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Music Education UK bringing everyone together

February 2012/Issue 2

Why enlightened Heads value music The Mayor’s Fund for Young Musicians Natural sounds, music and cross-curricular learning Partnership in Hertfordshire Ongaku music Digital Learning, News, Reviews & Listings

A new beginning? Our guide to the National Plan for Music Education in England

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Music Education UK Contents Regulars 5 Editorial – A plan is born 6 News 22 A day in the life London Schools Symphony Orchestra cellist, Ruby Moore 51 State of the Union Opportunities for musicians who teach 54 Listings

Features 10 Count Us In – making music part of a School Improvement Strategy The Hertfordshire Music Partnership Programme

33 Hearing the hill – natural sounds, music and cross-curricular learning Exploring the aural landscape

30 Sibelius 7 Tim Hallas looks at what the latest update has to offer

37 Voice from the front One Primary teacher’s call to action

32 The Apptitude test Soundrop and Auditorium

38 Ongaku music – group composition in Japan and the UK Composers and long-time collaborators, Hugh Nankivell and Makoto Nomura 41 Young Champions Online leadership skills with Musical Futures 44 Singing with Pre-school children to develop vocabulary knowledge A new study from Canada 46 Keys to the future Work-related learning with Arts Inform

15 Aspiration, achievement and school improvement – music can make the difference Anita Holford reports on three Secondary schools where music is at the top of the agenda

48 Music, health and well-being The Sound Sense perspective

19 Music Services – survival of the fittest? Peter Baker asks if Music Services need to change to survive

25 Editorial Technology Editor, Tim Hallas, welcomes readers

25 Mayor’s Fund for Young Musicians An introduction to Boris Johnson’s latest initiative

The centre point

28 Hip hop – language and lyrics, creativity and confidence Charanga’s Mark Burke tells us why ‘hip hop works’

Reviews 52 Mrs Carey’s Concert The much-lauded Australian film about Whole School music 52 The Genius of Natural Childhood Sally Goddard-Blythe on the musical secrets to thriving children 53 Integrated Practice: Coordination, Rhythm & Sound Pedro de Alcantara’s book and website exploring the holistic nature of learning an instrument

National Plan for Music Education – special pull-out section... 2 A new beginning? Our guide to the NPME in England 5 Comments from the sector

Next issue published May 2012 Subscribe to Music Education UK at

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |


Music Education UK A plan is born F

irst of all, a big apology for the late publication of this second edition of Music Education UK magazine. This is down to the long-awaited publication of the government’s National Plan for Music Education, The Importance of Music, which was due to be published in July 2011 before being delayed to the beginning of October and, finally, the end of November. While we were all set to go to press in October, we felt it was vital to wait until the NPME had been published, hence the delay. We spent the time setting up a new information resource on our website at together with a dedicated Twitter hashtag, #nationalmusicplan. With the continuing uncertainty and speculation in the sector, our blog and Twitter following has grown rapidly and @musiceduk now has over 2,500 followers.

As soon as the plan was published, we got to work collating responses from commentators across the sector. You can find these in the middle of this magazine along with our handy Guide to the National Plan for Music Education. Other responses include Peter Baker’s Music Services – survival of the fittest on page 19 and Jackie Schneider’s call to action in Voice from the front on page 37. Reflecting the importance attached to it by the government, music technology has a special annex within the NPME. Our own technology section, The centre point, includes a report by Mark Burke on Charanga’s work with hip hop artist, Max Wheeler (page 28), as well as a review of Sibelius 7 by our technology editor, Tim Hallas (page 30). Tim’s regular column, The Apptitude test, also looks at what’s available for music educators in the world of Apps (page 32). And so to the rest of the magazine. On top of our regular features, A day in the life (in which 16-year-old Ruby Moore tells us about her trip to Aberdeen International Youth Festival with the London Schools Symphony Orchestra on page 22) and State of the Union (Diane Widdison’s regular MU update on page 51), we’ve got a smorgasbord of contributions from right across the music education sector. From the formal sector, we have Anita Holford’s special report, Aspiration, achievement and school improvement – music can make the difference, in which she interviews Secondary Head teachers who have put music at the forefront of their student offering (page 15); Nick Denham’s Editor Cathy Tozer Digital Learning Editor Tim Hallas Contributors Peter Baker, Sue Beckett, Steven Berryman, Mark Burke, Abigail D’Amore, Kathryn Deane, Nick Denham, Anita Holford, Sandra MacNiven, Ruby Moore, Richard Morris, Hugh Nankivell, Catherine Pestano, Catherine Rose, Jackie Schneider, Jennifer Sullivan, Gordon Turnbull, Diane Widdison Follow us on


Publisher Ian Clethero Design Jules Richardson Page by Page Design

description of the Hertfordshire Music Partnership Programme, Count Us In – making music part of a School Improvement Strategy (page 10); and Gordon Turnbull’s exploration of the aural landscape with Primary school children, Hearing the hill – natural sounds, music and cross-curricular learning (page 33). From the informal sector, we have three reports on ground-breaking initiatives for young people: Abigail D’Amore on Musical Futures’ Young Champions programme (page 41); Catherine Rose on Arts Inform’s workrelated learning projects (page 46); and Richard Morris on the recently launched Mayor’s Fund for Young Musicians (page 25). And finally, from the non-formal sector, we have Hugh Nankivell’s description of his work with Japanese composer and improviser, Makoto Nomura, Ongaku music – group composition in Japan and the UK (page 38); Catherine Pestano’s article on Music, health and well-being (page 48); and Jennifer Sullivan’s case study about the effects of singing on language development, Singing with Pre-school children to develop vocabulary knowledge (page 44). I picked the word smorgasbord to describe this rich and diverse collection of articles and opinion pieces because I felt it brings with it a sense that music education across the UK is a feast, a spread, a vast table groaning with good things. In England, the NPME is the government’s attempt to make sure that spread is distributed as fairly and cost-effectively as possible across the country. A plan is born. But, to continue the culinary metaphor, one vital ingredient is missing: a confirmation that music will remain within the National Curriculum. Encouragingly, The Framework for the National Curriculum report by the Expert Panel for the National Curriculum review (December 2011) recommends that music should be a Foundation subject at Key Stages 1-3 and, further, that ‘education in art and music should be supported in Key Stage 4 through statutory requirement’. Let’s hope that these recommendations are heeded and thereby ensure that the NPME ‘initiative’ does not pass its sell-by date. Cathy Tozer Subscriptions & distribution Yvonne Barwick Print & digital advertising Music Education UK is published by Zone New Media Limited Suite 6, 43 Bedford Street, London WC2H 9HA, UK Telephone: +44 (0)20 3303 0888 Asia-Pacific representative Zone New Media Asia Pte Limited 8 Marina View, Asia Square Tower 1, Level 07-05, Singapore 018960

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

International music education conferences and trade exhibitions UK musiclearninglive!2012 12-13 March 2012 Institute of Education, London Asia musiclearninglive!Asia 21-24 October 2013 Singapore Expo, Singapore Europe musiclearninglive!Europe 2014. Details to be announced


News FMS and NAME to merge The Federation of Music Services (FMS) and the National Association of Music Educators (NAME) are in detailed talks with the aim of creating a single organisation. The proposed merger is a first step towards reducing the plethora of different membership organisations as recommended by the Henley Review in February 2011. The new body, which is yet to be named, will aim to support all practitioners and organisations across the sector. The practicalities are the subject of a detailed consultation with the members of both organisations. It is planned to have the new organisation established by Autumn 2012.

•••••••••••••• Classic FM honours UK’s top music teachers Classic FM has honoured six top UK music teachers at its 13th Annual Music Teacher of the Year Awards which were held at the Music for Youth Schools Prom from 7-9 November 2011. The Right Hon Michael Gove MP, Secretary of State for Education, presented the Primary School Music Teacher of the Year Award to Kathryn Smith of Silkstone Common Junior and Infant School, Barnsley, South Yorkshire, and the Secondary School Music Teacher of the Year Award to Sheila Cornall of Wycombe High School, Buckinghamshire.

Photo above: Classic FM Music Teacher of the Year winners with Michael Gove (left) and Margherita Taylor (right)


This year’s Peripatetic/Private Music Teacher of the Year Award was presented to Fran Sixsmith of Warrington Schools’ Arts and Culture Service by Sarah Teather MP, Minister of State for Children and Families. Sheila Oglethorpe, a teacher who has specialised in teaching music to dyslexic pupils was presented with the Special Education Needs Music Teacher of the Year Award. Finally, Tim Loughton MP, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Children and Families, presented John Hall of Norton Knatchbull School, Kent, with the Lifetime Achievement Award. A special award was given by the judges to Matthew Hunt of Kingstone High School, Herefordshire, as New Music Teacher of the Year. Classic FM’s Managing Director, Darren Henley, said: ‘There can be a tendency for music teachers to be the unsung heroes of the music world yet without them, many young people would not have music introduced into their childhoods in a structured way. Music has the power to touch our lives in a far more complex way than many subjects that we study at school and gives us life skills far beyond what we learn in the classroom. Our Awards have been created to reward those music teachers for their work in instilling a passion for their subject into a new generation of music lovers.’

•••••••••••••• Culture Minister to speak at musiclearninglive!2012 conference The Minister for Culture, Communications and Creative

Industries, Ed Vaizey, will speak at Music Education UK’s national musiclearninglive!2012 conference. In London for the first time, the fifth musiclearninglive! event will take place at the Institute of Education on 12 & 13 March. It is the first major conference to take place after the publication of the National Plan for Music Education in November 2011. Ed Vaizey is joined by keynote speakers, Jude Kelly, Artistic Director of the Southbank Centre, Munira Mirza, the Mayor of London’s Strategic Advisor for Youth and Culture, and James Frankel, President of the Association for Technology in Music Instruction (USA), as well as 40 other presenters.

•••••••••••••• Trinity College London launches new Rock & Pop music qualifications An innovative new Rock & Pop syllabus is available from Trinity College London and includes graded exams for guitar, bass, drums, keyboards and vocals (Initial to Grade 8). Developed in partnership with two of the world’s leading music publishers, the new syllabus features an impressive roster of rock and pop styles and artists ranging from The Rolling Stones, The Kinks and Joni Mitchell to Radiohead, Muse and Rihanna. Each exam is supported by a songbook including a CD with demo and backing tracks, performance notes and guidance on technical skills. Additionally, an array of online resources is available including music downloads, blogs and forums.

Performance is very much at the core of the new syllabus, reflecting the way many rock and pop musicians learn. Candidates will perform three songs and complete one of two Sessions Skills. Those with songwriting

ambitions can opt to perform one of their own songs in the exam and singers have the option of performing self-accompanied. Instrumentalists can also sing the vocal lines where appropriate if they choose to do so. Songs have been carefully selected to demonstrate specific musical skills such as funk drum grooves in Cee Lo Green’s Forget You and double-stopped harmonics in the bass line from Rage Against the Machine’s Born Of A Broken Man. Trinity CEO, Sarah Kemp, said: ‘I have no doubt that this radical and inclusive new Rock & Pop syllabus will breathe new life into music education, breaking down many of the barriers currently in place. We’ve responded quickly and creatively to a clear sea change in our key markets around the globe – rock and pop music is now the staple diet of many young musicians and this new syllabus will encourage them to perform and study using a suite of carefully selected graded

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

material from some of the greatest rock and pop artists.’

of the popular music category and the chance to appear on the next BRIT Awards album.


Live and Unsigned Acts are being urged to enter at as places are in high demand and auditions are limited. With £100,000 in prizes, winners get the chance to play at the Grand Final at the O2 in July 2012 which is incorporated into Live Fest, London’s biggest indoor festival. Other prizes include festival slots in the UK, Canada, Italy, Latvia and Dublin and a comprehensive consultation package with Future Music, including social marketing, image, brand and access to industry contacts.

Competitions vie to showcase musical talent Two nationwide competitions are vying to showcase Britain’s young musical talent. Voting opened in October 2011 to find the winner of Next BRIT thing, a music competition for young people aged 11-19 backed by the UK music industry, the BRIT Awards and the government. Meanwhile, auditions for Live and Unsigned, the UK’s biggest unsigned music competition for original artists, began again in January 2012. Next BRIT thing Entrants have been able to upload audio and video entries to since Monday 19 September 2011 with over a thousand entries already received. Musicians of any genre are being encouraged to record and upload their performances with two categories for the competition – popular and classical music – plus an additional award for composition. A rolling chart of the most-voted for entries in the previous seven days is published online with regional charts covering the South of England, the Midlands, the North of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The top 30 most popular acts in each category in each region will form a long-list to be assessed by an expert panel with up to six acts taking part in regional eliminations. These will be held at special one-day sessions where competitors will get to play in front of the judges as well as receiving coaching and one-to-one feedback on their performances. The regional events take place in the first week of February 2012 with the finalists going forward to the national final at the O2 Indigo in March 2012. Prizes on offer include the chance to record at Abbey Road Studios for the winner

Acts that make it through the audition stage will get to perform to industry judges, A&R associates and celebrity guests at some of the UK's most prestigious venues. Judges set to join the panel in 2012 include Radio 1 DJs, Annie Nightingale, Tom Deacon and Daniel P Carter, Kerrang’s Alex Baker and Happy Mondays star, Bez.

•••••••••••••• NYCoS musicianship programme receives ABRSM endorsement The National Youth Choir of Scotland (NYCoS) has announced that its popular Go for Bronze/Silver/Gold musicianship programme has been endorsed by ABRSM. A successful pass at Go

for Gold level will be accepted as a substitute for the ABRSM Grade 5 Theory/Musicianship/Jazz requirement for progression to Grade 6 Practical. NYCoS’s Go for series offers a carefully graded programme of essential musicianship skills using the principles of Zoltán Kodály. Initially developed for choir use, this course helps to establish fundamental musical skills for both singers and instrumentalists. Each workbook is intended to take a year in parallel with choir or classroom activities, although the pace may vary to accommodate differing abilities. NYCoS Chief Executive, Joan Gibson, said: ‘An endorsement by an organisation of this stature is a real accolade for NYCoS and is acknowledgement of the visionary work of Christopher Bell and Lucinda Geoghegan. I am so pleased that the high standards of musicianship gained by our choir members are being truly recognised.’ Nigel Scaife, Syllabus Director at ABRSM, said: ‘I am delighted that ABRSM is able to formally recognise NYCoS’s excellent musicianship programme. The Go for Gold level adds a further option to Grade 5 Practical Musicianship, Jazz or Music Theory as a prerequisite for Grade 6 Practical. The NYCoS programme offers the kind of

Massed NYCoS Area Choirs on stage at Glasgow Royal Concert Hall. Photo courtesy of Drew Farrell

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

holistic and balanced curriculum that best supports the development of well-rounded musicians. This is very much in tune with ABRSM’s objectives and we look forward to strengthening our partnership with NYCoS in the coming years.’ NYCoS, which celebrated its 15th anniversary in 2011, has also announced plans to deliver a series of module-based courses on Kodály musicianship – the first of its kind in Scotland – in partnership with the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (RCS). The classes will be delivered by Kodály educator and NYCoS Education Consultant, Lucinda Geoghegan, and will provide tuition on the philosophies of Zoltán Kodály in both personal musicianship and educational pedagogy.

•••••••••••••• Music charity wins battle to defend identity Music charity, Rhythmix, has won a battle to defend its identity following the creation of a band using the charity’s name on ITV’s The X Factor. The challenge to the charity, which had used the name for twelve years, reveals the precarious position of charitable organisations when their intellectual property or activities become of interest to commercial entities. Although Rhythmix has a proven historical record of trading under its name, delivering many of the services which the audience of X Factor would expect from its contestants (such as concerts, recordings and merchandise), the ownership of a trademark for the name was not in itself sufficient to prevent the creators of X Factor, in the shape of Simco Ltd, seeking to register the name. Simco elected to test how far the charity was prepared to go to protect its identity, using the trademark application process to force Rhythmix to choose to


made a donation to Rhythmix and withdrawn its trademark application. For more information, see 1/11/official-announcement-rhythmixand-syco.html


Guitar student at Rhythmix

legally oppose Simco’s acquisition of the identity or to change its own name. Had they been successful, permission to carry out the activities of the charity would have been at the discretion of Simco, effectively preventing the charity from continuing to use its established name. The case attracted significant public pressure with more than one million people reading or responding to an Open Letter to Simon Cowell released by the charity which was thrust into the public spotlight by Stephen Fry, Rizzle Kicks and Enter Shikari. The programme backed down and the charity successfully defended itself. However, the behaviour of the programme-makers raises important questions for charities regarding their ability to defend their identities. To what extent can a charity afford to defend its identity from commercial business interests? Who pays when charities and commercial enterprises clash? And to what extent can society expect commercial interests to unilaterally respect the trading position and vulnerability of charities? At the time of writing*, the charity is still waiting to hear what Simco intends to do about legal costs. In the event that the company refuses to accept those costs, the charity is faced with a further dilemma – whether to pursue legal means to forcibly regain its costs or whether to turn to the public for donations to cover costs forced upon it by a commercial entity. *Since the time of writing, Syco has

Blackpool Music Service wins Major Trophy at 2011 NMC LA Music Education Awards The 2011 National Music Council (NMC) Local Authority Music Education Awards took place on Monday 7 November at London's Southbank Centre. Sponsored by Paritor, the awards highlight the

Southampton, Staffordshire and Tower Hamlets by Managing Director of Classic FM and author of the government’s Review of Music Education in England, Darren Henley. Robin Osterley, Chair of the Awards Panel, said: ‘We were delighted that this year’s award scheme elicited more applications than we have ever had before and we are very grateful to all those Local Authorities who took the trouble to apply in the midst of a very busy schedule. At a time when music education is undergoing a comprehensive review and when financial

outstanding commitment to jazz education in 2010/11 from jazz singer and educator, Tina May. Devon Music Service was awarded a special trophy from Paritor as a reward for a record of five Diplomas on the trot, three of which were accorded Special Merit status. Ivor Widdison, Chair of the Jazz Services’ Awards Panel, and his colleagues on the panel, Andrea Vicari (Trinity Laban College of Music and Drama), Dr Catherine Tackley (Open University) and Bill Martin (Yamaha Music Education), paid tribute to the above Music Services and to those of Bolton, East Riding, Gloucestershire, Kirklees, Manchester, Oxfordshire, Perth & Kinross, Tower Hamlets and Wigan.

•••••••••••••• First musiclearninglive!Asia conference in 2013

The Blackpool Team © Gilead Limor

work of Local Authority music departments throughout Britain. The NMC Major Trophy Award was awarded to Blackpool (pictured) for outstanding work during the past year. Blackpool students, Becky Sheehan, Maisy Davies and Brandon Hindle, provided music during the awards ceremony.

pressures are so great, we would do well to remember that there are so many authorities out there doing their level best, sometimes with limited resources, to provide outstanding opportunities for young people to learn music and, most importantly, make music.'

