performances have been carefully developed to showcase a range of musical styles and genres and to be engaging and fun. Since the ensemble’s first school tour in April 2015 – as of the end of the 2017/18 school year – they have given nearly 70 performances at kindergartens, Primary and Special Needs schools and visited more than 20,000 students. They have also given public concerts at Sha Tin Town Hall, Ngau Chi Wan Civic Centre and Tuen Mun Town Hall and community concerts at Hysan Place and Exchange Square. Viva! Pipers performs in both Cantonese and English.

Fiesta Brass (quintet)

Fiesta Brass is the second ensemble established by Premiere Performances to perform in its Chamber Music in Schools Programme

Fiesta Brass is the second ensemble established by Premiere Performances to perform in its Chamber Music in Schools Programme

Fiesta Brass is an ensemble of five outstanding young Hong Kong musicians who are passionate about performing. The group was formed in 2017 and is the second ensemble established by Premiere Performances after the successful launch of Viva! Pipers in 2014. The members are receiving professional training from international ensembles and music specialists from Musica Viva Australia. Fiesta Brass gave their first school tour in March 2018. They gave a total of 20 performances and reached 6,000 Primary students and 200 teachers. They also gave a community concert at the Asia Society in January 2018. Fiesta Brass performs in Cantonese only.

Header photo: A Chamber Music in Schools Programme workshop

Posted In  OutreachPerformance and  Vocal/instrumental learning/teaching


Friday Afternoons

Snape Maltings, Snape, Saxmundham, Suffolk IP17 1SP

  • Arts Council England
  • The Bernarr Rainbow Trust
  • The Boltini Trust
  • The Garfield Weston Foundation
  • The Sackler Trust
  • The Doric Charitable Trust

  • To encourage young people to sing;
  • To build a Song Bank and support material to help teachers develop their students' skills as performers, listeners and composers.

East of England

Founded in 2013 and inspired by Benjamin Britten, Friday Afternoons is an international initiative encouraging young people to sing.

The Friday Afternoons initiative began as part of the celebrations for Benjamin Britten’s centenary. What was initially just a Suffolk project became regional, then national, then global, and on Friday, 22 November 2013, there were close to 70,000 young people from around the world singing one or more of Britten’s songs.

Friday Afternoons now commissions new repertoire every year for children’s voices, with a whole host of resources available for free on the website, including teaching and accessibility resources to help as many people as possible engage with the songs.

The project’s ever-growing Song Bank contains new music and support material to help teachers develop their students’ skills – as performers, listeners and composers.

For 2017, Luke Styles worked alongside librettist Alan McKendrick on 12 new songs for the Friday Afternoons Song Bank. Eight of the songs were written by the composer and librettist, with four additional songs being created in collaboration with groups of young people across the country. These groups are: Elgol Primary School and Bun-sgoil Shlèite, Isle of Skye; Thomas Wolsey School, Ipswich; Netley Primary School, London; and students from Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance.

Posted In  EducationPerformance and  Vocal/instrumental learning/teaching

The I Speak Music project

I Speak Music

Surrey Music Hub, Westfield Primary School, Bonsey Lane, Kingfield, Woking GU22 9PR, UK

Youth Music

  • "When I came to this country it was a bit strange to me, it didn't feel very comfortable to be in a new place, new language and meeting new people, going back to square one. Meeting people like Jim [Pinchen, project manager] made such a difference in my life - I think everyone feels the same when they come and take part in this project. They feel welcome and feel like they can play a part" - Rajhad Haddad, violist, I Speak Music Community Orchestra
  • "What I love about it is the diversity of the group and the fact that, whenever we have a rehearsal, everyone comes not quite knowing what's going to happen, not quite confident, slightly insecure, and some of them come from quite a solitary place. By the end of the rehearsal the energy of the music has really solidified everyone together - it's a beautiful energetic experience." - Sara Khoroosi, freelance musician, Surrey Arts worker

  • To bring together professionals and community groups who work with, or have an interest in supporting newly arrived and vulnerable young people through the arts and music.
  • To deliver song writing taster workshops, music workshops, and a celebration concert of participants' experience.
  • To develop the musical skills and build the self-confidence of the young musicians.
  • To allow tutors, supporters and project partners to also grow through this experience by gaining a better understanding of the challenges these young people face and grow in confidence in engaging with them.
  • To inspire participants to join and progress onto other Surrey Arts ensembles and groups.
  • To continue to develop what they have learned and explore music genres after the project ends.

