Friday Afternoons

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.

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  • 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.

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

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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

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.

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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

2018-12-24

2018-04-02

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.

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Posted In  Outreach 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.

London

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.

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