Andrew White, Music Adviser, Blackpool, said: 'The prestigious NMC Major Trophy Award will have a massive positive impact upon all involved in Blackpool Music Service. This award will allow us to collectively celebrate our achievements, have pride in what we do and increase our personal aspirations. We are proud and elated by this wonderful news.'

The NMC LA Music Education Awards Scheme (co-ordinated with the assistance of the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities and the Federation of Music Services) has been in existence for over 35 years. The scheme includes a special set of awards for jazz education – the Jazz Services’ Will Michael Diplomas – and these were presented at a separate ceremony on Thursday 1 December at the Royal Academy of Music.

Diplomas of Merit were also presented to Bolton, Devon, East Ayrshire, East Lothian, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, Oxfordshire,

Aberdeenshire, Devon, East Renfrewshire, Lincolnshire and Southampton Music Services all received Diplomas of Merit for their

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

The first international musiclearninglive!Asia conference will take place in Singapore in October 2013. Presented by Music Education UK’s sister company, Music Education Singapore, the event will run over four days and include delegates from across the Asia-Pacific region with an international team of speakers, presenters and performers. Conference partners and sponsors include the Liszt Academy, ABRSM and Trinity College; the Programme Director is David Price OBE.


iPad edition launching in March Following the launch of Music Education UK magazine in print in 2011, the magazine will be available in iPad format from the beginning of March 2012. Full information will be available on the Music Education UK website.


Count Us In –

making music part of a School Improvement Strategy The Hertfordshire Music Partnership Programme, Count Us In, has been successful in developing new ways for pupils to engage in learning, leading to improved attainment and attendance levels as well as more positive attitudes to school life. The programme’s success has been dependent on the partnership between Hertfordshire Music Service, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestras Live and, most importantly, the energy, enthusiasm and expertise of teachers, pupils and their families and carers. It has resulted in a body of learning and evidence that will be used to shape other emerging partnership programmes in the county as well as in the new Hertfordshire Music Education Hub, says Hertfordshire Music Service’s Head of Participation and Inclusion, Nick Denham. An unforgettable learning experience ertfordshire’s Count Us In was an innovative music education partnership programme that ran between October 2009 and November 2010 with funding from the Department for Children, Schools and Families (now DfE). Nine Hertfordshire Secondary schools joined the programme which aimed to embed music into Hertfordshire’s Raising Aspirations and Achievement Strategy by supporting Primary to Secondary transition in specific schools and so provide positive images of those schools for prospective parents and visitors.


The focus was on collaborative investment in and support for young people in local schools. Professional musicians worked alongside students and school staff to establish and sustain creative ensembles in Year 7. Most students were choosing an instrument for the first time with existing instrumentalists often opting to learn a new instrument as well. Their compositions were created for local concerts, putting performance at the centre of the learning process. In addition, the work was expanded to include out-of-school programmes in three key settings in partnership with Youth Connexions and extended school consortia.

The programme culminated in a Celebration Concert at Stevenage Arts and Leisure Centre in November 2010. There was a sensational combined ensemble of 180 young musicians showcasing their compositions alongside their Heads of Music, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra (RPO) players and Music Service teachers. This was the culmination of an initiative that actively involved 452 students in 176 workshops with a combined concert audience of over 1,000. The performance showcases at the end of the programme provided excellent opportunities to demonstrate the impact of the project. Teachers, parents and pupils themselves recognised the level of professionalism, commitment and sheer enthusiasm by all the participants across the events. The appreciation by pupils across school communities of their peers was invaluable for growing respect, community cohesion and mutual appreciation. It is not surprising, following the investment by all parties and the quality of the musicians involved in the programme, that more than 80% of our young participants said they wanted to play an instrument afterwards.

Count Us In concerts, July 2010, in Borehamwood (above) and Hatfield (top of page). Photos courtesy of Sue Lacey


Making a difference to schools While this substantial programme included challenges for everyone involved, both the

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

Count Us In Celebration Concert in Stevenage, November 2010. Photo courtesy of Sue Lacey

key opportunity and concern were highlighted by Head teachers at participating schools: ‘I think composing and making music are highlights of education that students will always remember and that hopefully will affect their lives in years to come.’ ‘I felt most strongly that the message of how creative ways of learning do not slow down learning but deepen it needs to be ‘proved’ to those outside the arts, especially fact-heavy subjects e.g. science.’ The project demonstrated beneficial effects on the wider school community. Count Us In generally brought kudos and profile to schools and it was noted that the ‘Royal’ in Royal Philharmonic Orchestra made an impact in initiating discussions with busy school staff. Non-music teaching staff in one school noted the significant impact on and benefit to pupils who struggled in academic subjects. Heads of Music agreed that Count Us In brought improved attitudes to, and discipline in, school as well as an increase in parental involvement in other parts of school life after many families had attended their first ever concert due to this initiative. Young participants gained many skills through the project, including teamwork, improved concentration spans and self-discipline. A key feature for one Head

of Music was not just the new musical skills her students had learned but their ability to use them simultaneously: taking visual direction, listening, interpreting, reading music and improvising, all under pressure/scrutiny. One Head of Music commented with mock horror: ‘What have we done?! That student is transformed – she is now full of confidence around the school and is constantly asking for more music!’ Making a difference in the future While the delivery of the Count Us In programme reflected local needs and resources, the buy-in by senior school management to the project as well as sympathetic and flexible timetabling significantly influenced the activities. The schools could also identify with important features of the orchestral musicians’ engagement of their students which had useful applications in other parts of school life. Building musical complexity from simple building blocks and highlighting the balance of both passion and control in the discipline of playing in an ensemble complemented other subjects. Over a year on, the organisations that formed the Count Us In partnership are still supporting this work. The ensembles are being sustained in most of the schools by the Heads of Music and Music Service teachers and vulnerable learners are being proactively identified for support

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

through the Music Service Remission of Fees Scheme. Heads of Music are being told about practice materials for ensembles relevant to all abilities of student in all schools while schools who were not involved have been enthusiastic about joining in future collaborations with orchestral musicians. They recognise that their involvement will give their Music Departments extra profile within the school and its wider community. Pupils also offered some sound advice on how future pupils could get involved: ‘Tell them how good it is – you could suddenly realise that you could be really good in playing this instrument… and you could grow up to become musicians.’ continued on page 13

Count Us In concert in Borehamwood, July 2010. Photo courtesy of Sue Lacey


continued from page 11 Hertfordshire Music Service, Orchestras Live and the RPO have since completed two creative composition projects, one with

Count Us In concert in Borehamwood, July 2010. Photo courtesy of Sue Lacey

Education Hub. Keen to draw in a representative group of music education providers, this forum will include schools, community musicians and professional music organisations. We expect that this opportunity will lead to collaboration with other nationwide initiatives including Musical Futures and Musical Bridges.

Orchestras Live Orchestras Live’s mission is to inspire, motivate and empower the widest range of people through excellent live orchestral music.

James Dickinson, Head of Hertfordshire Music Service, has already observed that the experience and outcomes of this major programme have helped raise awareness across the Local Authority and in schools of the significant benefits for students and teachers in embedding music at the heart of a school. Count Us In will have a legacy that will impact on the Music Service’s strategy for all Key Stages and transition in the future.

The Musical Futures Transition Project The Musical Futures Transition Project uses a piece of music (The Passenger by Iggy Pop) to bridge the transition divide between Primary/Elementary and Secondary/High school. transition+project

Hertfordshire’s music education partners are looking forward to sustaining memorable and life-transforming learning experiences for all of our young people. For further information about the project:

young composers and another with a youth orchestra with more collaboration promised for 2012. In July 2011, the RPO completed a mentoring programme with community musicians and young people in St Albans. In the light of the Henley Review, Hertfordshire Music Service has also been busy setting up the county’s Music

Hertfordshire Music Service

Department for Education

Musical Bridges: transforming transition Musical Bridges is a three-year national initiative designed to improve young people’s experiences of school transition between Primary and Secondary school with a special emphasis on their musical progression. The programme is supported by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and Youth Music. About the author Nick Denham is the Head of Participation and

The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra RPO resound is one of the most diverse community and education programmes in the UK.

Inclusion for Hertfordshire Music Service. He has also worked as the Community Arts Development Officer for Three Rivers District Council and with Watford and District Mencap.

Count Us In concert in Borehamwood, July 2010. Photo courtesy of Sue Lacey

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |


Aspiration, achievement and school improvement – music can make the difference In the next 18 months, Head teacher support for music education will be crucial. As the National Plan for Music Education gets underway, music education hub partnerships are formed and National Curriculum Review decisions are announced, it will be Head teachers who hold the key to what happens to music in schools. In the first of a two-part series, Anita Holford speaks to Secondary Heads whose leadership and support for music has had a striking impact on the achievements, aspirations and development of their pupils and schools. Performance Co-ordinator to ‘inject new energy into the school’, the school has transformed its Music Department – and its whole culture. The two new teachers encouraged the school to invest in music technology and ‘get rid of the fuddy duddy reputation of music by repainting the music rooms and removing desks so pupils could do more group work sitting in a circle,’ says Paula. ‘They were really clear about what they needed and I facilitated it.’

Year 10 ‘Rock School’ students performing at Patcham High School’s annual festival


atcham High School in Brighton is a Comprehensive school with specialist status for arts, media and English. An above average number of pupils are eligible for free school meals and there are high proportions of pupils with Special Educational Needs. In the six years that Paula Sargent has been Head, results have risen year on year and she believes music has had a huge part to play. When she joined, 22% of pupils were leaving with five or more GCSEs at A+ to C: that’s now risen to 50% and improvements are continuing. In 2010, there were 11 subjects achieving 70% A+ to C; in 2011, it’s increased to 16 subjects. For music, the percentage has increased in the last five years from 68% in 2006 to 86%. Top of page: Year 8 students singing at Patcham High School’s annual Awards Evening accompanied by their music teacher on guitar

‘When I came, the school didn’t have the best reputation and student aspirations were low,’ she explains. ‘Music wasn’t vibrant, it was very old-fashioned, chalkand-talk-style teaching and the kids didn’t like it. There were behavioural problems and they just didn’t engage with it. There were no choirs, bands or orchestras, no clubs. We did have some peripatetic teachers coming in to do instrumental tuition but the take-up was low and there was no sense that music outside the classroom mixed into the school at all.’

‘The kids have responded really well,’ she continues. ‘They’ve put clubs together to suit what the students want to do, it’s very much young people-led. We have rock bands playing at lunchtimes and after school and they showcase their work in assembly – ordinary kids who’ve put together their own group or written their own songs. That’s really important – it shows other kids what’s possible and more of them have got involved as a result.

‘I wanted there to be a big push on what I call the ‘glue that holds the school together’, music and drama. I wanted music to come out of the pores of this school.’

Raising awareness and aspirations Paula believes music has made an enormous contribution to the wider changes that have taken place in her school: ‘What I think music’s done is raised aspirations. We’ve got our kids to believe they can achieve more than they’ve ever achieved before. The whole performing arts ethos has been so good at including people.’

Injecting new energy Following staff changes, including the appointment of a full-time Musical

‘Music is important for the development of the person and my governors agree. It gives young people so much – listening

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |


Simon Balle School's musical community in a performance

skills, creativity, working in groups – it’s not about playing an instrument, it’s about those skills. The school’s achievements are being noticed locally and beyond. The annual school musicals which Paula describes as ‘massive productions’ are gaining much attention and three students have appeared on TV in the BBC’s programme about Knight Crew, Glyndebourne’s young people’s opera, led by Gareth Malone. This has been important in raising the profile of the school and attracting pupils: ‘Our school’s reputation wasn’t as good as it should have been,’ says Paula. ‘If you’re trying to attract children from aspirational families, arts and music are important.’ Keeping music in the curriculum and raising its profile Paula acknowledges the pressures facing Heads when making decisions about the curriculum as well as out-of-school activities but is convinced of its value beyond what happens in the Music Department: ‘Every now and then at a School Leadership Team meeting, when we’re looking at the curriculum and what we can afford to run, someone will say let’s look at uptake for music. I will always say that there’s no way I’d envisage running a school without offering music. It would be inconceivable.’ ‘I think it’s very dangerous if we become obsessed as a nation with squeezing out some of these subjects because other subjects take prominence. There are financial constraints but I would always fight to keep music in my curriculum.’


Summing up, she identifies three key things that Heads can do to ensure music has an impact in their school: ‘Listen to what your kids want from music and make it happen; appoint people who can offer those skills – get people with vision and energy behind you and the rest solves itself. And get the profile of music out there beyond the classroom, then the participation rate increases automatically.’ ‘We’ve not done anything remarkable but the rewards for good music in your school are absolutely enormous. Once it takes off, it brings a vibrancy to the school that you wouldn’t have believed possible.’


imon Balle School in Hertford is a Comprehensive school with specialist status in Humanities. Head teacher, Alison Saunders, sees music as playing a pivotal role in personalised learning and student leadership. She says: ‘I think you can see that music is important if you begin to understand how important it is to young people. If we are looking at the whole student, at equipping them for the challenges in our world, then we need to be prioritising the skills that we can see developing when children become involved in music.’

Alison has been Head for 14 years and has seen a gradual but significant shift in music’s role: ‘When I came here, music was exclusive rather than inclusive. Since we appointed our Director of Music ten years ago, things have changed. He had new ideas and vision, he’s a facilitator and an ideas man and he’s a real leader.’ The school became one of the pilots for

Musical Futures, a Paul Hamlyn Foundation-funded initiative that supports innovative, student-led music teaching and learning in schools (see the link to the Music Department’s NUMU web page at the end for examples of work). The role of the students and Music Department staff in advocating what was happening in these lessons has been critical. They asked Senior teachers to visit music lessons to see what was happening; the students told their friends and teachers about the different style of learning and the impact it was having on them and this helped to gain support for further investment in music. A space for the community Fundraising for and developing an existing building into a state-of-the-art Music Department was then the catalyst for the further expansion and development of music within and outside the school. The Department is now the base for Hertfordshire Music Service’s Saturday morning Hertford and Ware Music Centre, hosts music and musical theatre exams and has regular visits from local Primary schools as well as delivering workshops in the schools. ‘What happens in our Music Centre affects every aspect of our work,’ says Alison. ‘Music drives forward innovation, motivates students, models good practice and is developing our community partnerships. It’s become the life blood of our school.’ ‘Music is very much one of the recruiting draws to the school,’ says Alison. Students perform regularly in the local community and the Department often works with other subject areas.

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

One third of students now take instrumental/vocal lessons (higher than the national average) and there is a wealth of out-of-school music activities from string quartets to rock and jazz groups to a community choir.

school that is going to prepare young people to be leaders for the future in a rapidly changing and uncertain world. Music gives them that. This is as important within the classroom as outside it: ‘There’s a danger that people focus on the extra-curricular activities but the everyday experience in the classroom is so important. We believe there needs to be a link between what pupils are doing in instrumental lessons and groups as well as within classroom music lessons. ‘In schools that just see themselves as exam factories, music becomes elitist,’ she continues. ‘But if you’re looking at the development of whole children, resilient, independent learners who have a sense of accountability and responsibility, then music plays a more far-reaching role.’

A Musical Futures in progress at Simon Balle School

Music has been important in engaging vulnerable students too, particularly through the informal mentoring relationships that staff have with students: ‘It helps us to provide personalised learning as well as mentors who believe in them and I’m convinced it’s one of the reasons our attendance is so high. We’ve had students who were disadvantaged and had poor behaviour in class but through music, they’ve grown up, gained a sense of purpose and identity. Music has been the thing that’s given them a passion, a sense of direction and a sense of community and family in their schooling. Through the music staff, we’ve been able to encourage them in their other subjects as well. Some have gone on to university as a result. I’ve seen how music has transformed children’s lives.’ Developing the whole child, engaging the vulnerable Alison sees broadening music opportunities as being critical in developing the whole child: ‘We’ve been looking at what we want our students to have achieved when they leave us. We want them to have the highest possible academic achievements but we also want students who are prepared for life. It’s those personal skills and that personal development that happens in

t Humphry Davy School in Penzance – one of the top three consistently improving schools in the country – 75% of lessons contain an element of music and Head Teacher, Bill T Marshall, describes music as ‘a major tool for learning and raising standards and a driving force for school improvement.’ The school serves an isolated community at the tip of Cornwall, an area of significant deprivation. There is also a higher than average proportion of children with learning difficulties and disabilities. The school became a specialist music and maths college in 2005 because the staff and governors recognised that music would ‘engage everyone and have a significant effect on students’ achievement and personal development’.

Ofsted has said that music makes a very real contribution to teaching and learning across the curriculum. 85% of students now achieve five or more GCSEs of grade A+ to C, double the number from 2008, and there is a strong correlation between the highest performers in school and those involved in music: ‘The results from our 2010 Key Stage 4 exams show that 80% of the top 15 performers at A+ to C took some form of music course. In 2011, 60% of the top 10 highest capped point scorers are musicians. I think both these results have particular significance because in any school, there will be comparatively small

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

numbers doing music as a percentage of the year group – in our case, around 20%.’ ‘Music builds confidence and resilience,’ he continues. ‘It helps them to problem-solve, analyse, speculate, evaluate. It builds their listening and appreciation skills and encourages a culture where students work together. They discover that hard work and determination pays off, that they can overcome barriers and gain a sense of achievement. And it increases the likelihood of students engaging in a positive way when they move on to their other lessons.’ Raising standards across the curriculum Within the curriculum, music is as likely to take place in a geography lesson as a chemistry lesson and the CPD programme reflects this: ‘Through twilight training, INSET days and workshops, we give staff the opportunity to reflect on how to use music in their lessons. Even if we’re not focussing on music, it always comes back to that, whether we’re talking about links into the community or involving businesses.’ Music is seen by staff as a tool for wider learning outcomes. ‘It enriches pupils’ learning and improves their life chances. You end up with engaged students who take away for life the skills and understanding that don’t come from other subject areas.’ The school’s reputation is growing. Its music curriculum developments have been showcased as examples of best practice by the Specialist Schools and Academies Trust, the Royal Opera House and Youth Music. Three of its students were chosen by Youth Music as Young Ambassadors for Music – quite some achievement given that there are only 15 in England. Its continuing involvement in the Paul Hamlyn Foundation’s Musical Bridges Primary school transition initiative has also helped to raise the school’s profile in the wider music education community. Pupils as lead learners and role models Two initiatives have proved particularly successful in encouraging excellence and leadership. ‘Lead learners’ run lunchtime clubs, plan, organise and deliver concerts and help to run junk orchestra workshops in local Primary schools. Pupils who are interested have to apply for one of 12 positions and the process is rigorous, involving interviews and then training. ‘We identified with our students what makes a


good leader and then ran training sessions with them around things like what makes a good lesson, behaviour management, engaging people in learning. They take that back into the classroom – and they influence others. They’re developing leadership skills and a sense of responsibility.’ The existence of lead learners has also helped to built capacity in music, enabling more opportunities to be given to more young people. The school’s scholarship scheme is a way of recognising excellence and promoting the 12 student role models. Again, there are high expectations: auditions followed by appearances in concerts in school and the community in exchange for free one-toone tuition, performance coaching, trips and other opportunities. ‘You have to have high expectations,’ continues Bill. ‘We’re creating an inspirational learning environment that will enable our young people to flourish and become the leaders of tomorrow.’ Inclusion and community involvement Inclusion is an important part of the school’s ethos and the Music Department works hard to find ways to engage all pupils. There are a large number of Polish pupils and one of the teachers has investigated Polish songs and is using these in his work with choirs. Music has also helped the school include the local community in its activities and raise its profile locally. There is an extensive programme of performances in the local area (and beyond – for example, students wrote and performed an opera at the Royal Opera House) and its Penwith Music Centre is an important music hub for the local area, hosting choirs and music groups, running training sessions and masterclasses and putting local musicians in touch with one another. The role of the Head Bill believes the Head’s role in supporting music in any school is vital, not to promote the subject itself but because it will affect student’s achievements: ‘It’s not about power but about influence: the ability to influence appointments, the role models people can aspire to; providing time for teachers to reflect on what’s necessary to drive improvement; the opportunities that students have and, as a result, the outcomes that the students will achieve by putting these in place.