South-East England



I Speak Music is a project bringing together professionals and community groups who work with newly arrived and vulnerable young people through music.

Between April and December 2018, a team of talented and enthusiastic professional musicians and supporters will work with these young people (who might be young asylum seekers, young refugees or young people who have been trafficked to UK). They will provide a number of taster sessions, song writing and music workshops during the school holidays, a time when young people can feel the most isolated and vulnerable, and will together share the fruits of their experience at a celebration concert for friends, family and supporters.

The activities will provide a safe and supportive environment for expression, creativity and musical skills, as well as practical tools such as relaxation through breathing and rhythm exercises. Sessions will focus on exploring shared identities to serve as a catalyst to create new music together. They will be able to make new friends, relax and have fun while making music – their music. Instruments are provided – western classical, rock and those sourced from participants’ region of birth.

Tutors, supporters and project partners will also grow through this experience, as they are equal players. They will gain a better understanding of the challenges these young people face and grow in confidence through engaging with them. Planning and awareness training sessions will be provided for all staff working on the project, and each music session will end with dedicated time for the music team to reflect and evaluate the session.

The project believes that by participating in ‘I Speak Music’, the budding young musicians will grow in self-confidence as well as improving their musical skills and increasing their life opportunities.

Specifically and longer term the project hopes that the young people who take part will be inspired to join and progress onto other Surrey Arts ensembles and groups. This will mean that they will continue to develop what they have learnt and explore other music genres after the project ends.





Posted In  Outreach and  Vocal/instrumental learning/teaching

Girls Rock London

London, United Kingdom

  • Arts Council England
  • Bell Music
  • Fender
  • WeDriveYou
  • National Foundation for Youth Music
  • Novation


'Girls Rock: the all-female music camp taking a stand against sexism' - The Guardian

'Feature: Girls Rock London' - The Girls Are

'A rock school is opening in London' - Dazed

'Women Rock London announce all-female summer camp' - Crack

Girls Rock London: Challenging the under-representation of women in music head on, by increasing opportunity and boosting self esteem - Sound Connections


  • To date, Girls Rock London has run four successful rock camps, where it has seen real impact in terms of continued music-making, and increased self-esteem and confidence levels of participants.
  • Participant surveys measure self-esteem, confidence, resilience and body image before and after the camp. At the 2017 camp, there was a 13% overall rise in scores across the group, and a 46% change in specific areas including improved body image.
  • Participants reported leaving with new friendships and a positive experience of working with people from different backgrounds to their own.

  • 'I came to camp thinking I was going to learn more about an instrument; what I really learned was how much potential I had as a musician and how it increased through collaboration.' (participant)
  • 'It was the most exhilarating and inspiring weekend of my life. I never want this feeling to end. I just want to keep creating and performing music.' (participant)
  • 'I have struggled to find the words to express how grateful and inspired I am by the Girls Rock London team and how much the experience meant to me. If I was an economist I’d lay out the investment and return as unparalleled. I have never been in an environment as supportive, encouraging and uplifting as that at GRL. I think I’ve learnt more about music and creativity than any music or art class in the formal education system. Every member of the team blew me away with their approachability, friendliness, knowledge and skill, encouragement and guidance. (participant)
  • I have seen first-hand the lasting impact that positive encouragement can have on people and how, with enough determination and teamwork, we can create the change we want to see in the world. Thank you, GRL! (volunteer)

  • To improve the confidence and self-esteem of young women and girls. One in four girls aged 14 is depressed, and twice as many 14 and 15 year old girls than boys are unhappy with their appearance. Hospital admissions because of self-harm among girls has risen by 68% in the past decade.
  • To increase the number of women and girls making music. Over the past decade, a reported 95% of Reading and Leeds festival line-ups have been dominated by male acts. 



Girls Rock London (GRL!) is a music project for girls and women in London, part of a movement of rock camps that take place all over the world.

GRL! is united by a desire to achieve gender equality in the music industry and to ensure that all girls and women get the chance to make music. The aims of the project are to empower girls and women – regardless of previous musical experience – to write and perform music, and to build self-confidence.

The programme is a mixture of musical/technical tuition and workshops, which together help to build participants’ self-esteem and confidence, and provide a platform for girls and women to find and develop their voices. Rock Camp is all about trying new things, working together and making lots of NOISE…

GRL! welcomes applicants who self-identify as girls, women, trans* and/or gender non-conforming.