James Oecken, Lead teacher in Musical Bridges at Humphry Davy School

‘I’m a scientist – that’s my background. Until I was Head here, I taught physics and I’m passionate about it. But would I swap music for physics in this school? No. There’s no denying that there’s been a significant trend in improvement and music’s been an integral part of that. The culture of the school is key and that affects results.’ In the next issue, Anita Holford will be talking to Primary Heads who have transformed their schools through music. Patcham High School Knight Crew Musical Futures Simon Balle School Simon Balle School Music Department music-curriculum/keystage-4 Simon Balle School Music Department on NUMU and YouTube 85509

Simon Balle School Music Department Case Study on Musical Futures Humphrey Davy School Specialist Schools and Academies Trust Royal Opera House Youth Music index.html Musical Bridges: Transforming Transition About the author Anita Holford is a writer and communications practitioner specialising in working with organisations with a social, public or creative purpose, particularly in music. She has a background in arts marketing, advocacy communications and online marketing as well as feature writing, copywriting and editing. +44 (0)1600 713758

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

Music Services – survival of the fittest?

The National Plan for Music Education has brought in the Arts Council as funding gatekeeper and introduced Music Education Hubs as the new model for music education provision – a complete rethink of how the sector is managed and operated. Traditional Local Authority Music Services need to change to survive. Peter Baker, formerly Head of the Leicestershire and Leicester Arts in Education Service and OfSTED inspector for the Performing Arts, says this is the moment for Music Services to get their act together.


et’s just stand back or, as Ken Robinson would say, slightly to one side, for a minute or two and think about Music Services as a whole across the UK. What do they think of themselves? Well, apart from the support and camaraderie of the Federation of Music Services, they don’t see themselves as a national institution, more as local and regional organisations, providing local young people with music opportunities, fighting their corner for Local Authority support and a slice of the government money cake, both of which are looking very precarious. What does government think of them? Well, the last Labour government threw money at them, revived ailing services and created new ones where they had disappeared. But with the publication of the National Plan for Music Education, Mr Gove has, effectively, thrown down the gauntlet to them: either demonstrate an ability to play a key role in new Music Education Hubs; or merge with other Music Services; or close.

Well before the plan’s publication, Local Authorities had already been slashing budgets. Vital Youth Services have been cut across the country. Arts Services are dying – Leicestershire has recently ruthlessly axed Dance and Drama from its Arts in Education Service after 40 years of excellence serving thousands of young people. It doesn’t bode well for Music Services. What does the general public think of them? Well, they probably don’t think of them at all except for the parents whose children benefit from them. However, what’s the betting that a fair proportion of the population has heard of

Members of TLA Steel Band from Littlehampton, West Sussex, who performed I’m Yours by Jason Mraz, Live and Let Die by Paul McCartney and Band from Space by Crazy at the 2011 Music for Youth Schools Prom. Photo courtesy of Chris Christodoulou and MfY

the Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra. Why is this? Two reasons: massive publicity and the unbridled energy of the performers. El Sistema has been brilliant for the children and young people of Venezuela. The Sistema experiment in Scotland and the three In Harmony projects in England are steps in the right direction and this has been reflected in funding provision within the NPME for an extension of the English project. However, as pointed out in the Cambridge Union debate referenced at the end of this piece, the kids in Venezuela had absolutely nothing to their name so of course they thrived when they were given musical instrument training. They may well have also thrived if they’d been trained to be engineers or scientists or given basketball lessons or even chess lessons (New York City’s way of cutting down gangs).

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

What the public must recognise is that, thanks to Music Services, the UK has one of the finest systems of music education in the world. It has been successful for many years and has involved thousands of children and young people. Music Services and schools and colleges have provided the UK with a vast array of youth orchestras, wind bands, jazz bands, rock groups, choirs and chamber groups. They are hugely enjoyed in their localities but why do we not trumpet this nationally from the rooftops? Why don’t they get national coverage in the press? Is it because we are not proactive enough and because there is a British tradition of reserve and a discipline about UK classical music teaching which militates against letting your hair down? I’m glad to see the continued on page 20


Wiltshire Massed Ensemble, Warwickshire County Youth Orchestra, Ceòlraidh from Scotland, Park High Dhol Drummers from Middlesex, the Rip Roarers from Lancaster, Soul Patrol from Leicestershire, Greater Gwent Youth Brass Band and TLA Steel Band from West Sussex performing PLAY by Tim Steiner at the 2011 Music for Youth Schools Prom. Photo courtesy of Chris Christodoulou and MfY

continued from page 19 National Youth Orchestra ads have more zing about them these days and thank goodness the players no longer wear those insipid white shirts. What does bring national publicity is when, as now, Music Services are under threat. There is a substantial music lobby in this country spearheaded by great conductors like Simon Rattle, artists like the cellist, Julian Lloyd Webber, and composers like Howard Goodall. Their contribution is not just nominal – Lloyd Webber and Goodall have had direct involvement in key national

Innovence from Newport, South Wales, who performed two of their own pieces, Numb and Paper Chain, at the 2011 Music for Youth Schools Prom. Photo courtesy of Chris Christodoulou and MfY


music education projects, as Patron of In Harmony England and National Singing Ambassador for Sing Up respectively. It is clear that this influence has had a positive impact on the National Plan. I have to say I find it disheartening that the same support is not there for Dance and Drama, both equally important art forms for children and young people that don’t require the massive spend on musical instruments. Why aren’t there more national events where the performing arts can come together? Perhaps the new Music Education Hubs will address this shortcoming. The most important national high-profile music initiatives come from that amazing organisation, Music for Youth, which brings together the best of the UK’s young musicians at regional venues and at their annual Schools Prom at the Royal Albert Hall. The BBC Proms featured the Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra and the National Youth Orchestra. Now that they have got more relaxed in their format, wouldn’t it be brilliant if one of the BBC Proms were taken over by Music for Youth and televised so that the population at large can see what a wonderful variety of high-quality musicmaking our young people can produce?

Some years ago, for this magazine’s predecessor, Zone, I interviewed David Miliband, then at the Department for Education and Skills (now Department for Education), and asked him what the government’s policy was on music education. ‘More music for more people’ was the snappy sound bite reply. He was right. The Wider Opportunities scheme did just that, despite the grumbling of some Music Service staff. Which is a good cue to focus on Music Services and what they want to do, what they are able to do and what they could be capable of. ‘Whoa!’ I hear them cry; we are capable of anything and will stop at nothing to give as many children as possible access to music. Well, OK, some of you are but there still seems to be a core of instrumental teachers who bitterly resent the Wider Opportunities scheme because their purpose in life is to teach talented children; because their purpose in life is to front the glittering ranks of the top youth orchestra, the best wind band; because their purpose in life is to tour the world with their most gifted performers. By the way, what is this touring thing all about? Don’t get me wrong, I respect the hard work and devotion of teachers who take their bands and orchestras to the ends of the earth, solve

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

all the health and safety problems, fill in countless pages of risk assessments, give their performers a nice time (sometimes, at great expense to their parents) and play to two men and a dog in a park in Croatia. Sorry, I know, some play in good concert halls to enthusiastic audiences. But the outcome in terms of their profile and impact in the UK is zilch. Why don’t more music groups perform in different parts of the UK and at some of the UK’s major festivals? Why don’t Music Services join together in regional concerts? Why doesn’t the FMS ask the high-profile music education lobbyists to persuade the broadcasters to give airtime? We should aim to make more impact on the musical life of the country and raise the profile of music in the eyes of the public. Sadly, there are still some instrumental teachers who are too insular, too precious and too self-interested to make the sort of impact they could make if they were more open, more flexible and more creative and thought slightly to one side. There are others doing an amazing job with a whole range of young people. Music, nay, Arts Services, should be such a valuable asset locally that Local Authorities and Music Education Hubs should be saying we want a part of this. Some LAs are but others have taken the opportunity to close Arts Services down. The government say they want a part of it but, like so many other valuable services (Youth Services virtually all gone, Connexions being wound up, Sure Start and nurseries shutting down etc. etc.), I fear music will continue to be threatened because, as we keep being told about all the cuts, it is in the national interest. I also worry about the genuine hardship of so many young people and their families who are being plunged into

Member of East Riding Percussion Ensemble who performed Suite for Solo Drumset and Percussion Ensemble by David Mancini at the 2011 Music for Youth Schools Prom. Photo courtesy of Chris Christodoulou and MfY

extremely difficult circumstances in the national interest. At the end of the day, we have to ask, as Sir Antony Caro, the sculptor, said recently, are people more important than art? Of course people are more important than art but, in my view, people become more important with art. It is heartening to read initial responses to the National Plan for Music Education and encouraging that the government has asked Darren Henley to consider cultural education more widely through a further review – sadly, too late for Leicestershire’s centre of excellence in

Dance and Drama. Children and young people are empowered and enlivened by the arts, their lives are transformed creatively and socially, they make a positive impact on the lives of others and magic enters their worlds. National Network of Youth and Children's Orchestras of Venezuela (El Sistema) Cambridge Union debate this-house-believes-that-classical-music-isirrelevant-to-todays-youth Music for Youth About the author Former editor of Zone (now Music Education UK) magazine, Peter Baker, taught, lectured, inspected and advised on English, media studies and the performing arts for over 40 years. His last proper job was running Leicestershire and Leicester Arts in Education, including its legendary Music Service. He now manages the Leicester International Music Festival and Lunchtime Concert Series with Artistic Director and virtuoso oboist, Nicholas Daniel.

Leicester International Music Festival Members of The Klezbians from Falmouth, Cornwall, who performed a collection of their arrangements of traditional tunes at the 2011 Music for Youth Schools Prom. Photo courtesy of Chris Christodoulou and MfY

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |


A day in the life of...

Ruby Moore

16-year-old cellist, Ruby Moore, accompanied the London Schools Symphony Orchestra (LSSO) on their tour to Aberdeen International Youth Festival (AIYF) last summer. Here, she describes the orchestra’s performance at the Festival’s opening ceremony followed by a ceilidh with an international flavour. 8.00am Wake up to get dressed in time for breakfast. It may be summer but it is really cold and rainy in Aberdeen so lots of layers are compulsory. Today, the London Schools Symphony Orchestra (LSSO) is performing at the official opening ceremony of the Aberdeen International Youth Festival. However, it’s not our first performance as we gave a concert at the Aberdeen Music Hall earlier in the week, performing pieces by a selection of British composers – Elgar, Delius, Britten, Handel and Walton. This is my second year in LSSO; last year, we went on tour to Turkey. 8.30am Breakfast time. I sit with friends from the LSSO and some people from the Icelandic choir. We discuss the opening ceremony in which the Icelandic choir are also performing. Apart from Norway and Iceland, LSSO is performing all the national anthems for the countries involved in the Youth Festival. Norway and Iceland have provided their own choirs to sing their anthems. 9.15am Walk back to my room in the University halls and have a quick shower – however, not quick enough and am now running slightly late so I have to hurriedly pack my bag for the day, nearly forgetting the all-important concert outfit in the rush. Looking forward to the opening ceremony as the anthems make us all feel very patriotic. The best anthem – apart from the UK, obviously – is the anthem for Israel. 9.30am After waiting outside for a while, we see the coach finally arriving. Everyone gives a hand to help load the percussion. We use the Festival coaches to transport us


to all our concert venues and back to the University. 10.00am After a refreshing power nap on the coach, we arrive outside the Aberdeen Music Hall. The hall is stunning and can seat a very large audience. The only problem is that the acoustic has a large echo which means that we have to adjust our style of playing to improve the clarity of entries.

LSSO above (Ruby on far right, second row) and playing at the Aberdeen Music Hall (top of page)

10.30am The rehearsal starts a little later than expected. We are rehearsing with the flagbearers of the different countries. Everyone has fun guessing which flags belong to which countries; many of the flag-bearers wear the traditional clothes of their country. 12.30pm Lunchtime. We are provided with a packed lunch of which the highlight is the bar of chocolate to keep us energised for the rest of the day. We spend the rest of our lunch break walking around the town centre and watching a man busking on the bagpipes. The centre feels as if we are back in London, the main difference being the faint echo of the bagpipes and the Scottish accents. 2.00pm We return to the Music Hall to get ready for

our concert. I get dressed in my concert outfit and begin to feel the nerves; it would be awful if we messed up a national anthem. 2.30pm Still in the backstage changing room. I make sure that I drink a lot of water as the hall has a very dry atmosphere and I am just recovering from a cold, therefore, am prone to suffer from a coughing attack (a musician’s worst concert nightmare!). 3.00pm The concert begins. The orchestra tunes up as directed by the leader. We then sit and wait as there are other procedures to get through before we begin the national anthems. The concert starts with a tiny boy playing bagpipes which are almost as big as him. The bagpipes soon have the audience clapping in time; however, as the music becomes more complex and intricate, the clapping dies down, whether it is because the audience are awed by the tiny piper’s skill or just lost, I can’t tell. After the bagpipes finish to a long and wellearned round of applause, the speeches begin. After a good ten minutes, we finally begin to play the national anthems. What I love most about playing in a large orchestra like LSSO is the feeling of a close-knit community and the sense of ensemble which is crucial for playing together. Fortunately, the anthems run smoothly and a lot of flag-waving goes on in the audience. The Icelandic choir sing their anthem a capella and it sounds beautiful; the acoustic of the hall is perfect for their sound. The Norwegian choir is an all-female choir so sounds a lot sweeter. After the anthems are finished, a pipers’ band ends the opening ceremony. continued on page 24

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

Aberdeen International Youth Festival

London Schools Symphony Orchestra

Centre for Young Musicians

Aberdeen International Youth Festival (AIYF) is one of the biggest annual celebrations of youth arts in the world. Over 1,300 young performers from more than 40 national and international arts companies took part in the 2011 festival which ran from 27 July to 6 August. Orchestras, dance, theatre, jazz, opera and world music were all represented at concerts and performances which took place at some of the city’s most prestigious venues. With performers from Asia, Africa, North America and Europe, a diverse global flavour was given to the extensive ten-day programme of events.

The London School Symphony Orchestra (LSSO) is managed by the Centre for Young Musicians (CYM). Children from all over London (within the M25) are eligible to audition for the orchestra but the core of its membership comes from CYM. Children from all backgrounds are nurtured in their music at CYM and the LSSO sits at the top of the pyramid of progression for them.

The Centre for Young Musicians (CYM) has been providing high-quality music training for thousands of young people aged between 8 and 18 from across the capital, regardless of their background or ability to pay, since 1970. CYM is recognised as a Centre for Advanced Training (CAT) under the Department for Education’s Music and Dance Scheme, catering for the talented young musician on Saturdays – outside the provision of schools and Local Authorities.

A ‘family series’ programme took place at Aberdeen’s Beach Ballroom, The Lemon Tree and Aberdeen Arts Centre and included theatre, dance, song and cross-cultural learning experiences. Some shows had workshops prior to performances to allow young people to learn from international dancers, singers and musicians. The schedule also included a ‘mini-festival’ with a one-day ‘festival in the city’ on Saturday 30 July where more than ten indoor and outdoor city stages opened to young acts from the festival to perform. A full educational programme ran alongside the festival and included weeklong residential and non-residential placements on courses aimed at budding musicians, dancers and actors. Regarded as ‘summer camps with a twist’, these courses were led by young professionals working in the performance industry and each course produced a piece of original work which was showcased to audiences within the main festival schedule. The courses included the Jazz Lab, aimed at young jazz musicians, the Dance Lab, aimed at up-and-coming classical and contemporary dancers, Ceol Mor and Splore for traditional musicians plus classical music and opera residencies led by the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama (RSAMD), now the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (RCS).

The LSSO celebrated its 60th Anniversary in 2011. The orchestra has been the resident schools orchestra at the Barbican Centre since 1996 with the City of London Corporation generously sponsoring it over that period. Under the artistic guidance of Peter Ash, the orchestra is going from strength to strength, attracting generous tributes and ecstatic reviews. It offers young people the opportunity to study and perform major symphonic repertoire under the guidance of some of the finest professional musicians in the world. Many of its players have gone on to distinguished musical careers. Young London school children are offered free tickets for concerts and the scheme has enthusiastic take-up from schools, often allowing the youngsters to experience a concert performance for the very first time. The LSSO presents three Barbican concerts every year in January, April and September. These are preceded by intensive rehearsals during the school holidays. In addition to appearing at the Barbican Centre, Royal Festival Hall and other leading concert venues, the orchestra is also a significant ambassador for Britain abroad. It tours regularly throughout Europe and has also visited Japan, Argentina and Turkey.

Operating in term-time at Morley College, Lambeth, CYM encourages excellence in music while aiming to ensure that no young person is turned away because of lack of means. The vast majority of the 400 young people who attend are from inner-city state schools with over 40% from economically disadvantaged backgrounds and over 60% from a black or ethnic minority group. Through the concerts and tours of its various ensembles and orchestras – including the London Schools Symphony Orchestra and the London Youth Wind Band – about 12,000 people per year come into contact with music performed by its members. When the GLC and ILEA were abolished in 1990, CYM was preserved in a deal involving central and local government funding and the setting up of its own Foundation for Young Musicians (FYM) to raise funds. In 2009, the City of London Corporation stepped in and CYM became a division of the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, retaining its autonomy and location in Morley College. This meant CYM became a part of the new Barbican Campus which already comprised the Barbican, the London Symphony Orchestra, the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and LSO St Lukes. Income is now a mix of local borough funding for individual children, school funding and parental fee payment, supplemented by support from FYM which manages to find over £300,000 per year from fundraising activities. These funds are needed to help CYM maintain its policy of inclusivity, whereby ordinary kids from ordinary homes have access to good-quality music training to enrich their lives.

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |


continued from page 22 The band is made up of all ages and there is a young girl who can twirl her drumsticks in a very impressive fashion. Eventually, the band finishes and the flag-bearers leave with us following. The concert was a success and now we look forward to the evening’s ceilidh. 4.30pm We pile on to the coach in order to return to the University. The journey is only about 10 minutes long so we arrive back promptly. We now have free time until 6.15pm when we have to get back on the coach. 5.00pm Have another shower, this time to wash my hair in preparation for the ceilidh. Go outside with friends and see a group of people from Jordan having a dance accompanied by an accordion and a drum (a definite highlight of the International Youth Festival is being able to experience the different cultures of other musicians). A few brave friends attempt to join in with the dance and are welcomed with open arms.

6.15pm Everyone gets on the coach to go to ‘The Hub’ which provides the hot meals for the people involved with the Festival. The dishes on offer tonight are spaghetti bolognese, steak pie or roasted aubergines. I go for the aubergine dish as I don’t like eating meat away from home – with chips on the side and a small bowl of salad. The Hub is buzzing as everyone is excited and looking forward to the ceilidh. 7.30pm We arrive back at the campus and head off to our rooms to get ready for the ceilidh. Unfortunately, I don’t really own any particularly ‘Scottish’ clothing but I make do with the closest I can get – a checked shirt which could almost resemble tartan. 8.00pm The ceilidh begins. Everyone gathers in the hall – it’s great to see such a variety of people from places like Senegal, Israel, the Netherlands, the Basque Country and Singapore. Then the music starts up and the dancing begins. I have tried to prepare myself by researching a few ceilidhs on YouTube; I’m sure there wasn’t quite as

Ruby (on right) on her way to the ceilidh

much spinning around though. After about 20 minutes, I have to sit down and rest as all the spinning has worn me out. 10.00pm The ceilidh ends. However, we don’t have to go back to our rooms for a couple of hours so most of us decide to go outside and cool off on the grass. This is our last night in Aberdeen as tomorrow we are off to Perth to play in another concert (with the same programme as the first). Before it’s time to return, we say goodbye to our new international friends. A report on Singapore National Youth Orchestra’s visit to Aberdeen International Youth Festival appears in the March 2012 edition of Music Education Singapore magazine.

The Mayor of London’s Fund for Young Musicians The Mayor of London’s Fund for Young Musicians (MFYM) was launched in May 2011 as an independent charity with the objective of raising substantial donations for the benefit of music education across Greater London. The charity is led by its Chairman, Sir John Baker (former Chairman of English National Opera and ABRSM), and Chief Executive, Ginny Greenwood, and is governed by a body of trustees comprising well-known figures from musical, media and city worlds. Boris Johnson, as Mayor of London, is the Founder Patron and the charity also has support from a long list of musical patrons including Mark Elder, Imogen Cooper, Nicola Benedetti, Steven Isserlis, Raymond Gubbay and Darren Henley, reports Vice-Chairman of MFYM and the Mayor’s Steering Group on Music Education, Richard Morris.


YFM is a sequel to the Mayor’s Music Education Strategy, Making Music Matter, which he launched in March 2010. Well before the concept of ‘the Hub’ was adopted by central government, Boris and his colleagues at the GLA were taking action to bring together a wide range of music education providers including London Borough Music Services, the Arts Council, conservatoires and other higher education institutions, orchestras and arts organisations to improve the quality and range of music education across the capital. As a result of this strategy, London and its children have benefited inter alia from a major audit of music education provision (conducted by the Institute of Education), the Rhythm of London Festival and a series of partnerships between London Borough Music Services and London orchestras.

The purpose of MFYM is to raise funds so that this strategy can be maintained and expanded. This is being done through two separate schemes: the Partnerships programme and the Scholarships programme. The Partnerships Programme The first of these extends and enlarges the Mayor’s pilot project by encouraging and funding partnerships between London Borough Music Services, orchestras and Top of page: Young musicians and MYFM patrons join Boris Johnson at the launch in May 2011

other music performing organisations. Over coming years, it is anticipated that around £800,000 will be allocated for this purpose through a series of grants of up to £20,000 per partnership and that this will benefit around 10,000 children across Greater London. There will be great richness and variety across the partnerships, including workshops, masterclasses, composition classes, ensembles and concerts in different genres. The common feature is that, in all partnership projects, children will play and learn alongside leading professional musicians. The Scholarships programme The second of these will allocate around £1.2 million to fund music scholarships for approximately 400 children from disadvantaged backgrounds across all of London’s 33 boroughs. The scholarships will be worth £750 per annum and, subject to regular review, will be guaranteed for four years for each individual scholar. Each scholarship will provide sustained small group tuition over the period along with instrument hire, ensemble opportunities and individual mentoring. The scholarships will be awarded to children within Key Stage 2 who have already had first access musical experiences and are demonstrating a high level of talent and commitment. The scholarships will therefore bridge the crucial transition between Primary and Secondary education when many young people are under

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

pressure to allow their instrumental learning to lapse. Funding principles It is a well-known fact that there is insufficient public funding of instrumental learning to meet the needs of all young people and that a number of charities already exist in order to raise philanthropic funds to fill the gap. The question may well be asked therefore as to why there is a need for MFYM. The answer is that the MFYM programmes have been very carefully designed to meet the real, present-day educational needs of young musicians, based on four essential principles. Firstly, MFYM focusses on the middle ground between the gaining of first musical experiences and high musical achievement. It recognises that there are excellent schemes in place at the extremities of music education such as Wider Opportunities and Sing Up for first access and the Music and Dance Scheme for those young people who demonstrate exceptional musical talent. Conversely, what is often missing in UK music education are the structures and funding to support young people through the long journey between these poles. Secondly, MFYM is very aware of the extraordinary gulf in opportunity for continued on page 26


continued from page 25 instrumental learning between privileged and less privileged young people. This is most glaringly evidenced by the fact that within independent schools, 50% of pupils are receiving sustained, progressive, oneto-one instrumental tuition while the equivalent proportion across the state sector is approximately 8%. These figures

11-year-old Emmanuel Bugyei from Tottenham has just been awarded a four-year MFYM Scholarship. Emmanuel is pictured above with his father, Sammy, and MFYM CEO, Ginny Greenwood

illustrate just how greatly parents with sufficient means value instrumental learning as a key part of their children’s education but they also point to a six-fold inequality between the two sectors. MFYM therefore focusses on benefiting disadvantaged children within the state sector. Thirdly, MFYM recognises certain educational imperatives as the basis for all its charitable allocations. Proper learning of a musical instrument demands sustained and progressive tuition over a number of years. This is, of course, true for the learning of all school subjects but it is even more so in the case of instrumental learning given the exceptional level of mental and physical coordination required. Another tenet of MFYM is that the education of all young people will be enriched by exposure to excellence and that, conversely, the best teaching and learning addresses the needs of the individual and the small group as well as those of the entire pupil cohort. Finally, MFYM works both with and through existing Music Services in each London borough since these organisations are the natural coordinators of instrumental music education in their localities. Not only does this approach obviate the need for creating costly new structures but also it is in

‘Good music education has a transformative impact on young people; enriching the mind, giving knowledge and understanding, teaching valuable skills and discipline and, importantly, providing a source of life-long pleasure. If a young Londoner has a talent for music and the commitment to progress, I want them to be able do so regardless of their background. The Mayor of London's Fund for Young Musicians will help to make this a reality.’ Mayor of London, Boris Johnson ‘The launch of MFYM is something quite wonderful. It shows a trust in the power and value of great music and a trust in the young people who will benefit from this scheme, joining excellence and the highest standards with the widest possible access. Applause all round!” Stephen Hough, Patron


‘This wonderful initiative has arrived not a day too soon. At last, a chance for young people with a curiosity for music to really have an opportunity to try their hand and realise a creativity previously reserved for others more financially fortunate than themselves.’ Chi-chi Nwanoku, Patron ‘I fully support the Mayor's Fund for Young Musicians and recognise that, implemented responsibly, it will improve access to music-making at the highest level for all children in all genres. This, in my mind, is as it should be and will enrich their lives and all of ours now and in the future.’ Julian Joseph, Patron

accordance with the Henley Review and the National Plan for Music Education in encouraging collaboration in order to provide the richest musical diet for all young people. Between them, MFYM’s Partnerships and Scholarships programmes give effect to all these four principles and will greatly benefit the musical learning and aspirations of young Londoners whether as individuals or members of a group. MFYM has already organised various presentations and discussions on these programmes for both London Borough Music Services and other arts organisations and music education providers. At all these meetings, great enthusiasm has been evident and, in some cases, the MFYM programmes will become the centrepiece of wider local initiatives with matched funding raised locally by the partner organisations. Mayor of London’s Fund for Young Musicians (MFYM) About the author  Richard Morris is Vice-Chairman of both MFYM and the Mayor’s Steering Group on Music Education. He is also Chairman of Governors of the Yehudi Menuhin School, the former Chief Executive of ABRSM and a trustee/consultant/mentor to other music and arts charities and individuals.   

‘Music can transform a child's life in so many ways. A child singing to him or herself is a happy child. The benefits of studying music – emotional, social and intellectual – are well documented. The Mayor's Fund will encourage as many children as possible to tap into those benefits and to follow their musical dreams.’ Steven Isserlis, Patron ‘We know that music education can have a hugely positive impact on a child's life but, sadly, there are many families who simply cannot afford it. The Mayor's Fund for Young Musicians is an ambitious initiative that will transform access to music education in London and, with it, help improve the lives of many disadvantaged young people.’ Munira Mirza, Mayoral Advisor on Arts and Culture

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

The centre point W

elcome, once again, to another centre point. Although this issue of the magazine has been a long time coming, we like to think it’s been worth the wait!

So, finally, we have a National Plan for Music Education and there is much for us music ICT education geeks to ponder. Two key points raised in the plan affect us directly: the call to further embed technology into the music classroom and the development of appropriate CPD for teachers who want to learn about technology but don’t find it comes naturally. Although the NPME includes some case studies, I feel it only scratches the surface of what is now available for students of all ages and that we could show the government a thing or two! There are many education organisations pioneering technology in exciting and new ways, including NUMU, Musical Futures, individual schools and Local Authority Music Services. For some excellent case studies on technology being used in schools, do check out the resources

section on the Musical Futures website ( and see the case study on schools in Victoria, Australia, in the last issue of Music Education UK. If any of this interests you, please come along to some of the sessions at next month’s musiclearninglive!2012 conference (; they will be very relevant so sign up soon and join in the debate with like-minded people.

articles looking at notation software readily available to educators; the others – Notion and Finale – will appear in later issues. On top of this, there’s my regular Apptitude test column looking at Apps available for mobile devices, this time focussing on music games. Meanwhile, we are starting to build a bank of online articles at and you can read contributions from Gigajam’s Brian Greene (Exploring the opportunity digital learning offers – is eLearning real learning?) and Paritor’s Jodie Vickerstaffe on York Music Service’s implementation of the Paritor software management system.

This leads me nicely on to what’s on offer in this issue. In his regular column, Charanga’s Mark Burke takes a look at hip hop, focussing on language and lyrics and how hip hop culture can be used to develop confidence in students. Mark gives us a quick overview of the subject and, hopefully, this is something we can go into more deeply in a later issue.

If you have anything you would like to see covered in this section of the magazine, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me via or speak to me at musiclearninglive! in March.

I have reviewed the latest version of Sibelius (version 7) and looked at the new features available to users. As one of the most commonly found pieces of software in school Music Departments, it’s worth the investigation. This is the first of three

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Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |


Hip hop – language and lyrics, creativity and confidence When you watch talented music educators truly engage young people and inspire them to achieve to the full extent of their capability, you tend to look more at the way they teach than the music they are teaching. Part of Mark Burke’s job as Digital Learning Partnerships Director at Charanga Music has been to work with excellent teachers, whatever their musical background, and to try to embody what they do in digital learning applications and content so that others may benefit from their expertise. In the search for talent, one happy consequence for him has been experiencing genres of music that he would not have come to naturally and this is particularly true in Charanga’s work with hip hop artist, Max Wheeler. Before working with Max, Mark might have asked ‘why teach hip hop?’ Now he would say simply say to everyone – ‘hip hop works’.


oung people, especially those who are hard to reach, engage with hip hop in surprising ways. One reason might be its ability to absorb and incorporate other sounds, influences and cultural trends. Just look at how it borrows samples from folk, classical, rock and pop, jazz, funk, soul and world music so effortlessly, all in the same breath.

Another element is rap and its ability to talk in the language that real people use every day to talk about real-life subjects. Maybe it’s the fact that you don’t have to buy expensive equipment to get started – a pad and a pen for rap and even free software will do for making beats. Maybe it’s because it’s an underground culture without the usual rules and theories that go with most music lessons. Hip hop artist, Max Wheeler, says he can fit more lyrics into a minute of rap than he can into a whole album of outof-tune singing! As a teacher, is there a more relevant way to discuss issues or to get young people to express themselves than by writing a rap? Is there a more compelling way to teach music technology or ICT than by making a beat? What better way to help build confidence among young people than by working in groups, creating music that many of them are already listening to. Whether that’s hip hop, grime, R&B or funky house, it usually comes down to a beat and a rap – the fundamentals of hip hop.


Max’s Technology Tips for Beat-making below give you a head start in helping students to create different types of beat against which to write a rap. For help on how to write a rap, check out Max’s YouTube video at Hip Hop Coach Technology Tips for Beat-making Basic beat-making checklist: • Turn on loop in the software you’re using • Turn on ‘count in’ and the metronome – this means when you press play you’ll hear a click to play along with For a hip hop beat: • Set your tempo to about 90 BPM • Put a hi hat sound on beats 1 2 3 4 • Put a bass drum sound on beats 1&3 • Put a snare/clap sound on beats 2&4 • Keep the drums loud For house/dance music: • Set your tempo to 120-130 BPM • Put a bass drum sound on beats 1234 • Put a snare/clap sound on beats 2 & 4

• Keep the bass drum loud For a dubstep or grime beat • Set your tempo to about 140 BPM • Put a hi hat sound on beats 1 2 3 4 or swung before kick, clap • Put a bass drum sound on beat 1 • Put a snare/clap sound on beat 3 • Note that a lot of dubstep is in a minor key, uses synthesizer sub bass and is quite sparse and spacious with an emphasis on bass lines as a lead element • Note that another key feature is the ‘drop’ where elements are taken away and then brought back again. Try taking all of the sounds out of your beat for a bar or so and then reintroducing them with an additional new sound

Charanga Music Hip Hop Coach Beat-Completer App

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

Hip Hop Coach Teaching Tips for working with rap What do I do about swearing, violence, sexism etc? • Use a radio edit approach – write something that could be played on Radio 1 in the daytime. Most students understand this concept already. What should students write about? • Whatever subject they are into. It can be anything: family, friends, sport or music. Writing about your day-to-day life and the local area is a good place to start.

whoever’s rapping (1 2 3 4) This helps their timing and focusses them on the performer. Hip hop is the natural medium to weave together lyric-writing, composition and music technology with individuals, whole classes and maybe even entire schools. It may not be your own natural go-to music but if you approach it as you would any other type of music and apply your expertise, you may be pleasantly surprised at the results. About the author Mark Burke studied at the Royal College of Music

How do I keep the attention of the whole class when they are not performing? • Get them all to join in with counting in

Max Wheeler has released two albums as rapper and producer of hip hop duo, Dirty Diggers, on Zebra Traffic/Tru Thoughts records. He runs youth music projects for Audioactive2 and Creative Partnerships as well as other projects around the UK. Max is the author of the Charanga Music Hip Hop Coach module.

Join Mark Burke and a host of other expert presenters at the musiclearninglive!2012 conference Institute of Education, London 12 & 13 March 2012

and is a widely experienced music educator. Today, Mark is Digital Learning Partnerships Director at Charanga Music.

Hip Hop Coach is a collection of 100+ rich interactive teaching and learning tools that can be used to teach students all aspects of hip hop.

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

Information and bookings

Charanga Music is a digital learning community of over 10,000 music teachers and their pupils with access to thousands of digital resources for teaching and learning music.


Review – Sibelius 7 Title Sibelius 7 What it is Notation software Produced by Avid Price £183.29 ex. VAT So remind me… What is it? For those of you who are very new to using software or have been living under a rock for the last 15 years, Sibelius is a piece of software specifically designed for creating notation documents. It has been leading the field in the UK for a number of years and every 18 months or so an update is released, bringing new features to the package.

A common misconception by schools, teachers and students alike is that Sibelius is a MIDI sequencer in the style of Cubase or Logic. Although a lot of the features overlap with standard DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) software, the company that makes Sibelius, Avid, has a designated DAW package in their software line up (Pro-Tools 9, which includes excellent integration with Sibelius). Sibelius is, and always has been, purely designed as a desktop publishing package. It is intended to be used to allow musicians to print up their compositions and arrangements in a presentable way and maintains all the common commands (Copy & Paste etc.) from other more familiar software like Microsoft Word. So what’s new? Should I upgrade? The headline feature in Sibelius 7 is the total redesign of the user interface. For those of you familiar with the latest versions of Microsoft Office, the look and feel of the


new tool bars and controls will seem immediately familiar. Sibelius uses the term ‘Ribbon’ for the strip of commands and tools bars at the top of the window.