Posted In  AdvocacyOutreach and  Vocal/instrumental learning/teaching



Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, Jennens Road, Birmingham, United Kingdom

The ARCO teachers, including both staff and students from the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, have not just run every musical, administrative, pragmatic and pedagogical detail from the inception of the ARCO Project, but they have fundraised incessantly. The ARCO teachers (mainly RBC Strings Department students) have raised around £50,000 since the project began in 2015. In order to travel to South Africa for both the 2016 and 2017 ARCO Festivals, all Birmingham based ARCO teachers raised their own funds to enable their participation - this included funds for flights, transport, accommodation and subsistence.

In 2016 ARCO teachers used creative ideas and great initiative to attract sponsorship, and in 2017, this creativity took on another dimension. The ARCO Team have paid for weekly String Quartet Lessons for almost eighteen months, food and some South African staff costs during ARCO Festivals, travel and all associated costs and have most recently been fundraising for ARCO Exchange.

Most important of all, the ARCO teachers give up many hours of their precious time every week teaching over Skype, completely for free.

  • To provide regular distance-learning opportunities for talented children in South Africa, who for multiple reasons, do not have access to the same level of musical education as people in Europe. 

West Midlands

ARCO is an innovative alliance between Royal Birmingham Conservatoire and Cape Gate MIAGI Centre for Music (CMCM) in Soweto, Johannesburg.

Established in 2015, the project provides regular distance-learning opportunities for children in South Africa. Weekly individual instrumental lessons, mentoring and string quartet coaching are delivered by a group of sixteen current students and recent graduates from Royal Birmingham Conservatoire via video conferencing systems. Regular events occurring within Birmingham Conservatoires String Department, such as masterclasses, workshops and performances are streamed live to South Africa for the benefit of the CMCM students.

Each summer, teachers from the UK travel to South Africa for the annual ARCO Festival – an immersive musical experience, building on and solidifying skills learnt throughout the year. The festivals of 2016 and 2017 have been enormously successful and truly life-changing experiences for all involved. Plans for the 2018 festival are already underway.

2017 sees the launch of ARCO Exchange, with selected ARCO students being hosted in the UK for specic projects and festivals. So far, partnerships have been established with the Cecil Aronowitz International Viola Competition and Festival, Chetham’s School of Music and Pro Corda – the National School for Young Chamber Musicians. Three students from Soweto will be traveling to England in November 2017 and we are currently in the process of funding further trips for 2018.

In 2017, ARCO piloted a teacher training scheme, welcoming Jan Repko to Soweto to work with ARCO teachers. Enormously successful, we will be continuing the scheme with both Jan and celebrated pedagogue Wiesje Miedama in 2018.

Posted In  Academic learning/teaching

NYMAZ Connect Resound clarinettist

Connect: Resound

North Yorkshire, United Kingdom

Connect:Resound Project Report

  • ''70.1% of the children enjoyed the lesson ‘very much’, 16.4% ‘quite a lot’, and 13.4% only ‘a bit’.'
  • '57.1% of parents/carers said their child enjoyed the lessons ‘very much’, 24.5% stated ‘quite a lot’, 14.3% suggested ‘a bit’ and 4.1% ‘not much.'
  • 'The vast majority of pupils (92.5%) reported practising between lessons. Parents were slightly less positive about the amounts of practice when this figure dropped to 83.7%.''
  • 'Parents gave positive feedback about children’s progress, with 24.5% stating it was ‘very good’, 46.9% that it was ‘good’, and 28.6% that progress was ‘satisfactory’.'
  • 'Most of the children (74.1%) and many parents (68.2%) wanted them to continue to learn their instruments ‘quite a lot’ or ‘very much’. This is notable considering that 79.5% of parents/carers would not have tried to find instrumental lessons for their children had this opportunity not been available.'

Connect: Resound Project Report

'I would very much recommend Connect: Resound as an avenue to access music lessons.' - Headteacher

'The children were engrossed in what they were doing…we are all very impressed with the concept… As a governor I feel there are huge opportunities offered through the internet for
geographically remote schools, small schools with very limited budgets (like ours) and also for specialised teaching, not just of music but of foreign languages… In short – brilliant project well executed.' - Kevin Tasker, School Governor, Hawes CP School

'Really good, actually […] especially the individuals got further than they would in a normal lesson. I think it was because of the kids, I think they really liked doing it over the internet.' - Andy, guitar teacher