The tools and commands have been laid out differently from those in previous versions (in what Sibelius feels is the most common order for document creation) so the home Tab now contains most of the tools that used to be found in the Edit list, including Cut, Copy, Paste and Split, Join. It also contains the basic controls for getting instruments on the stave via Create Instrument and Change Instrument as well as what I would describe as much more advanced commands including Hide/Show which is really only used once people have got a document pretty much finished. The next two Tabs include all the important note input information including much easier access to Triplet controls than in previous versions. Key Signatures (‘K’), Clef (‘Q’) and Time Signatures (‘T’) can be found in the Notations Ribbon alongside performance directions including assorted Lines and Symbols. All the previous versions of Sibelius included many fabulous plugins that were hidden away in a sub-menu. In version 7, Sibelius have sorted them out and put a plugin list on each Ribbon that is relevant to

colouring note heads in the colour of BoomWhackers and automatically placing note names in the note heads to take a tune straight into the classroom without adding text under each note. The other big addition to the latest version of Sibelius is a new 38GB sound library for playback of pieces. Since Sibelius was bought out by Avid a few years ago, this has given them access to all of Avid’s resources which include a number of sample libraries and synthesisers. This is enhanced by a modernised mixer which is hidden at the bottom of the screen and accessed by pressing ‘M’ on your keyboard but can be made to float anywhere by dragging it out of the window. This is a big

addition for teachers and students as it allows the project to be exported direct to audio for submission to exam boards. Although this has been a feature since version 3 of the software, it was a bit hitand-miss in earlier versions. With the improvement in sound quality, it is making the need for other sound sources and separate software less necessary. Sibelius have also made several tweaks ‘under the bonnet’, improving the workflow and increasing compatibility with other software (including other notation software), improving the handling of picture files for graphic scores and allowing images to be linked to external graphics. This means that if the external file is edited, Sibelius will always be using the latest version of the image.

that set of tools. Some of these plugins are extremely useful to teachers; they include some very simple ones like automatically

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

Although there are no ‘huge’ additions to the software itself (how much can you add to notation?!), Sibelius have done what I think is the most important thing for software updates: they have tried to make the process of working smoother and easier. Sibelius have thought about how people write music and updated the interface to aid the workflow rather than adding more and more menus with additional features that nobody wants. So… how will this help students? For students and teachers alike, Sibelius is great tool for writing out compositions and arrangements for coursework and for generating ‘performances’ of the pieces for submission. I have also used it to create accompaniments for performance exam candidates to practise with. The updates to the user interface are designed with simplicity in mind and the software could easily be used by younger students but probably not below Key Stage 3. With the latest version of the software comes an update to the Teaching Resources section. This can now be found in the File menu and by clicking on Worksheet Creator. It

allows you to generate worksheets from a template or to use one of the thousands that Sibelius includes. Sibelius 7 is up to date with the latest GCSE syllabus and includes teacher notes, lesson objectives and keywords for each project. This can be particularly helpful for students who are either much further ahead and need a challenge or much further behind and need some scaffolding to help them catch up. Students can use the worksheets in Sibelius while teachers can focus their energies on the rest of the class. So… is it worth it? That depends on your situation now. If you don’t have any notation software at the moment, then probably – but look at the alternatives as well, including Finale and Notion. If you are using Sibelius 6 at the moment, then probably not – version 7 doesn’t add enough to my mind to justify the upgrade fee. The additional sounds are

very tempting but, having listened to the demo files of the sample libraries on the Sibelius website (my review copy didn’t include the samples), I’m not convinced they are the best sounds around. If you are considering investing in version 7 for the sounds, I would suggest looking at a separate sampler like Kontakt or HALion instead as the sounds, to my ears, are much better. Also, the performance dynamics are too jerky in Sibelius and a better sampler linked with a DAW to smooth out the bumps in volume data will get a better performance from your composition or arrangement. If, like me, you have an older version of Sibelius (I’ve got Sib 5), the boundaries are a little more blurred: the layout updates are a big plus for me as it allows a lot of the commands I use often to be accessed more easily and it will allow my students to see what they are trying to do if they don’t know the terminology. My only complaint on this is the positioning of Time Signatures and Key Signatures which can no longer be set in the project setup and have to be added later. The first thing I do in a project is to add these to it so I would prefer to see them earlier on in the process rather than three

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

menus in. However, this might just be my personal opinion rather than what everyone else does and I can see the logic of where Sibelius has put them with other related information.

So, in conclusion, Sibelius 7 is generally a good update for the user interface and the sounds are a step in the right direction. It makes me want to get back to my studio and write some music. Hopefully, it will make you want to do the same.


The Apptitude test In this series of reviews, Technology Editor Tim Hallas looks at some of the music Apps available for mobile devices and discusses their relative merits and how they might be used in the classroom. Here, Tim looks at some musical games and Apps that are just a bit of fun! Next time, he will look at some of the music Apps available for the Android operating system. Title Soundrop Produced by Develoe LLC Price Free (upgrade available for £1.49) Available from itunes View v=N1w-B_uSkkA

Title Auditorium Produced by Cipher Prime Studios Inc Price Free Available from itunes View v=94HWhQnQo5s

The concept behind Soundrop is a very simple one – balls fall and you direct them with lines that you draw on the screen and each time the ball hits a line, a sound is created. Great, that sounds easy enough but what’s the point? Well, having tried it myself and with about 25 classes-worth of students, I can say that it is very addictive and actually surprisingly difficult to get the hang of.

A musical game with a very simple concept – get the stream of light through all of the audio level bars to move onto the next level. This sounds very easy and the first few levels are quick to get through. However, don’t be fooled. This game is incredibly tricky later on as you have to direct the stream through different colours to alter timbre first. The game is surprisingly addictive and there are hundreds of levels, each getting more varied.

Each line is linked to a sample of a marimba and the pitch depends on the angle and distance of the ball hitting the line. The challenge exists in trying to get the software to play either a rhythm or a melody; this requires a lot of patience, careful positioning of the lines and a bit of luck. The lines are drawn by dragging your finger across the screen in the direction you want the line to go and for the desired distance. The lines can be adjusted by grabbing either end of the line to change the angle and length. To change the position of the ‘ball-dropper’, keep your finger held down on it until a crosshair appears so you can drag it around the screen to the desired position. The Pro version of the App (available for £1.49) includes additional sounds shown by different coloured lines, the ability to have gravity affect the balls’ trajectories and to use multiple ‘ball-droppers’. I use this App with my students as a quick activity to improve rhythm perception. The main challenge is to get a pattern of lines that creates what is clearly a rhythm rather than a noise, much harder than it first appears. If they do this quickly, the next challenge is to create a melody which is even harder!

To operate the game, you have moveable arrows that change the direction of the audio stream which can be moved around with your fingers. To change the angle, you have to increase the size of arrow, using two fingers by stretching or pinching them together over the arrow. There are hundreds of different right ways to solve each level once the basic controls have been mastered. Although officially labelled a game, I only use it with my students at the end of lessons if they have achieved everything else I want from them. It includes a large amount of logic so it is still educational even if the musical skill level is negligible! The website allows you to play the game online so can be used with your students straight away – it is a limited version but your pupils will get stuck before the levels run out so it shouldn’t matter.

I would challenge you to have a look at this App and to try it yourself as it is a great test of rhythm, logic and physics.


Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

Hearing the hill

– natural sounds, music and cross-curricular learning In August 2010, Law Primary School in Berwick, East Lothian, instigated a year-long cross-curricular project, Law Stories, which culminated in a day of celebration, Law Extravaganza, in June 2011. Along with local historians, artists, countryside rangers and a sound engineer, traditional musician, Gordon Turnbull, worked with pupils to explore the ancient hill, North Berwick Law, which rises up behind the school.


isten. What do you notice? If you’re reading this at home, on a bus or train or perhaps in a café or staffroom, any number of sounds might surround you. The radio might be on, an MP3 player, distant plumbing, voices and conversation, a playground, traffic, announcements. Maybe there’s a bird outside your window or the wind is up and the rain is on.

Usually, we are able to filter out certain sounds and focus on others in a way that we take for granted. Depending on our environments, some of that can be more or less challenging. So adjust the filters and listen again to the aural landscape where you are. Do you notice anything else? What are the qualities of the sounds? Is there a rhythm or a pitch? Is there a texture? How does it make you feel? Reassured, alone, busy and buzzy, agitated, happy? How would you choose to express that musically?

response to the International Year of Biodiversity 2010 for P4-P6 (Y3-Y5).

and social development and art. Surround Sound was a good fit with these themes.

Many schools already engage with environmental education through the John Muir Trust’s Award scheme which promotes the ideas of the environmental and national parks campaigner born in East Lothian. Surround Sound meets one of the strands of the Award which is to share personal enjoyment of a location through one of a number of different means – including music.

The workshop The aim of the workshop is to raise awareness of natural aural landscapes and how these can be a stimulus for creating new music. The themes touched on include environment, acoustic science, ancient history and archaeoacoustics. Surround Sound runs in three parts over a 1½-hour session: listening and reflecting, discussion and creative response. The listening activity involves playing extracts of nature-inspired music that the children are encouraged to consider. To help them, they are given blank pieces of paper and pencils or pens and invited to respond on paper by taking a pencil for a walk in whatever way makes sense to them. All responses are valid as long as the children are engaged and responding somehow to the music.

When Law Primary School in North Berwick invited me to run sessions as part of their wider cross-curricular project on their neighbouring hill, North Berwick Law, I jumped at the chance. North Berwick Law is an extinct volcanic plug that rises up almost from the school grounds to stand as an imposing landmark

These are some of the questions that are considered in Surround Sound, a creative music workshop that I run for Primary Schools through East Lothian Council Arts Service as part of their Natural Links programme in what is a predominantly rural and coastal region east of Edinburgh. Background A Primary school teacher by training and a traditional musician by inclination, I combine these interests in leading creative music workshops in Scottish schools. Surround Sound encourages consideration of the sounds of nature as a source of musical inspiration and as a stimulus to music-making and was devised in

North Berwick Law

visible from Edinburgh and from far out to sea where it has always been a key navigational aid. Occupied in antiquity, it is today an important ecological resource. The school project involved environment, history, science, literacy, music, group work, community and citizenship, personal

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

Doodled lines, spirals, shapes, pictures, colours, words and sentences come out in ways that are neatly ordered, jumbled, overlapping or a mixture, expansively and otherwise. The personal nature of the continued on page 34


continued from page 33 activity keeps it inclusive and also gives the children freedom to begin expressing themselves. The finished sheets can be collated into a class book or display later on and can be informative to a class teacher. I talk a little during the process about the title and composer but otherwise, the room can soon become a space full of concentration and reflection. The music extracts include Debussy, Mendelssohn, Vaughan Williams and folk music and are variously inspired by birdsong, the sea, water and wind. From there, we listen to Aeolian harps and, finally, the environmental textural work of Cheryl E Leonard who provides a pivotal point of the session. Her work includes manipulating water and close-recordings of controlled interactions between stone and sand, for example. The frame of reference has moved from conventional instruments imitating natural sounds to one that is more elemental and abstract. Once we have concluded with these pieces, group discussion follows. We

People who helped

to which there is no single answer. The workshop responses tend to settle on three main areas: • imitation of naturally occurring sounds • the discovery of acoustic properties of natural materials • imitation and development of naturally occurring rhythms From here, we discuss the naturally occurring sounds and materials, what they might be and where they might be found. We consider the naturally occurring sounds of the local area and the musical possibilities of local materials. This invites comparison with other localities that will have their own acoustic environments and potentially different naturally occurring musical possibilities. As such, these will influence the range of sounds and music that people make in different environments and in different parts of the world. Psychoacoustics and ecological acoustics are two study areas that might have more to say on this. However, Surround Sound also references the rich world of archaeoacoustics, ‘the study of sound in archaeological contexts’ or, more broadly, ‘what did the past sound like?’ This was of particular relevance to the Law project which focussed on the Brithonic people who occupied the area in antiquity.

Making natural sounds

compare individual thoughts on the music before considering how music first came about, how or why it was first created. It’s a big question, one that is still debated and


Surround Sound is most concerned with the point at which music can emerge from the environment that surrounds us by considering the acoustic properties of naturally occurring materials and their

musical potential through demonstration and, later, hands-on exploration. I outline the development of instruments from their basic sound-making forms e.g. from simple reeds to reed instruments. The origin of these sounds would be many thousands of years old but continue today. I bring in a range of materials that I have gathered and selected from the area as having musical potential, supplemented by various simple improvised aerophones. Some materials cannot be included due to allergy risks but a cut drinking straw turns into a simple reed that relates to all reed

Simple claves

instruments, for example. It helps that I play a simple system wooden flute, essentially a cleverly modified stick. The discussion can go in many directions but it is important that the children are able to test these ideas. The final part of the session involves an exploration of the

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

activity. In the Surround Sound tepee that threatened to blow away, the different groups of P5 children devised descriptive phrases about North Berwick Law that came out of their project work. The syllables of the agreed phrase for each group session were turned into a rhythmic leitmotif that was used in conjunction with the rewritten Greenwoodside chorus. Instruments included coppiced hazel sticks, stones, leaves and fir cones which played in unison on the leitmotif that began and ended the piece with crescendo and diminuendo and also in solo spots. Although I directed the music and played flute on the chorus, the rest of the music was devised by participants who soon came to include visitors, parents and Pre-school children as they listened in. Brithonic musicians

materials in small groups: aerophones, dried seeds and shells in various containers, stones, forest material consisting of bushy branches, pine cones, leaves, coppiced hazel sticks and driftwood make different types of claves. I have a djembe drum quite noticeably carved from a log and also use other drums. There is a chance to carousel around the stations I set up and try out different materials to explore. Individuals are encouraged to share in their groups and to work together in an open-ended manner. We then share with the rest of the class and work towards a Whole Class performance. During this highly active, busy and noisy creative period, I refer to the groups as the People of the Woods, the People of the Winds, of the Shells and so on to reinforce the idea of identities and localities. I also introduce simple conducting instructions that will be used for the performance. I have adapted a traditional Scottish song, Bonny Greenwoodside, for the workshops, changing the lyrics to suit the locality and reinforce the connection. We quickly learn this and add it into the mix before coming together and recording all of our sounds in one big performance. The clock is ticking and there’s a buzz in the room at this stage as the children focus and we bring everything together for the recording. Afterwards, we have a coming-together session to share feelings about the

experience and learn what the children have discovered. The responses usually include ‘I didn’t know you could make music from…’ and ‘I enjoyed the …’ but are often surprising. Comments have also included ‘music has always existed’ and ‘music can be anywhere, even in the sound of a door opening and closing’. One girl demonstrated owl hoots by blowing into her cupped hands and described how she regularly communicates with an owl that comes to the edge of neighbouring woods when she makes her call. Conclusion Surround Sound is concerned with how the sounds of nature have inspired musicmaking for thousands of years. With the Law project, we came together weeks later to the Extravaganza on the Law itself. The children were dressed up in period costume and we provided a musical moment alongside archaeologists, countryside rangers, storytellers and shadow puppets in an open day celebration of learning and sharing. In a little encampment of tepees, yurts and a marquee on a sunny and windy day in early summer, small groups of about a dozen children moved in rotation between the activities and locations, music-making being just one of many. While some of the workshops in the past have resulted in the creation of a loosely structured soundscape, the energy of the Extravaganza dictated a more up-tempo

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

I lost count of how many back-to-back performances of roughly 20 minutes we did but no two were the same. Including the audience in the improvisations made for a very social experience that they then took to other Extravaganza events as they built up their own sense of North Berwick Law. Another creative response to the sounds associated with the Law came from local sound engineer, Matt Thomson, who was also involved in the project. Matt produced a CD that incorporated all of the project elements including local musicians, storytellers, children’s writing and Surround Sound in a rich aural tapestry. Some other potential responses for a project like this might include sound installations, sound mapping and sonic postcards of both rural and urban environments. Exploring environmental sounds through Surround Sound raises other questions. When launched in the 1970s, the NASA Voyager mission contained recordings of sounds from Earth that were believed to be representative of a global acoustic landscape at the time. What would other life forms make of it? As our world has changed so much, it is in a sense an archaeoacoustic snapshot of another time. What does it tell of us of that world? Would we choose the same sounds again or do we have new ones to add? And what music might that inspire us to make? continued on page 36


continued from page 35 The Flow Music Workshops The John Muir Trust Archaeoacoustics: The Sounds of Ancient Places archaeoacoustics Voyager: The Interstellar Mission sounds.html

Brithonic life on the Law

Cooking bread at Law Extravaganza

About the author Founder of The Flow Music Workshops, Gordon Turnbull, designs and delivers music workshops for children and adults in Edinburgh, the Lothians and Borders as well as leading CPD training events for Early Years workers, Nursery staff and Primary school class teachers. He has worked with the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland in their MusicWorks outreach programme, Fèisean nan Gàidheal, and the Scots Music Group. A traditional musician for 30 years, Gordon plays with Irish dance group, Absolutely Legless, and with Edinburgh bands, High school pupils performing with Music Specialist, Pauline Hickmann

Cauldstane Slap and The Big Squeeze Ceilidh Band.

Law Stories 97 pupils from three Primary 5 classes took part in Law Primary School’s Law Stories project which ran from August 2010 to June 2011. Following close liaison with countryside ranger, Jen Edwards, the project became the focus of the John Muir Award, an environmental award scheme in which children work with wild land conservation charity, the John Muir Trust. With long-term conservation at the core of the project, the children worked towards creating an official trail up North Berwick Law in order to reduce human impact on this historic local site. In addition to collating social stories from the local community about the Law past and present, prototype interpretation boards were designed by each class depicting key elements of the stories collated. Creative writing by the children based around what they had learned and experienced during walks up the Law also formed part of these boards. The project subsequently evolved into a much wider collaboration with East Lothian Council Arts Service. Arts Education Officer, Ruthanne Baxter, worked with groups of children on how to broadcast requests with East Coast FM in Haddington and how to interview people to discover their memories. Caroline Henley from


the local library ran workshops developing storytelling skills while Tanwen Llewellyn, who speaks the Brithonic language, came into school to tell us about the history of the Law and Brithonic Iron Age people. Following successful acquisition of a grant from Scottish Heritage, we were then able to work with an artist, Gemma Coyle, to produce artwork from natural products and with archaeologists, Ruth Bordoli and Sarah Cowie (Museums Service), on how to investigate the past using artefacts. Music evolved as a key element of the project through the work done with Gordon Turnbull (Surround Sound) and his collaboration with Matt Thomson (Rockethouse) in the production of a CD recording excerpts of the stories, music and sounds of the Law. Rockethouse

Law Extravaganza On 9 June 2011, the year-long project came together in an extravaganza of learning and sharing of the children’s work, attended and supported by the specialists involved, parents, other pupils and the local community.

Marquees, yurts and tepees were set up in the quarry at the foot of the Law; all children and staff dressed accordingly and got into role to recreate an Iron Age Brithonic village atmosphere. Children worked in groups to perform music and drama, cook bread on sticks and tell stories; they got involved in archaeological digs and working with artefacts, willow weaving, sharing their hard work and playing traditional games from days gone by. Recordings were also made for a feature on East Coast FM. A group of High School pupils, along with music specialist, Pauline Hickmann, played stringed instrument pieces throughout the afternoon, creating a very relaxed atmosphere. As part of their Science focus on light, the children also designed shadow puppets to recreate their stories which they brought to life using a variety of percussion instruments. It is hoped that East Lothian Council will be able to find funding to produce the formal interpretation storyboards. This year’s Primary 5 are continuing the project producing podcasts which can be downloaded by visitors who can listen to the tales of the Law as they climb the hill. Sandra MacNiven, Teacher, Law Primary School

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

Voice from the front Primary teacher and music education blogger, Jackie Schneider, says we need a revolution in school music to rival Jamie’s School Dinners.


et me start by saying I’m no expert in music education: I’m not a trained musician – just a bog standard Primary teacher with twenty years’ experience. I fell into music teaching quite recently, mainly because the majority of teachers in my school were reluctant to teach the subject so most of the children were simply going without. Some expert guidance from Merton Music Foundation and a five-day course from The Voices Foundation (paid for out of my own pocket, I might add) and I now teach music at several Primary schools in London.

I want you to have a think about the revolution that occurred in school food because I think it contains some lessons about how we could revitalise music education. Back in 2005, most Head teachers tolerated poor-quality, inferior school dinners. It wasn’t that they were callous but the priorities they had in running their schools didn’t reach down to worrying about the school meals. This sorry state of affairs was only reversed when good old Jamie Oliver – alerted by the Soil Association, campaigning dinner ladies and complaining parents – really went on the offensive. He highlighted the excellent work done by dinner ladies such as Jeanette Orrey, drew attention to the research that showed school meals make a difference to children’s attainment and pointed to the rising tide of childhood obesity. Carried high on a wave of public opinion, his campaigning led directly to the establishment of minimum nutritional standards and an end to Head teachers’ complacency about the sorry state of their own school food. Parent anger forced politicians to move swiftly to get improvements in place. Schools were forced to respond and, in a relatively short time, school culture transformed. Many schools suddenly found budgets to decorate school halls, took parent complaints more seriously and put time and energy into improving meals.

Imagine if we could do the same with music education. What if we could use parent power to make the government and Head teachers take notice and propel music education higher up their list of priorities? We would have to tell a compelling story about what is actually happening in schools up and down the land with some facts and figures about how many children receive few or no music lessons. We’d have to explain the difference between genuine music lessons involving the entire school body and the extra-curricular garnish which is sometimes used to showcase a very small minority of students and to allow schools to draw a veil over actual curriculum shortcomings. We would need to highlight really brilliant, innovative schools and Music Services that do achieve excellence for all and publish step-by-step case studies explaining how they achieved it. We would need to talk directly to parents about why music matters, tearing down the myths that it is only for ‘especially gifted musical types’, that actually relating to music is part of what makes us human and that by teaching music we can help children to concentrate, listen, participate and communicate. We would have to abandon the jargon and learn how to make the case plainly and honestly. We need parents to care that their children are currently being short-changed. If nothing else, the school dinner example teaches us that if parents care, Heads are quick to follow. We know that, through music, we offer a strategy for many children to re-engage with school. Unless we are able to connect directly with parents and to win their active support in promoting music teaching for every child, we will simply be ignored by the Latin-loving Gove. We need to write to PTAs, use

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Facebook, contact school governors, go on to netmums, mumsnet and every other parenting forum to persuade the public to support music education. The question of inclusion needs to be addressed. How can we ensure children on the autistic spectrum or with any Special Need are not left out? We should be talking to Child Poverty Action Group and The Sutton Trust to make sure kids in poverty are included. Having the support of parents is even more important than having the support of a high-profile celeb like Jamie. I know from my own experience in the London Borough of Merton that while celebrities get great coverage, it was the anonymous parents who wrote letters, met Head teachers and pestered councils that won the funding for extra kitchens and booted out the company that gave such poor-quality service. That said, it would be pretty impressive to gather an army of musical celebrities to support our concerns. I don’t begin to understand the complex network of different music teaching associations that exist and, if I’m honest, they are all pretty superfluous to my day-today existence. However, unless we all work together, we can look forward to music being dropped from the National Curriculum and having no place in the EBacc. The different campaigning groups would do well to consult regularly with us rank-and-file teachers and maybe even deign to follow us on Twitter, giving us a chance to have our views heard. About the author Parent and school food campaigner, Jackie Schneider, has been a teacher in the London Borough of Merton for the last 20 years. Jackie served on the board of the School Food Trust and has acted as an advisor to the Food for Life Partnership. She tweets as @jackieschneider.


Ongaku music

–group composition in Japan and the UK In 1993, composer and educator, Hugh Nankivell, was contacted by an English friend living in Kyoto who suggested that he get in touch with a Japanese friend of his who was coming to England to study with the music educationalist, John Paynter, at York University. That friend was Makoto Nomura and so began a relationship that has continued to this day with a sharing of ideas and projects. Nomura and Hugh quickly realised that they had a similar approach to creative work in that they were both interested in how their roles as composers could exist within creative collaboration contexts. Hugh describes how they have worked together in schools and with adult groups on several diverse Anglo-Japanese projects as well as a large number of smaller discrete projects in both countries. Composition hen I first met composer and improviser, Makoto Nomura, I was working on a research project at Huddersfield University about collaborative composition with children and had come up with a definition of composition which was to divide it into the two different elements of ‘invention’ and ‘arrangement’. My thesis (in practical activity and words) is that everyone can invent ideas that can be used as the starting blocks for musical composition (a rhythm, a melody, a lyric etc) but that the arrangement aspect is more of a learned craft. Within workshop situations, I encourage ideas as invented by the participants. Sometimes, I give these ideas a shape and an ‘arrangement’, suggest ways in which they can be moulded or ask questions which might lead to a shape for the emerging piece. When working with a number of community music projects, several of these ideas became creative repertoire pieces (e.g. Goat Music and 12345 – see box).


At the same time, Nomura was developing a group compositional approach called Shogi, named after a Japanese board game somewhat similar to chess. In this approach, every person in turn composes (invents) their own section of music which they then notate in their own way. The important thing about the notation in Shogi compositions is that each individual can understand their own notation so that


when they later come to play the piece they can read and remember what it means. This is, therefore, a pre-determined structure (arrangement) whereby all the musical material is composed (invented) by the individuals who are taking part. Ongaku In Japanese, the word for music is ‘ongaku’. This is made up of two separate kanji (characters) which mean ‘enjoy’ and ‘sound’. Nomura introduced me to a Primary school teacher in Tokyo called Kunitaro Ikeda. When Ikeda meets a class for the first time, he takes them onto the flat roof of the school and they lie down and listen to everything they can hear. Later, in the classroom, they recall all the sounds one by one and for each sound, Ikeda asks the children, ‘Did you like that sound?’ If they say yes, he then tells them, ‘That is music - for you.’ Music is the sounds we enjoy and we all understand and appreciate different musics. It struck me that this word ‘ongaku’ (the sounds we enjoy) is more useful than the Western ‘music’ with its connotations of descending from the gods above and alighting on certain ‘gifted’ people more than others. Play In English, the verb used to describe what a musician does is ‘to play’. For instance, I play the piano and I play the guitar. Sometimes, musicians can forget what to play means and they might more

accurately use the verb ‘to work’ to describe their music-making. When on a project with a group, I will always remind them that musicians ‘play’. A few years ago, I asked a Primary school class to define the word for me. Their response was to tell me that play meant that (a) I was going to have fun and (b) I didn’t know what was going to happen. Goat Music is a groove-based piece in three parts for mixed-ability groups. Everyone plays a repeated pattern on pitched instruments, coming in one by one. They then gradually move to unpitched instruments and play a different ostinato before moving back to pitched instruments. Finally, they drop out one by one. The structure is fixed but the content is always different and all participants create their own material. When the piece is finished everyone must retrospectively title the piece by explaining what kind of a goat it was! 12345 is a conducted piece for mixed ability groups with a series oaf different rules. The conductor indicates the different rules to each individual in the group by holding up different numbers of fingers. Rule 1 means play a drone, rule 2 means play an ostinato and rule 3 indicates play a solo etc. This piece can be developed in many different ways. Again, all the invented material is created by the participants and the conductor is the arranger. Guitarist and community musician, Paul Griffiths, first showed Hugh the basics of this approach.

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

These two definitions, the Japanese for ‘music’ and the English for ‘play’, along with a shared understanding of what ‘composition’ can consist of, have influenced the way that Nomura and I work and this shared understanding has underpinned much of our creative partnership. On the composition projects that we have led, we endeavour to let the process be playful and to let the participants decide and invent as much of the material as possible. We also play with the notion of composition as defined by ‘invention’ and ‘arrangement’ and attempt to validate in as many ways as possible the outcomes. Wani Ballet For instance, on the first trip I made to Japan in 2003 to work with Nomura, we played with a Year 1 class (aged 6/7 the same as Year 2 in England) for three morning sessions. In this time, we made lots of music, did lots of movement and had a lot of fun. One of the new pieces we created was called Wani Ballet (‘wani’ is the Japanese for crocodile). This song with actions came from a long, unbroken and noisy session in the classroom. After the session had finished, Nomura and I, along

The first Piano Dances in Japan

with a few other adults, worked further on the song to clarify it, structure it more fully and learn it. The following day, we again sang it with the children and the whole class seemed to engage with it and joined in enthusiastically. We also performed it at the sharing (with an older class group and parents) at the end of the week. This process whereby material initially created by an education or community group is rehearsed and developed after

the session by the music leaders working with the group before being returned to the group is one which Nomura frequently uses. This validates the original musical ideas and enables the participants to appreciate their creative starting points in a new way. There were further developments with Wani Ballet a couple of years after it had continued on page 40

continued from page 39 been created when Nomura was commissioned to create a series of TV programmes for pre-school children entitled Ainote. He decided to use Wani Ballet as the theme music for these programmes which were aired on NHK several times. There were several different versions of the song heard over the series of programmes, once again giving the children further examples of musical arrangement. These programmes earned lots of money for the composers of this piece (all the royalties went back to the

We play a video of the Nursery groups and then have a live presentation by the adults. In both the first two performances, some of the young children also spontaneously joined in with the performances. Again, for Nomura and me, Piano Dances is a way of playing with musical ideas, allowing young people to invent and explore, to find sounds and approaches they like and then to arrange these ideas with older people in order to produce new, original and dynamic creative work which has at its heart community and education.

About the authors Hugh Nankivell has wide experience of leading creative music projects in the UK and abroad. He was the founding chairperson of Sound Sense and has been an integral player in establishing the creative music agenda within community and education settings in the last 20 years. He has worked on outreach and development projects for The Sage Gateshead, Opera North and Dartington Arts (among many others). He worked with Huddersfield University on a research project for three years on composing in groups with children aged 8-11; he led innovative projects in Early Years with The Firebird Trust and DAISI (Devon Artists In

Links Shogi Composition shogi-composition Hugh’s blog about Piano Dances at Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival Hugh’s blog about a session he and Nomura led in Japan: Postcard Music 462957795

Schools Initiative) and this led to an original project with 3-80 year-olds run in both Japan and the UK with composer, Makoto Nomura. He is dedicated to finding new ways to compose and collaborate and to share these experiences as widely as possible. Makoto Nomura is a Japanese composer and improviser. He has been keen to expand the boundaries of music composition through many

Hugh working on Piano Dances in Japan

school) and, therefore, the school was able to have further artists working there. Piano Dances The most recent project that Nomura and I have been developing is Piano Dances which has now had versions in the northeast of Japan and the north-east of England. This is a two-part project whereby we explore new techniques and approaches to playing the piano with a group of Nursery-aged children. We film the sessions and afterwards spend time analysing the evidence to find new techniques and new approaches to playing the piano as invented and discovered by three- and four-year-old children. After the first two projects, we have observed 78 new techniques and 46 new approaches to playing the piano. We then present this mediated documentation to an adult community group who meet in the evenings. This group is self-selecting and the participants are interested in creativity and, in particular, music and movement. We then develop new pieces of music and choreography with these adult groups using the new techniques and approaches learned from the Nursery groups. Finally, we share the material with both groups.


Video A YouTube link to Nomura’s band, Ainote San, showing one in a series of programmes on Early Years music that the band made for national TV in Japan. Each of the programmes includes the song, Wani Ballet. A film Hugh made with Ainote San about making music with shoes. &feature=youtube_gdata_player

different projects including Music with Animals, Keyboard Choreography Collection and Remix of Elderly People’s Home. He has composed numerous pieces in many styles including works for solo piano, chamber and symphony orchestras, rock and improvising bands, Javanese gamelan, melodica, traditional Japanese instruments and found objects. In many of his works, he has combined trained and non-trained musicians. As an improviser, he plays the piano and the melodica.

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

Young Champions Musical Futures is an approach to teaching and learning that starts with the passions and interests of young people and, through this, aims to make music learning relevant, enjoyable and engaging. Alongside the practical work and the general experience of ‘becoming a musician’, the role of the internet for young people to support each other with their music-making is increasingly becoming a critical aspect of the ‘perform – share – review’ process, says Musical Futures Project Leader, Abigail D’Amore.


usical Futures and NUMU established the MF Young Champions programme in 2010. Through Musical Futures, many young people have emerged not only as having musical talent and skill but also as being leaders capable of supporting others. The MF Young Champions programme acknowledges this as well as building on and nurturing some of these leadership skills in an informal online environment that is driven by the students themselves. The programme involves a network of young people who, through NUMU, provide informal peer-to-peer guidance, support and advice to other students with their music-making, particularly those who are involved in Musical Futures activity in their music lessons. Young Champions, who range in age from 12-17, are given regular ‘tasks’ from the NUMU team, including directing them to

other schools’ record labels on NUMU and asking them to provide some advice and guidance on the music being made, collaborating on online music projects and recommending artists for online competitions.

When you hand responsibility over to the students, they will rise to the challenge All Young Champions attended a training day where they worked together to create rules of engagement for mentoring and coaching others. These included: 1. Provide constructive and positive criticism without being patronising 2. Be genuine with your responses 3. Don’t be overwhelming with your advice: be specific 4. Be a friend not a teacher 5. Ask questions

6. Give examples of other artists to listen to 7. Encourage new music and songwriting 8. Be controlled in what you say and how you say it 9. Use appropriate language 10. Share your own musical experiences Since January 2011, 1,154 comments were made by the Young Champions to more than 250 students across the UK. There has been an overwhelming sense of commitment from the Young Champions and they have embraced this programme with enthusiasm and sensitivity. One Young Champion said, ‘I really like helping other young people with their music... I think it has also improved my social skills and I now feel I can talk to people in a more constructive way and give more constructive feedback.’ The sorts of social interactions between young people through this programme can range from musical advice to broader issues such as moving to Secondary school. Examples of comments from Young Champions include: ‘Your beats are really good, although it sounds like your recording could be better, next time try and amplify the vocalists more!’ ‘Your lyrics are amazing, do you write about personal experiences? My tip is to write when you're feeling emotional, the songs come out personal and stunning at the end! :)’ ‘I think you should try Set Fire to the Rain, it's a really good song and it would definitely fit your voice.’

Above: A student uses NUMU to mentor and coach others online. Top of page: Two Young Champions discuss their experiences at a Musical Futures event

continued on page 42

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(Christina Clark and George Dugdale in collaboration with Booktrust), shows that there is a definite link between blogging and writing ability. It found that young people who write on a blog were much more likely to enjoy writing in general. There is also a greater confidence in their ability to write. It is thought that blogging has a particularly positive effect on boys – who, according to this report, are more likely to rate themselves as ‘not very good writers’ – because boys hold particularly positive attitudes towards computers and are more likely to believe that computers are beneficial to their writing.

Provide constructive and positive criticism without being patronising This image shows the sort of language used by Young Champions when commenting on others’ music

continued from page 41 ‘All your songs are AMAZING!!! i write myself, and i can tell you put so much emotion into writing your songs, can truly feel the passion :)’ ‘Was it hard to learn the chords or did you find it easy?’ ‘What do you use to record your songs? have you ever considered adding vocals?’ As well as helping others, the programme has also supported the Young Champions with their own music-making, developing their communication skills and improving confidence and self-esteem.

of tracks and users on NUMU. They seem to have formed lots of bonds with fellow musicians from all around the UK with some excellent comments and feedback shared.’ (Head of Music) Another major aspect of this programme is encouraging Young Champions to blog about their own musical experiences. There is increasing evidence that this form of writing activity can improve communication skills, literacy and the overall attitude to writing in general. The 2008 report by the National Literacy Trust, Young People’s Writing: Attitudes, Behaviour and the Role of Technology

185 blogs were written by Young Champions in 2011, ranging from asking for musical advice, talking about what arts activities the bloggers were involved in and sharing music they made and uploaded to NUMU. For example: ‘I was sitting in my english class today and had a sudden thought about songwriting. You see, my english teacher comes up with the strangest phrases. They can be really poetic but no one uses them these days. I'm not sure whether she makes them up, or she takes them from somewhere... Anyway, I realised that I could listen to her and try and get inspiration for the lyrics to my pieces. I kept a piece of paper close by, and every time she said something

‘I think that the thing I have liked most about being a Young Champion is how much it's helped me learn about other people and music genres. It's also helped build my confidence in myself.’ (Young Champion) ‘Most of them have risen to the occasion and their confidence has grown enormously.’ (Teacher) It has also enabled students to broaden their own horizons musically by listening to an eclectic mix of styles of music from other young people. ‘They have used their status as Young Champions to listen to a much wider range


This image shows the sort of language and terminology Young Champions have been using in their blog entries

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

unusual that could be used as a song, I wrote it down. In one hour, I got two lines, but I'm not sure if I like these: ‘I'd love to shield your body from the light’ and 'You found a penny and lost ten pounds’. I have decided to continue doing this and maybe I'll get some good ideas!!!! :)’ ‘I've got news. I'm going to interview a producer who lives near me and put the interview up as a blog. Also, I am currently in the process of recording some songs so my page should look a bit more full in the future. I've been listening to some songs but every

About Musical Futures and NUMU Musical Futures started in 2003 and is a special initiative of the Paul Hamlyn Foundation. It aims to find innovative and imaginative ways of engaging all young people in meaningful and sustainable music activities, within and outside school, through a variety of teaching and learning strategies that focus on informal learning and non-formal teaching practice. It aims to make music learning relevant by building music learning experiences from young people’s existing passions for music and by creating music activities that are appealing to and exciting for all students, not just those who already demonstrate musical skills and talent. Musical Futures has seen significant results in terms of student engagement, participation and motivation for music both within and outside the classroom. Take-up of music at Key Stage 4 has increased by an average of 40% (in schools surveyed) and there has also been increased demand among students for extra-curricular instrumental lessons

time I was half way through or about to comment my internet died ¬.¬ But it is fixed now *yay*’

And it shows that when you hand responsibility over to the students, they will rise to the challenge.

For teachers who wish to accredit the work that their students are doing, the Silver Arts Award is particularly compatible with the Young Champions programme. One of the units focusses on Arts Leadership and, through the Young Champions programme, students are able to demonstrate their leadership skills through online means. Musical Futures is in the process of producing some guidelines for students and teachers wishing to integrate the Arts Award into their execution of this programme. These will be available from the Musical Futures website.

Young Champions at Musical Futures

The Young Champions programme is still in its pilot stages but early indications show that it is having an impact not only on the Young Champions but also on the students in the schools receiving comments on their music. 2011-12 sees a scale-up in the programme from 20 Young Champions to more than 100 with Young Champions being drawn from the UK and internationally.

Young Champions at NUMU Arts Award Young People’s Writing: Attitudes, Behaviour and the Role of Technology, National Literacy Trust nlt_research/261_young_peoples_writing_ attitudes_behaviour_and_the_role_of_tech nology About the author Abigail D’Amore is Project Leader for the Paul Hamlyn Foundation’s Musical Futures initiative. She is also a project manager, consultant and editor and has advised on music education projects with various organisations.

Example of Young Champions’ pages on NUMU

and ensembles. It is proven to develop and enhance students’ listening skills and instrumental skills as well as non-musical skills such as leadership, communication, cooperation and teamwork. It has had positive effects on student behaviour in music lessons and general attitudes towards music in school and music departments. Musical Futures now runs in approximately 1,500 schools in England with pilots currently taking place in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland and with increasing interest internationally. Teachers and practitioners are encouraged to use and adapt the Musical Futures approaches in their individual teaching situations and, as there is no official sign-up process, this gets done independently of Musical Futures. Musical Futures provides a free training and CPD programme as well as a bank of resources and ideas – many of which are developed by teachers and practitioners – to support high-quality music teaching and learning in the classroom.