'Well, the organisation of it, if the schools on board, it's so much easier […] North Yorkshire being massive and travelling and not getting there, so actually having lessons […] rather than running from school to school […] that was great, in the office, I couldn't
get stuck in traffic.' - Daniel, woodwind teacher

'And I think that has real potential there [for online], in an ideal world […] a combination of both, [an] initial [face-to-face] meeting with the teacher […] then maybe four or five lessons over the internet, and then you have another [face-to-face] meeting, […] I think it's got real potential for […] providing opportunity for those kids that can't, or are not sure about whether they want to do an instrument, to actually make a start.' - Ian Bangay, head, North Yorkshire County

  • To identify a cost-efficient, high quality method of enhancing the music education opportunities on offer to isolated areas.

Yorkshire and Humberside

Connect: Resound explores how digital technologies can be used in rurally isolated areas to provide instrumental tuition, access to live music performances and teacher training.

Developed by NYMAZ in partnership with UCan Play, the action research project explores how digital technologies can be used to deliver music education and enrichment activities to children living in rurally isolated areas.

Following a successful pilot project in North Yorkshire, Connect: Resound expanded to work with music organisations across the country to deliver and further develop this unique approach to online music education, alongside researchers from the University of Hull, who assessed the impact and potential of an online approach to music tuition.

The project has also engaged with music education professionals across the country through training and discussion events exploring the role that online technology can play in helping children and young people to engage with music, and has reached thousands of viewers through a programme of live music broadcasts, delivered online to schools across the country.

Thanks to funding from the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, Connect: Resound is working in partnership with a cohort of Music Education Hubs across the country to develop their approach to delivering online music education as part of their programmes.

Posted In  Music technology projects and  Technology learning/teaching

Sistema Scotland

Sistema Scotland

The Raploch Community Campus, Drip Road, Stirling, United Kingdom

A full list of supporters can be found on page 2 of Sistema Scotland's brochure

  • Big Noise Raploch, Stirling, was established in 2008 and currently engages with almost 500 children and young people
  • Big Noise Govanhill, Glasgow, was established in 2013 and currently engages with almost 800 children
  • Big Noise Torry, Aberdeen, was established in 2015 and currently engages with almost 500 children
  • A typical Big Noise child can be involved in the programme for up to 11 hours a week, 45 weeks each year. That means almost 500 hours of intervention and support a year.

'Sistema Scotland’s Big Noise programme has the potential to significantly enhance participants’ lives, prospects, health and wellbeing through a variety of identified pathways in the long-term. [...] While Big Noise can appear to the casual observer to be like many other arts or music programmes, we encountered a number of factors which, when taken together, potentially make it unique – including its ambition, longevity, intensity and inclusivity.' - Professor Carol Tannahill, Director of the Glasgow Centre for Population Health

'(Child’s Name) can be hard to manage when he’s in my class. But the difference when a Big Noise musician came in! Because it was something he could do, you could just see in his eyes. …Being taught on the violin, he was just so proud of what he could do. That’s a child that stands out in my head for the impact there can be, on a child who’s very hard to reach, in many ways.' - Primary school teacher, Govanhill

'I have never seen a piece of work come into an area, target so many people and have such an impact in such a short period of time.' - NHS Manager, Glasgow

  • To transform children’s lives
  • To empower communities
  • To create a sustainable charity, with permanent benefits


Sistema Scotland is a charity on a mission to create permanent social change in some of the most deprived communities in Scotland.

The El Sistema-inspired initiative uses participation in its Big Noise orchestra programmes to change lives by fostering confidence, discipline, teamwork, pride and aspiration in the children and young people taking part. This enables the children and young people to reach their full potential, leading successful and fulfilled lives. This philosophy has a knock on effect for their families and the wider community in general.

Sistema Scotland’s teams provide an intensive orchestral programme for school-age children and young people. They use a variety of immersive music teaching methods delivered during school time, after school and during the school holidays. Sistema Scotland also provide opportunities for growth such as trips and residentials. Regular performances help to keep the wider community as involved as possible.

Altogether there are around 2,000 children and young people engaging regularly with the three established Sistema Scotland centres. In addition to the Big Noise orchestras attended by children up to 11 hours each week, Sistema Scotland runs Baby Noise and Adult Noise programmes which enable the Sistema Scotland family to reach as many as possible in the communities where we are based.