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Anyone with an interest in Musical Futures can download the teacher resource materials free of charge (from www.musical, attend a Musical Futures training/CPD session and sign up to a newsletter to receive updates about Musical Futures’ work nationally and internationally. Musical Futures Paul Hamlyn Foundation NUMU is a free website and community for schools and organisations to deliver engaging music activities online. Students can safely publish music, join projects and compete in a unique national chart. With over 50,000 members and 55,000 tracks, NUMU is the place to hear the freshest sounds first. NUMU


Singing with Pre-school children to develop vocabulary knowledge Many people consider music education to be a valuable component of artistic development. For decades, psychologists have told us that the artistic mind and the rational mind are separate. They are typically thought to reside in separate hemispheres of the brain, the right-brain being responsible for art, music and emotion and the left-brain for language and fact-retrieval. However, more and more research is telling us that left- and right-brain skills are not completely separate. Music contributes to brain development in ways that enrich the music practitioner’s overall cognitive or academic ability and not just artistic ability. Music and language are more intertwined than once thought. An example of this phenomenon is found in a Canadian study which concludes that singing with young children enhances vocabulary learning, says study leader, Dr Jennifer Sullivan.


ocabulary is one of the most important factors in overall educational success. Children who start school with larger vocabularies tend to excel in reading ability (Stanovich, 1986). Children who have more knowledge of words learn to read more quickly but they also gain more knowledge of words from reading experience. Therefore, there is a cyclical advantage for education from enhanced vocabulary. The more vocabulary a child knows, the easier it is for him or her to learn to read. The more reading success a child experiences, the more time he or she will spend reading. The more a child reads, the more vocabulary he or she will learn, the more he or she will comprehend what is being read and the more content material he or she will learn. This effect has led many educators to focus efforts on vocabulary enrichment.

Many vocabulary enrichment programmes have been developed for children in middle childhood. Children are taught vocabulary words using varied classroom activities such as reading definitions, sentence generation, synonym generation and making contextual comparisons (Beck & McKeown, 1983). However, the advantages of early vocabulary learning are often overlooked. Differences in


vocabulary knowledge in the beginning of Primary school may impact on a child’s ability to learn to read and intervention should, therefore, be implemented as early as possible. Pre-school vocabulary enrichment cannot use the same methods as those used for older children. Pre-school children will not respond to activities such as sentence generation. Typically, the enhancement of vocabulary and other pre-literacy skills has been associated with reading to children. As the children hear new words in the story, they can quickly infer meaning from the context and from the pictures accompanying the text. The teacher or parent reading the story can also provide additional explanations of the new words. Story book reading is an effective

Vocabulary test picture for the word bursting

way for children to develop vocabulary but it is not the only way to develop vocabulary. Children’s music has also recently been found to be effective for developing vocabulary. I help run a research project which is a small part of a Multidisciplinary Collaborative Research Initiative (MCRI) called Advancing Interdisciplinary Research in Singing (AIRS) supported by a grant from the Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC). This study was conducted in a small town in Nova Scotia, Canada, and focussed on singing as a way to teach young children new words. The use of singing as a vocabulary intervention has received very little attention in the research realm. My colleague, Sarah Drake, and I felt that singing could be a very successful teaching tool. Young children tend to be highly motivated by music. Even the shyest children will join in with group singing. So we went to a local Day Care Centre to test children and sing with them to see if singing could help children to learn new words. First, we tested children’s knowledge of a set of advanced

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In the Rubber Duckie song, children use their fingers to make glasses for a disguise

vocabulary words such as disguise, frantically and spectacular, specifically chosen for our study. These words were chosen because they are not words that most Pre-school children know but they are words that could be found in story books written for children under five years old. These are the types of words that children might learn from hearing stories read to them. To test a child’s knowledge of a word, we showed the child a set of four pictures and asked the child to pick the picture that matched the word. After the initial vocabulary testing, we taught the children ten songs that included 28 difficult vocabulary words. For this study, we modified ten existing children’s songs by writing new verses to include these difficult words. For example, we used the song Rubber Duckie by Jeff Moss from Sesame Street. To teach the words disguise and bursting, we added the two verses: Rubber Duckie in disguise, Wearing glasses to hide your eyes, Rubber Duckie, I’m awfully fond of you Rubber Duckie bursting bubbles, You make bathtime have no troubles, Rubber Duckie, I’m awfully fond of you We taught the children to sing each of the songs by using a line-by-line repeat-afterme style of singing. First, the teacher would sing a line then the group of

children were asked to repeat the line. Children were then engaged in individual singing by taking turns singing lines of the song in the same repeat-after-me style. Finally, children were asked to sing the entire song in unison with the teacher. We also incorporated actions in the songs wherever possible to further engage the children. For example, in the Rubber Duckie song, the children would use their fingers to make circles in front of their eyes to act out the wearing glasses part of the song. The goal of our intervention was to teach the children the songs so they were actively participating in the word learning experience instead of more passively hearing the words in stories. After just 20 half-hour sessions with the children (two for each song), we tested the children on the same set of 28 vocabulary words. On average, the children showed a 39% increase in the number of words they knew in the second test compared to the first. This vocabulary learning can be attributed to the learning of the songs. The children did not all learn all of the words used in the songs. However, the rate of word learning was comparable to or better than other studies of vocabulary learning from storybook reading (Biemiller and Boote, 2006). We concluded that teaching songs to children is an effective way to help children develop vocabulary knowledge.

overall academic success, it is important to continue to explore ways in which we can foster the development of vocabulary in young children. Reading stories is a very effective method of introducing children to language and literacy and should not be discounted. However, our research shows that singing songs with children is another beneficial activity. Singing is a pleasurable and inexpensive way to teach vocabulary to children. It is an alternative that is accessible to all which could be a benefit for lower income families who may not be able to access books as readily as upper income families or for those who have poor literacy skills themselves. Also, the motivational and social factors should not be overlooked. The children were always very excited about singing songs. The group singing was also a strong personal bonding experience for the children and the singing teacher coming into the Day Care Centre. Singing songs as a way of helping children to acquire a larger vocabulary can be an easy and fun activity that may provide life-long benefits to literacy skills and academic success. Music educators who teach songs to young children are often unknowingly providing these children with an added benefit of enhanced vocabulary skill. References Beck, I. L., & McKeown, M. G. (1983). Learning words well: A program to enhance vocabulary and comprehension. Reading Teacher, 36, 622625 Biemiller, A., & Boote, C. (2006). An effective method for building meaning vocabulary in primary grades. Journal of Educational Psychology, 98, 44-62. doi: 10.1037/00220663.98.1.44 Stanovich, K.E. (1986). Matthew effects in reading: Some consequences of individual differences in the acquisition of literacy. Reading Research Quarterly, 21, 360-407

Advancing Interdisciplinary Research in Singing (AIRS) About the author Dr Jennifer Sullivan received her PhD in Psychology from the University of Waterloo. She has been teaching Psychology at St Francis Xavier University since 2003. She is a co-leader with Dr Andrea Rose (Memorial University of Newfoundland) of the Teaching Through Singing team of the AIRS research group. She is investigating the effects of

With the knowledge that vocabulary acquisition can play such a large role in

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singing on language development.


Keys to the future A group of students investigates backstage at the Barbican... a young woman works part-time in an arts organisation to develop its social networking capability... young composers get involved in running and writing music for a family concert... a Music Service provides a work experience placement linked to music teaching. These are among the varied ways in which music organisations working with Arts Inform are providing important work-related learning experiences for our young people, says Co-Director, Catherine Rose.


ith overall youth unemployment rocketing and the future looking distinctly shaky for some of our young people, improving work-related learning and increasing knowledge of employment opportunities can only be a good thing. Arts Inform has been working with arts organisations for many years, developing projects which give young people a window into working in the cultural industries and driving up the quality of arts education experiences.

Working with the Association of British Orchestras (ABO) and Sound Connections, Arts Inform brought together a group of 14 music organisations in December 2010 to begin a conversation and an exploration of work-related learning in the music sector. We had realised, through informal research during a previous project on the Creative and Media Diploma, that the music sector wasn’t necessarily aware of its potential. In fact, it’s often the smaller music organisations that engage better with this aspect of young people’s development – offering qualifications and projects which develop professional skills in a way that the larger organisations, and particularly the orchestras, haven’t really tried. Workrelated learning was a strong feature of the Creative and Media Diploma – and one which the creative sector welcomed. However, given that the 14-19 Diplomas no longer enjoy specific government support, there are still opportunities to Top of page: Students from Morpeth College visit the Barbican with Serious. Photo courtesy of Emile Holba


Students working on a design for La Traviata as part of a Royal Opera House Set Design Pathway Challenge. Photo courtesy of Mat Smith

link into Open College Network and Arts Award qualifications as well as working with school-based syllabuses such as GCSEs and BTec courses. We also found that the members of our group quickly realised how much they could learn from each other. Much of the arts world is hooked firmly into the idea that all their employees must be graduates. Yet a visit to one of our meetings by Shaun Bajnoczky, a Creative Apprentice from the Royal Opera House, turned that idea on its head. What he had learned and the experience he had got under his belt through the Creative Apprenticeship made

him an impressive and highly employable candidate for the future. Another student, Nazmul Hoque, on placement with Raw Material, impressed us enormously with the range of his experience and expertise even though he is only 16. Yet placements – whether short-term work experience, internships or apprenticeships – are a vexed issue for music organisations. The perception is that there isn’t the time, the capacity or enough of the right work to offer to young people at different stages of their development. Creative thinking is required here. CM, based at the Brady

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Young musicians at work with StreetVibes. Photo courtesy of StreetVibes

Arts Centre, has developed a part-time paid placement for a young person to establish their social networking – something that nobody in the organisation had the time to do and in an area in which a young candidate would have more experience and skills from the start.

The possibility that a group of music organisations could share an apprentice between them also has legs. Pauline Tambling, Joint CEO of the National Skills Academy and CCSkills, speaking at the half-day seminar, Keys to the Future, which rounded off our project, told us that apprenticeships are a genuine alternative entry route for young people for whom higher education is not an option. ‘We're now seeing tiny employers and sole traders taking apprentices as well as small clusters of employers sharing them,’ she said. ‘This programme is making a real difference to the sector by bringing talented young people from all walks of life into the sector.’

The Keys to the Future seminar took place at Toynbee Studios on 23 November 2011. To receive a copy of the case studies and final report which will be published shortly, please contact Arts Inform. Arts Inform Association of British Orchestras (ABO) Sound Connections About the author Catherine Rose is Co-Director of Arts Inform, an

Hideko Ueda applies make-up to a student at the Royal Opera House. Photo courtesy of Mat Smith

Yet even if an apprenticeship seems out of reach, there are many other ways of bringing work-related learning to keen young minds – from performing to attending a workshop in sound technology to becoming involved in stage management to shadowing a marketing officer. We hope the seminar gave a space to music organisations and teachers to sit down and discuss the possibilities for the sector – how to tap into and train young talent in a way that both enhances students’ chances and improves the workforce for the creative industries as a whole.

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agency which works with arts organisations and schools to research and create work-related learning project models. Members of Arts Inform’s music working group include the BBC Symphony Orchestra, City of London Sinfonia, CM, Grand Union Orchestra, London Sinfonietta, Newham Music Service, Raw Material, Rolling Sound, Royal Opera House, Serious and StreetVibes. Its partners in Keys to the Future were the ABO and Sound Connections. +44 (0)20 7729 1548


Music, health and well-being There has been a widespread surge of interest in music and its impact on health and well-being, evidenced by the fact that two UK conferences took place across the same weekend in September 2011 – one organised by Making Music, the UK amateur music organisation, and one by SEMPRE, the Society for Education, Music and Psychology Research. Work in this field spans the range of music therapy, performance, arts in health, and community music approaches. Chair of Sound Sense, Catherine Pestano, looks at the topic from the perspective of a number of projects run by members of Sound Sense, the professional association for community musicians.


n hospitals and older people’s nursing homes across the land, musicians are being invited in to help address issues of isolation and withdrawal. Arriving as entertainers, LETSwing play ageappropriate standards but bring instruments and aim to encourage as much participation as possible. ‘Staff are often surprised at how residents respond, often dancing, playing and singing along where normally they would be withdrawn and non-verbal,’ observed Steve Barbe, lead musician. The Alzheimer’s Society has also taken up this theme with their carefully designed singing and movement programme, Singing for the Brain.

The reasons for using music for well-being often revolve around soft outcomes such as feeling more confident. Some specific new studies are starting to measure harder outcomes as well such as those in the Brompton Hospital trials for use of singing with patients with pulmonary breathing problems where reduction of anxiety was identified as significant (RBHT 2010). The work of Stephen Clift at the Sidney de Haan Research Centre has been particularly rigorous in the investigation of singing and he and the Research Centre will be conducting further studies in collaboration with Sound Sense and the Natural Voice network. Singing is low-cost, easily accessible (institution/home/ community) and has been found to have significant impact on mental well-being Top of page: Joy of Sound in session at St Peter's, Lambeth. Photo courtesy of JoS


(Clift and Morrison, 2011). As well as helping in acute settings, music can be a support in self-managing longer-term conditions, helping people maintain a positive perspective, reduce their isolation and transform their attitudes to their conditions (Holford, 2010). As interest grows, resources are becoming easier to find. The London Arts in Health forum (LAHF) has been commissioned to set up a national database on arts and health, which went live in July 2011, that offers a rich selection of case studies. Searching the NHS Evidence in Health and Social Care website for music yields over 4,700 papers. Voluntary Arts has set up a site to help people treating or experiencing long-term health conditions to find inspiring stories about the impact of arts and has 21 music-related articles. And further afield, the United Nations published a compendium with a substantial section of case studies on health and well-being (2010). Music activities for well-being range from those targeting people with specific conditions, such as asthma or Parkinson’s, to those which welcome a mixed and inclusive range of participants. Music choices vary according to the group interests and facilitator availability, ranging from low tech – singing or drumming – to very high tech – using specially adapted gadgets to level the playing field and create new access for disabled people. Where do we draw the line on defining well-being? In my community music groups, many people

who are not declaring a health issue still need help to cope with stress, isolation, caring duties, bereavement, poverty, redundancy or overwork. Creative collaboration in mixed experience groups is a key practice underpinning many groups. The Lifemusic method developed by Rod Paton at Chichester University has trained many people to use open access improvisation techniques to create music where there are ‘no wrong notes’, a liberating notion for novices and expert players alike (Paton, 2009). South East Community Music (SECM) and Joy of Sound (JoS) are two groups using open access approaches towards instant musicmaking. The use of open-tuned guitars and zithers, pentatonic metallophones, kalimbas and psaltery plus high-quality percussion creates delight and wonder in participants. ‘A key skill which develops is high-quality listening and responding, to create quite magical sounds,’ says Chris Leeds, Director, SECM. JoS works in large groups with adults with severe learning, sensory and physical disabilities. Starting points for the music are taken from the participants themselves. Their seed contribution is acknowledged at the end of each piece, building self-esteem and ownership with participants moving on towards leadership roles. A more structured approach can also be taken in songwriting and compositionbased projects. Scots Music Group developed outreach work with four

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homeless and mental health projects in Edinburgh. Dr Nikki Moran and Gica Loening noted many instances of a positive effect on mental health and well-being – relief of stress, alleviating loneliness and depression, forgetting worries and also a sense of fun, excitement and physical movement: ‘I find playing with others relaxing, meditative, joyful and exhilarating.’

One of the ‘Bethany Boys’ during a Scots Music Group workshop in Edinburgh. Photo courtesy of Scott Murray

Making Noise’s music-making workshops (organised by soundLINCS) are tailored for children and young people with Special Needs. At each session, participants are encouraged and enabled to transform their own ideas and experiences into music by engaging in a mix of instrumental and vocal activities. Confidence, musicality, communication skills and group interaction grow week by week. ‘The nature of the project requires us to be very flexible in order to accommodate each participant’s needs,’ says music facilitator, Mike Nicholls. Although Imogen finds social interaction challenging, she is high-functioning and articulate while William has significant speech and language difficulties. Yet the pair have developed a tremendous rapport and mutual respect through their music-

making and the introduction of new instruments and activities. These include tuned instruments like the glockenspiel and Imogen’s ukulele as well as hand percussion, iPad Apps and the ‘Skoog’, a soft, squeezable and colourful cube with touch-sensitive sides which translates touch into musical sounds via a computer link. Technology also comes into its own when reaching vulnerable youth: Simon Glenister of Noise Solutions works with young people with mental health needs and has found that services are willing to allow personalised budgets to be used for arts activities so people can choose these interventions. His innovative work (Suffolk) includes use of Wii, music technology and other gadgets. Chris was agoraphobic for nine months before working with Simon and now will go out to visit other clubs to play his newly created track. Where work is within institutions, some of the challenges can be about enabling people to be fully autonomous rather than compliant within a setting, making choices and using the instruments as they wish. Accessibility is essential with inspirational group, Joy of Sound, commissioning specially adapted instruments to enable participation with ease (Leeds, 2009). Length of input is also a constant issue with projects lasting from a short, one-off input to longer term of a year or more. Funding is a continuing issue with diverse models including regeneration and EU money, charitable trusts, commissioned services and ‘the Robin Hood’ approach – mixed groups with the general public paying to subsidise those less able to pay. Process is as important as product for many groups – there may be no end product, the music is for the participants,

Imogen (8) and William (11) have been Making Noise regulars since Spring 2011. Photo courtesy of soundLINCS

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now, in the moment, and is precious and enough in itself. Reflection on the process forms part of the practice of many projects. An example is the inspiring Music for Life programme at the Wigmore Hall, an opportunity for people with dementia to create music by improvising with professional musicians who have an hour of reflection after the session to consider fully the processes involved (Page, 2010). Community musicians have much to add to the growing interest in health and music. New partnerships will be formed across traditional health and education boundaries which can only benefit the communities, children and adults who so need the growth and sense of well-being that making music can offer. References Clift, S., and Morrison, I., (2011), Group singing fosters mental health and wellbeing: findings from the East Kent, ‘‘singing for health’’ network project, MENTAL HEALTH AND SOCIAL INCLUSION, VOL. 15 NO. 2 2011, pp. 88-97 Holford, A., (2010), Creative Opportunities for patients’ wellbeing, Primary Health Care, Vol 21:6, pp.16-20. RBHT 2010 ents-with-copd/ accessed 15 Aug 2011 Paton, R., (2009) Community, music, Sounding Board, 2009 issue 2 Leeds, C., (2009), Growing painlessly, Sounding Board, 2009 issue 2 Page, K., (2010), Taking care, Sounding Board 2010 issue 3

Resources Many thanks to Anita Holford of Writing Services ( for additional information on resources. Sound Sense for ongoing debate and support LAHF national database Evidence in Health and Social Care Brompton Hospital study Voluntary Arts Groups International Society for Music Education has two relevant Commissions – one on community music and one on music medicine continued on page 50


continued from page 49 UNESCO compendium, Music as a natural resource (2010) Resources/tabid/456/ItemID/1836/language/e n-US/Default.aspx