Posted In  Education

Violin Girls Athens © Angel Ballesteros

Sistema England

England, United Kingdom

  • Sistema England comprises 3,300 musicians aged 0-18 from more than 80 schools.
  • Globally, Sistema-inspired programmes serve an estimated one million people in at least sixty countries. 
  • Between October 2015 and August 2016, the Sistema England Young Leaders membership grew from 35 to 60 musicians.
  • Upwards of 2,000 young musicians and music tutors were able to participate in SMEEC in 2015 thanks to a €200,000 matched funding provision by the EU Culture Programme.


  • 'The energy and the vibe that we get off each other during the camp just energises us and motivates us to keep going, no matter what the challenges are. That’s what’s great about Sistema England.' Simi, Cellist, In Harmony Lambeth, Sistema England Young Leader
  • 'The summer camp was an amazing experience for all our new and current Young Leaders. Throughout the week the kids were able to go beyond the normal expectations of them.' Teacher
  • 'I flew to Sweden with ten children – somehow I managed to lose them all! Luckily, the parents of those children seemed thrilled that I brought back ten mature, responsible and inspired young adults in their place! How is it possible for a group of children to become confident, empowered, broad minded and musically progressed in just one week? El Sistema… Achieving huge things alongside new friends, being given the space to make the right decisions and not be held back by the usual restraints in their day to day lives.' Steve Copley, Music Director, Sistema in Norwich

Sistema England aims within five years to be a recognised leader in the global 'music for change' field through enabling both high 'Musical Return on Investment' and high Social Return on Investment (SROI) for children and young people. Its aims are:

  • To empower children and young people to become agents of their futures and global citizens
  • To enable children and young people to make great music and art together
  • To increase the workforce of engaging and effective teaching artists
  • To strengthen the community of 'music change makers' to spread best practices

Sistema England aims to transform the lives of children, young people and their communities through the power of music-making.

Sistema England’s objectives are:

  • To build a Youth Company that provides high-quality musical progression and life-skills development for the most committed young musicians on Sistema programmes
  • To deliver high-quality teacher training, investing in future leaders of ‘music for change’ work
  • To run innovation labs and action research for music professionals
  • To provide instruments for young musicians in England where otherwise unaffordable

Sistema England organises several projects aimed at both young and experienced practitioners, including:

  • Sistema England Young Leaders – a nationwide orchestra comprising the most skilled members from  In Harmony LambethIn Harmony LiverpoolIn Harmony NewcastleIn Harmony TelfordSistema in Norwich and The Nucleo Project.
  • Youth Music Spotlighting – a project bringing together music teachers from Sistema-inspired programmes in England to learn and share effective practices with each other and subsequently with the wider music education workforce.
  • The Sistema-inspired Music Education and Exchange with Canada (SMEEC) – a European Union Culture Programme funded project allowing children, young people and teachers from In Harmony Lambeth, In Harmony Liverpool, In Harmony Telford & Stoke and Sistema in Norwich to travel and perform outside England.

‘Our young musicians want to make music that is so powerful it influences change – for themselves, together, for others. We are excited to welcome a highly motivational teaching team that can help them achieve this. Each year we get closer to a way of working with young people that leads to electrifying performances, individual empowerment and stronger community. By improving our own practice we want to help others seeking to enable positive change through the arts.’ Fiona Cunningham, CEO of Sistema England.

Posted In  AdvocacyEducation and  Outreach



Clements Hall, Nunthorpe Road, York YO23 1BW, United Kingdom

  • Youth Music
  • Accessible Arts & Media
  • Army Welfare Service
  • Arts Council England
  • Blue Boxt Productions
  • Create Arts Development
  • Dales Jam
  • Digital R&D Fund for the Arts
  • Harrogate Area Home Education Group
  • Harrogate International Festivals
  • Live Music Now
  • Musinc
  • Musicport Festival
  • North Yorkshire County Council
  • North Yorkshire Music Hub
  • Primary Music Network
  • Richmond Jazz Festival 
  • Skipton Extended Learning for All
  • Songwires

In 2016:

  • NYMAZ successfully worked with 2500 children and young people in North Yorkshire.
  • 262 workshops and 48 performances were given in 49 locations across the country. 
  • NYMAZ's membership network grew by 23%.
  • 48 CPD activities were given and 246 individuals were trained.

  • 'It brings together lots of different ages and abilities and allows people to learn off each other.'
  • 'Richmond Jam is a great stepping stone into being a great musician and teaches you a lot about rehearsing and experience being in a band.'
  • As a parent, I can't think of a safer or more inspirational place for young musicians to experiment and develop their skills.'
  • The professional development course has given me confidence to go back to work and explain to staff the huge importance of music in the early years.'
  • 'The CPD opportunities keep me inspired and help me to refresh and improve my current practice.'

  • To provide bespoke high quality music outreach activities in a variety of in, and out-of-school settings across North Yorkshire.
  • To deliver anything from inspirational one-off workshops to longer-term creative projects incorporating staff training, tailored to the particular needs of a given organisation and the age and ability of the children and young people it works with.
  • To work with trusted partner organisations to ensure that young residents have the same life chances as those living in more populated areas.
  • To raise aspirations, develop personal and social skills and enhance career prospects, as well as improving musical ability.
  • To establish professional networks and enable musicians and practitioners to develop their skills, share best practice and network with peers, across a range of specialist sectors.

Yorkshire and Humberside

NYMAZ is a youth music development charity which champions the transformative potential of music for children and young people.

Music has the power to change lives – it can raise aspirations, enable personal and social development, and enhance career prospects. Working with trusted partners, NYMAZ delivers high quality music-making activities across North Yorkshire to those in challenging circumstances, including rural isolation. The project is also committed to strengthening the sector through workforce development, building strategic partnerships and advocating for the benefits of participatory music.

Operational since 2001, NYMAZ’s vision is that all young people in North Yorkshire will have the opportunity to actively engage in music, regardless of their circumstances. It is a strategic partner of Youth Music, one of only 13 in the country, working to create a musically-inclusive England.

As part of a commitment to strengthening the sector in North Yorkshire, NYMAZ runs professional networks which enable musicians and practitioners to develop their skills, share best practice and network with peers. Membership is free and is focused on three specialist areas – Early Years Music (ages 0- 5), Special Education Needs and Disabilities (SEND) and Remote Music Learning.

NYMAZ is a strong advocate for musical inclusion – using research findings the project has shown the importance of informal music activities in terms of life chances and are calling for it to be better supported in rural areas. NYMAZ are also keen to promote digital methods of providing young people in the countryside with high quality, but cost efficient, instrumental tuition and music experiences.

NYMAZ is a registered charity and company limited by guarantee.

Posted In  Education

Musical Futures

Musical Futures

50, Broadway, Westminster, London SW1H 0RG

  • Musical Futures approaches have benefitted 266,742 students since September 2015.
  • 71% of respondents felt that since implementing Musical Futures they have become more effective teachers, and 81% felt that their students have more positive attitudes towards music.
  • 88% of respondents agreed that they would definitely recommend Musical Futures resources and training to other colleagues.
  • 76% of respondents indicated that Musical Futures was one of many websites that they used for resources

(date of survey October 10 2016)

  • 'Musical Futures, an informal learning model initially inspired by research led by Lucy Green from the Institute of Education in London, is held up around the world as a breakthrough in music education. It’s inspiring thousands more young people to enjoy music-making in school.' - Catherine Baker, The Guardian
  • 'I really believe that it’s important we allow everyone the opportunity to access what is often the preserve of a middle class education.  There are lots of challenges in making this happen, one of which is how we enable more students to learn an instrument and understand musical theory without going backwards and having students sitting at keyboards with lots of talking about music instead of playing it.  One of the things we’ve done is look at all the great things that Musical Futures have such as Just Play and Informal Learning and how we can take those ideas and develop a structure to our key stage three that allows for some really strong progression in both performance and understanding of theory.' - Matt Keil, Head of Music, Morpeth School


  1. To refresh and embed our innovative learning models in the secondary sector through professional development, new approaches, resources and supporting and growing the project's network
  2. To develop and rollout a Musical Futures approach for primary school music
  3. To establish an annual professional development event delivered in partnership with others

Out of school settings

  1. To develop new partnerships to deliver professional development programmes for those working with disadvantaged young people
  2. To deliver an income-generating professional development Musical Futures programme for workplace learning


  1. To grow a sustainable income
  2. To strengthen networks nationally and internationally
  3. To build the Musical Futures brand in the UK and overseas
  4. To better understand the project's impact and outcomes


Musical Futures provides universal and targeted learner-led opportunities to create music by supplying training and tools to primary and secondary schools.

Musical Futures is a non-profit organisation providing support through training and resources – both free and paid for – for those that work in schools and other music education organisations, with the aim of making music-making accessible to all young people.

The project aims to help schools transform mandatory music teaching, and works in partnership to use the power of creating music to affect individual and social change. Its vision is for a future where everybody benefits from the value of music. 

The project organises workshops for students, teachers, and music hub workers, including:

  • Just Play – ideal for building essential musical and instrumental skills in both primary and secondary stages of education from years 4 – 9.
  • Musical Futures Steps to Success in GCSE Music – practical ideas for teaching Key Stage 4 music that are musical as well as theoretical.
  • Find Your Voice – a course for teachers exploring Musical Futures’ practical, hands-on approach to embedding vocal work in the classroom, supported by mobile technology.

Musical Futures is recognised as a Global Innovation in Education by Finnish educational organisation HundrED. 


Posted In  Academic learning/teaching and  Education

BBC Ten Pieces

BBC Ten Pieces

London, United Kingdom


  • '... a new initiative for UK primary schools that aims to inspire a generation of children to enjoy classical music and use it as a stimulus to their own creativity.' - The Guardian
  • 'Events like this really help local young people to develop confidence and self-esteem, which allows them to reach their potential and as a council we are lucky to have such close relationships with our schools to support this goal, and this concert really showed how successful this has been. I am so proud of our children and young people who have continued to develop in musical education.' - Councillor Tom Bruce, Cabinet Member for Education, Children and Youth Services, Hounslow Council

Ten Pieces opens up the world of classical music to 7-14 year-olds across the UK and inspire them to develop their own creative responses to the music.

Ten Pieces helps young people to get creative with classical music and develop imaginative responses. The project is open to schools, home educators or any kind of arts organisation.

The project comes with a wealth of support resources:

  • Ten Pieces films; these consist of ten performances of classical music – there are twenty pieces available in total.
  • free DVD box set of the performances is available. The performances are between two and ten minutes in duration.
  • The pieces are supported by free downloadable teaching resources including lesson plans, composer information, cross-curricular resources and simplified orchestral arrangements
  • Catch up on what’s been happening in the last two jam-packed years in this clip and in Ten Pieces’ photo gallery.

These resources are designed for 7 to 14 year-olds and have taken into account the KS2, First Level, Second Level and the KS3 and Third Level curriculums in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland. Lesson plans are labelled with their appropriate age group.

Ten Pieces has additional support from a range of music and arts education stakeholders and is delivered in partnership with Ten Pieces Champions. The Champions are Music Education Hubs, Music Services, orchestras, film, dance and other arts organisations from across the UK working in collaboration with the BBC to introduce classical music to the next generation. They have signed up to Champion the project and work together on delivering music and arts education to every young person throughout the nations and regions.

‘Ten Pieces marks the biggest commitment the BBC has ever made to music education in the country. We hope that the project will inspire a generation of children to learn more about classical music.’ – Roger Wright, Controller, BBC Radio 3 and Director, BBC Proms

‘Music has the power to transform lives, and we are hoping that this project will be a catalyst for all kinds of creativity in primary schools across the country, as well as providing an inspirational way into classical music.’ – Katy Jones, Executive Producer, BBC Learning

Posted In  Academic learning/teachingPerformance and  Vocal/instrumental learning/teaching

Meet the Music

Meet the Music

Piano House, Brighton Terrace, London SW9, United Kingdom

  • Bethlem and Maudsley Hospital School

  • Breathe Arts Health Research

  • The Christopher Rowbotham Charitable Trust
  • The Douglas Heath Eves Charitable Trust
  • The Dunhill Medical Trust

  • Evelina Hospital School

  • The February Foundation
  • Great Ormond Street Hospital School

  • Harrow Music Education Hub

  • Headway East London

  • The Human Trafficking Foundation
  • Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience (King's College London)

  • Jewish Care

  • MariaMarina Foundation
  • Orchestras Live

  • Queen Mary University of London

  • The Richard Hickox Foundation
  • Royal Hospital for Neurodisability

  • St Joseph’s Hospice

  • Task Force Trust
  • Tower Hamlets Arts and Music Education Service (THAMES)

  • University College London Hospital School

  • 'Some of the kids had never publicly performed before. It was a real milestone for their confidence. To be given the opportunity was just fantastic.' Julia Schubert, Westgate Youth Group, Ipswich


  • To work in care homes, hospitals and hospices, honing the necessary skills to allow music to aid in the healing process and provide an outlet for those who need it most.
  • To work alongside local music hubs to deliver unique creative projects and first-time orchestral experiences with young people who have significantly lower levels of arts engagement.
  • To address the economic and cultural barriers that may prevent young people from discovering classical music, workshop participants work directly with our musicians to programme and produce a range of exciting and inspiring concerts.


City of London Sinfonia‘s Meet the Music programme spends over 170 days a year in the community making music with 14,000+ people.

Current Meet the Music projects include:

  • Wellbeing through Music. This takes place in healthcare settings, where City of London Sinfonia (CLS) musicians deliver performances, often at patients’ bedsides, as well as end-of-term projects for young children in major London teaching hospitals such as Great Ormond Street. They also undertake regular visits to care homes in North London, making music with Holocaust survivors or people suffering from dementia. Plans for the next three years include creating a body of research around the effectiveness of these projects, going beyond the anecdotal and providing clinical evidence as to their effectiveness.
  • Growth through Music. This sees CLS musicians working with very young children (aged 3-7) in communities that are geographically or economically isolated, including rural Suffolk and Tower Hamlets. Working closely with schools and music education hubs, CLS addresses a significant gap in provision for children at a crucial time in their academic and social development, performing for children and families through its Crash Bang Wallop! and Lullaby concert series and creating interactive first-time orchestral experiences for teenagers and young people through its First Time Live projects in collaboration with Orchestras Live.

Header photo: Lullaby concert in CLS’s Growth through Music programme © Paul Coghlin

Posted In  EducationHealth & wellbeingOutreach and  Performance



Somerset House, Strand, London WC2R, United Kingdom

Previous Portfolio composers include:

  • Chandra Chapman, Artur Vidal and Dan Scott with the Bohman Brothers and Richard Thomas
  • Ben Tassie, Chris Roe, Eugene Birman and Lee Westwood with Aluminium Music and Joby Burgess
  • Chloe Knibbs, Daniel Kidane and Edward Nesbitt with The Riot Ensemble
  • Pia Palme, Luke Nickel, Michael Perrett and Charlie Usher with EXAUDI
  • Seth Bennett, Rachel Musson, Shelly Knotts, Julie Kjaer, Shaun Blezard and Anton Hunter with Steve Beresford
  • Eloise Gynn, Lee Westwood and Clay Gold with MUSARC
  • Egidija Medeksaite, Eugene Birman, Michael Cryne with Ruthless Jabiru
  • Beatrice Dillon and Matthias Kispert with Wet Sounds
  • Bernard Hughes, Sarah Lianne Lewis and Na'ama Zisser with Juice
  • Benjamin Gait, Ben Gaunt, Charlotte Harding and Patrick Jones with Ensemble 10:10
  • Kate Whitley, Sakoto Doi-Luck and Kim Ashton with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment

  • 'Working with Sound and Music on their Portfolio scheme has shown us a dizzying array of new composing talent. In choosing Rasmus Zwicki and Amble Skuse we anticipate two wildly exciting new Paraorchestra premieres. These two fierce creative spirits could not be more welcome!' Charles Hazlewood, conductor and founder of the British Paraorchestra
  • 'I am most excited to work with Portfolio because it enables me to take the leap from composing for dance, theatre, film or whatever to writing concert music. This will give me a chance to try and manifest all these abstract ideas I have, to experiment and explore new territory with the quartet, getting mentoring and support and hopefully ending up with work which is challenging, beautiful and modern.' Dom Bouffard, composer
  • 'As a composer who also performs as an electric guitarist, the opportunity that this Portfolio project offered to work in the capacity of a composer with four other electric guitarists was very attractive to me indeed. It feels like this opportunity has come at a particularly important time for both elements of my practice; after a substantial period of time of focussing solely on my work as a composer, I have recently become more active as a guitarist again, and I think this project gives me a very interesting chance to examine these two elements of my practice in relation to one another.' Alex Mackay, composer

  • To allow composers to develop a portfolio of compositions in collaboration with professional ensembles and presenting organisations and deliver this work to public audiences.



Sound and Music‘s Portfolio scheme provides a key development opportunity for composers to create new work with and for some of the UK’s leading ensembles and presenters of new music.

Portfolio enables them to develop their portfolio of compositions and gain vital artistic and practical insight and experience in working with professional ensembles and presenting organisations and delivering new work to public audiences.

Selected composers are invited to develop a small-scale, short new work for a collaborative partner. These are developed through a series of workshops during which the composer works in close collaboration with the performers supported by an experienced composer mentor. The process culminates in a public performance of the new work within the ensemble’s performance schedule.

Posted In  EducationNetworking and  Performance