Training Sound Sense is leading on music for the Paul Hamlyn-founded Navigator project – understanding CPD for community artists 93&isa=Category&op=show Lifemusic, Dr Rod Paton The Sidney de Haan Research Centre is developing guides and training to promote the expansion of singing for health groups (mental Sound Sense Sound Sense has been supporting community music and musicians in the UK for more than 21 years. Community musicians are professional workers who help people take part in music-making which reflects their lives and aspirations. They believe that everyone is creative, everyone has the ability to make music (whatever their level of technical skill) and everyone has the right to make music. They work, therefore, largely with people who are disadvantaged: young people, older people, those in criminal justice and health settings, with disabled people, in regeneration work, with music that celebrates diverse cultural backgrounds and elsewhere. Although their work is educative, they are not acting as teachers but as co-creators of music-making. While their work is therapeutic, they are not taking the role of a music therapist. Sound Sense was set up by such community musicians themselves because they wanted and needed support and because community music needed promoting. Since then, it has enjoyed a range of achievements. ‘From running dozens of one-day professional development events – which we know have changed the way community musicians work: 90% of attenders agree! – to working specifically to increase the diversity of community music, we have been very active in pursuing those twin aims set down so clearly over 21 years ago,’ says Kathryn Deane, Director of Sound Sense for 16 of those years. Highlights of the work have included a threeyear programme advocating community music’s links with health and regeneration through


health, dementia, COPD and Parkinson's disease) plus a seminar and workshop programme Community music courses such as Certificate in Workshop Skills (Music) at Goldsmiths College. Search nationally. RCNM: modules in Music and Health plus residential trainings in partnership with Musique et Santé Music for Health Bulletin

JoS Sing Up SECM SoundLINCS Wigmore Hall LETSwing SKOOG

About the author Former social worker and trained music teacher, Catherine Pestano, is a community musician

Other practitioners/groups featured:

inspired by the power of singing and music to bring,, Voluntary Arts Network SEMPRE Making Music

people together across diversities, increasing their

government departments, Local Authorities, community development agencies, nursing and health workers as well as major and ongoing advocacy work embedding community music practices into the education of children and young people. Sound Sense has supported disabled musicians and those who help them make music through its National Music and Disability Information Service and helped create a more diverse constituency of community musicians through work with black and Asian musicians in a variety of programmes. Training and professional development of community musicians is a key theme – from establishing training credentials with the first directory of courses in community music in 1998 through to a pan-artform project looking at the ways participatory artists learn their craft taking place over the next three years. The professional journal, Sounding Board, is a 1,800-page record of the development of community music practice over the past 21 years and the organisation has improved practice by helping develop a wide range of qualifications and accreditation tools over the years. Research and consultation has also figured in the organisation’s work. 154201547982625 Kathryn Deane, Director of Sound Sense, on the new Vocality project The health benefits of singing are well known. Many surveys have revealed that singers agree that singing promotes well-being both for other people and for themselves. Singers often report

sense of well-being. Currently Chair of Sound Sense, she offers training, internships, workshops and conference contributions.

that singing has improved their own physical or mental health and, in England, trials are under way on the potential value of group singing for people with pulmonary disease. But the well-being of a community is as important as the personal health of the people making up that community. A choir can be a catalyst for capacity-building, bringing people together from all ages, races, religions and abilities to achieve a common goal: to create music and have fun. It can give a community and its residents a positive sense of belonging, a positive identity and a focus for community pride. Except that singing doesn’t always bring communities together. Some choirs appeal only to the middle-class areas and many people don’t get a chance to take part. Community choirs tend to be different. Non-auditioned, not requiring musicreading ability, insisting that everyone is able to sing and with a wide repertoire of accessible songs for all, a community choir has the wellbeing of a community at heart. The new Vocality project from Sound Sense and Making Music (the UK association for amateur choirs and orchestras) will be exploring just how far a choir can go in aiding the well-being of a community. Ten new singing groups will be set up across the UK through making contact with local development workers and community leaders to recruit people who want to sing and who wouldn’t normally have the opportunity. As a choir becomes more confident in itself and in its community, it will be supported to take on a life of its own – forming a committee, raising its own funds, hiring its own vocal leader – to encourage not only community well-being but sustainable community well-being.

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State of the Union Educating the next generation is imperative to a civilized society which is why teaching has to be one of the most rewarding and important of vocational careers. Musicians who teach are among the most privileged of teachers as they are passing on their knowledge and skills in a subject that has the power to inspire and to affect lives, says the Musicians’ Union’s National Organiser for Live Performance and Teaching, Diane Widdison.


espite the above, most musicians do not choose teaching as their primary career and many turn to teaching because it is a regular source of income to subsidise a burgeoning playing career. School music at GCSE level does not have a high take-up among pupils and is not seen as being relevant for high-performing pupils – even good musicians. Training institutions, including the conservatoires, acknowledge that most musicians do teach but, unfortunately, teaching is still perceived as being an inferior career to that of a performer. Music in Initial Teacher Training for Primary school teachers is, at best, patchy (although this is set to change under the National Plan for Music Education) – as highlighted in recent Institute of Education research – and, in this academic year, Secondary PGCE music courses have been cut and, in some cases, cancelled completely.

Within this rather glum picture, there is, of course, some fantastic music education going on throughout the UK. Music for Youth’s National Festival in Birmingham showcases the diversity and quality of music-making which is, of course, as a result of amazing and dedicated music teachers working in schools, at Music Services and privately. At the Musicians’ Union, we are very aware that the vast majority of our 30,000 plus members work in education as part of their portfolio career. As well as supporting them through the benefits and services we offer as a trade union, we are

‘The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The Great Teacher inspires.’ William Arthur Ward beginning to address other issues that affect both class and instrumental music teachers. Our partnership with the National Union of Teachers means that between our two unions, we represent the majority of music teachers in the UK. Future joint projects, which will draw on the expertise of both unions, include CPD for non-specialist Primary school teachers and behaviour management for instrumental teachers who take Whole Class instrumental lessons. We also have some joint work planned supporting the Music for Youth Festival series of which both unions are sponsors. With the online teacher database,, we have introduced a kitemarking system with which we are beginning to engage both teachers and parents. MU membership, child protection training and the verification of qualifications are included in the process and teachers are also able to upload testimonials, references and audio and video clips giving prospective pupils a more informed choice. Being a peripatetic music teacher in schools or a private music teacher working at home can present challenges. It is sometimes a solitary existence because of working anti-social hours and

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not feeling part of any musical community. Engaging with the latest developments in music education or what CPD opportunities are available to access can be difficult. We are hoping that future developments with the site will address these issues by producing more accessible resources and the opportunity to share good practice among instrumental and vocal teachers. For those who do choose music teaching as a career, opportunities for promotion, progression and development outside the school situation are limited. As a union, our concern is that the best musicians are attracted to the teaching profession through proper remuneration and conditions and high-quality training. Teaching will only be given the same kudos as a playing career when these issues are addressed. Despite the ever-changing nature of funding structures and music education provision across the UK, it is crucial that access to opportunities for good-quality and diverse music-making is maintained and that the workforce is properly represented and resourced. At the Musicians’ Union, working alongside our partners, we will continue taking the lead on these. Musicians’ Union Contact:


Reviews About the reviewer Title Mrs Carey’s Concert What it is Australian documentary film about music education Directors Bob Connolly and Sophie Raymond Released by Mercury Media Available from

Sue Beckett has worked with pupils, staff and management in her roles as a teacher, adviser, inspector and Music Services’ senior manager. She is currently Head of Portsmouth Music Service, the Lead Partner in the Portsmouth Music Hub, and has worked as a Music Service Evaluation Partner (MSEP) as part of the Federation of Music Services’ MSEP Programme and as a Creativity Consultant. Sue has led training in many parts of Europe and is Music Adviser for Guernsey. She is passionate about African drumming and is the Director of drum4success, providing training for schools, INSET days, school/community workshops and corporate team building.

This is an intriguing documentary film about MLC Burwood, an independent high school for girls in Sydney, which is filmed over an 18-month period. The film has received rave reviews from the Australian press, in particular, praising the award-winning directors, Bob Connolly and Sophie Raymond. The documentary tracks the students’ preparation for the school’s biennial concert at Sydney Opera House. Mrs Carey, the Director of Music, describes the concert as ‘an artistic event for the enrichment of our girls; it’s to give every kid in the school a professional experience’. All 1,200 students are required to participate and the film shows some participating more willingly than others! The film tracks the musical progress of the students alongside some of the behaviour and participation issues and how these are addressed by the school. No doubt, music teachers will empathise with Mrs Carey’s struggle to engage and motivate her students, ensure they attend rehearsals and stay focussed. Mrs Carey imposes her high expectations and quest for excellence on the students and all this is coupled with her mission to ensure everyone does their best whether they want to or not and, at times, regardless of individual student’s personal circumstances. Emily, the soloist and one of the protagonists in the film, discusses the process with Mrs Carey saying, ‘I’m not doubting that the final result will be brilliant… it’s just that the process is a bit tedious sometimes…’ Some of the language and approaches used by the staff and the manner in which they address students in one-to-one meetings and as a group would not generally be deemed appropriate. However, when you look beyond this, the film is a thorough record of the journey that staff and students make in preparing for a prestigious concert. In Mrs Carey’s words, following the final performance at the Sydney Opera House, ‘It’s actually great seeing kids who have different sorts of capabilities, it makes you feel that they’ve come on a journey... I love doing that… We stretch them to do it as best as they are mentally and physically able to because I think they become better people having done it… I think it’s life-changing.’


Title The Genius of Natural Childhood What it is Book using neuroscience to show why nursery rhymes, lullabies, bedtime stories and singing games contain the secrets to thriving children Author Sally Goddard Blythe Published by Hawthorn Press Price £14.99

In The Genius of Natural Childhood, Sally Goddard Blythe, Director of the Institute for Neuro-Physiological Psychology, reintroduces parents and caregivers to activities for young children that have been forgotten by some because of our ever-deepening dependence on technological devices. Children learn to use iPods, DVDs and computers as toddlers but Goddard Blythe reminds us that engaging them with music, movement activities, poetry and prose is not only enjoyable for the children but also good for their developing brains. She explains how music, movement, poetry and prose support children’s psychological and physical development and help prepare them for school. The reader learns about what skills are developing in infancy and early childhood and how music and movement in particular support these developing skills. The first two chapters, which detail the importance of music and movement for young infants, provide the reader with a foundation for the content in the core of the book. Goddard Blythe describes how babies learn through observing, imitating and initiating movement. Movement is integral to early communication through gestures and continues to supplement language throughout life. The author uses examples from neuroscience to illustrate the importance of movement for the developing brain. She provides the reader with the basic sequence of motor development through infancy and early childhood and illustrates this with pictures of infants and children engaged in activities that facilitate the progression through these stages. Goddard Blythe goes on to introduce Lazarev’s theory of pre-natal development. Lazarev is not well known in the child development field but

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

his work is based on a lifetime’s experience as a pre-natal physician in Russia. Goddard Blythe explains that his theory emphasises the use of sound to enhance development before and after birth and that the mother’s voice is the child’s first ‘teacher’. Rhythm and rhyme in children’s songs and poems enhance language learning as the patterns found in language are made explicit in the rhythm of song. Small differences in sound are emphasised by the rhyme. The real treasure in this book is the collection of activities and songs for parents and care-givers in Chapters 3 to 6. Traditionally, songs and games for young children have been passed from one generation to the next. However, in our modern world, the lack of focus on songs and games and the dissolution of extended family (as young parents tend to live further away from their own parents) have caused many of these songs and games to fade from our collective memory. Goddard Blythe organises songs into the categories of lullabies, nursery rhymes, play songs and action games which parents and care-givers can use as their child develops. She provides simple musical arrangements and ideas for how the songs should be used with the child. She illustrates bedtime routines with lullabies that can ease the transition to sleep. She describes the movement associated with singing games and emphasises the skills that children learn from playing these games. For example, small motor control and finger dexterity develop from finger plays like Incy Wincy Spider while large motor control and balance develop from games such as Ring a Ring o’ Roses. Throughout the examples, she also emphasises the part that music plays in language development. As the child hears and sings the songs, he or she is gaining essential language skills that are revealed through rhythm and rhyme. Overall, this book makes the basic principles of the science of child development easy to understand. Goddard Blythe lays out the stages of development and emphasises the importance of the parents’ interactions with the child in enhancing that development. She provides the basic tools for parents and care-givers to lead their children on a journey of discovery of sensation, movement and language through music.

About the reviewer Dr Jennifer Sullivan received her PhD in Psychology from the University of

There are numerous publications in circulation that provide advice on the issue of practising as a musician yet few really grasp the holistic nature of learning an instrument – a synthesis of mind and body – as well as Pedro de Alcantara’s new book, Integrated Practice: Coordination, Rhythm & Sound (The Integrated Musician). As well as being a welcome addition to writing on the subject of the Alexander Technique and the application of its principles to music, the book is a testament to the breadth of the author’s experience as a teacher and he draws upon influences beyond the Alexander Technique and music with real aplomb.  The book is organised into three parts starting with rhythm. This opening part includes a well-paced explanation of prosodic concepts and how they are relevant to music and the chapters here progress well from basic rhythmic structures to larger ‘superbar’ structures. Teachers will find lots of activities that will not only be of interest with regard to their own practice but also to that of their pupils. The author illustrates his ideas with expertly chosen examples and his writing gives one the confidence to apply the concepts to one’s own practice. Classroom teachers will find this section useful when coaching ensembles and chamber groups as there are ideas to help improve rhythmic awareness, regardless of the genre or style of repertoire.  The central part of the book focusses on coordination and it is here that a succinct introduction to the Alexander Technique is given. The chapters in this part do a great deal to increase one’s awareness of the whole body in practising and although some of the activities have seemingly unrelated names (such as ‘the juggler’), there is a great deal to provoke thought. The ‘lessons’ offer plenty of inspiration for instrumental teachers and explore the application of a variety of the author’s activities in different contexts. The final part of the book explores sound and it is excellent to see discussion of the harmonic series as the starting point. Throughout the book, the activities develop sensitivity in one’s listening and this final part does a great deal to help fine-tune aural discernment in the quality of the sound a musician produces on their instrument or with their voice. 

Waterloo. She has been teaching Psychology at St Francis Xavier University since 2003. She is a co-leader with Dr Andrea Rose (Memorial University of Newfoundland) of the Teaching Through Singing team of the AIRS research group and is investigating the effects of singing on language development. Dr Sullivan’s article, Singing with Pre-school children to develop vocabulary knowledge, appears on page 44.

Title Integrated Practice: Coordination, Rhythm & Sound (The Integrated Musician) What it is Resource for musicians and teachers – book & companion website Author Pedro de Alcantara Published by Oxford University Press product/ Price Hardback: £65.00 / Paperback £17.99

Wonderfully presented, the book is accompanied by a companion website that has clips to demonstrate the wealth of activities discussed. It displays an immense amount of care in its conception and its readership deserves to be broad – from the learner to the teacher and performer. I think it works well as a book one can explore over a period of time, testing out activities gradually, yet it could also serve as a resource for suggestions on tackling the difficulties musicians face in the course of learning their instrument.

About the reviewer Steven Berryman recently completed his PhD in composition at Cardiff University. He currently teaches composition and musicianship at Junior Academy and is Assistant Director of Music at North London Collegiate School.

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |


Listings February-March 2012 International Terezin Music Conference 26-27 February 2012 This inaugural conference will mark the official launch of the Terezin Music Hub at Leeds College of Music. Leeds, UK

Performing at the Heart of Knowledge: 3rd International Reflective Conservatoire Conference 17-20 March 2012 Researchers, performers and teachers from all over the world gather to address key issues within music in Higher Education in papers and practical workshops. Guildhall School of Music & Drama, London, UK

Music Freedom Day

3 March 2012 This annual day is marked with events, seminars, exhibitions, radio programmes and newspaper articles on the subject of freedom of expression for musicians all over the world.


Musikmesse Frankfurt 21-24 March 2012 International trade fair for musical instruments, sheet music, music production and music business connections. Frankfurt, Germany

The National Skills Academy’s 3rd Annual Industry Conference

6-7 March 2012 The theme for this event is 'Skills: Return on Investment' with a focus on practical solutions for the sector. The Lowry, Salford, UK

2012 Biennial Music Educators National Conference

29-31 March 2012 With a special focus on research in music education, NAfME’s biennial conference is aimed at music educators and students interested in cutting-edge research and pedagogical innovations. St Louis, Missouri, USA rence

••••••••••••••••• April-July 2012

NAMM Musikmesse Russia / Prolight + Sound NAMM Russia

Park, Malmesbury, Wiltshire, UK

16-19 May 2012 These two new trade shows for the Russian market hope to encourage professional development and music education in the region. Expocenter Krasnaya Presnya, Moscow, Russia


musiclearninglive!2012 12-13 March 2012 Music Education UK’s annual national conference and trade exhibition is designed to inspire EVERYONE working in the sector. The event includes sessions focussing on the National Plan for Music Education. Speakers include Ed Vaizey (above), Jude Kelly, Munira Mirza & James Frankel. Institute of Education, London, UK


The Great Escape Festival 10-12 May 2012 The Great Escape kickstarts the festival season, introducing 15,000 music lovers to the key artists and sounds of the year. Brighton, UK

••••••••••••••••• August 2012 onwards Leeds International Piano Competition

18-20 May 2012 A wide range of performances, insets and keynote speakers plus a chance to meet MMA corporate members. Rugby School, Rugby, Warwickshire, UK

29 August-16 September 2012 A truly international competition with previous prizewinners from 28 countries worldwide, ‘The Leeds’ has helped to start the careers of some of the world’s greatest pianists. University of Leeds, Leeds, UK

Kent Music Summer School

27th International Kodály Seminar and 21st International Kodály Symposium

MMA 2012 conference

July 2012 KMSS residential music courses give young musicians the opportunity to play in wind bands, symphony orchestras, string orchestras, jazz/vocal ensembles & recorder groups. Benenden School, near Cranbrook, Kent, UK

15 July-2 August 2013 An unparalleled combination of summer music education and musical performances. Details available on website from October 2012. Kecskemét, Hungary

Music for Youth National Festival


2-7 July 2012 Packed with inspirational performances, workshops and conferences, this 7-day festival brings together 12,000 of the country’s most exciting young performers. Birmingham, UK

21-24 October 2013 Music Education Singapore’s first international festival of music education for the Asia-Pacific region. Singapore Expo, Singapore.


30th ISME World Conference 2012

2014. Music Education UK’s international festival of music education for Europe. Date and venue to be announced.

ISM conference: ‘Going for Gold’ 12-13 April 2012 Celebrating aspiration, ambition and achievement in composition and music-making. LSO St Luke’s/Guildhall School of Music & Drama, Barbican, London, UK

15-20 July 2012 The International Society for Music Education presents ‘Music Pædeia: From Ancient Greek Philosophers Toward Global Music Communities’. Thessaloniki, Greece

Want to get listed? WOMAD


29-31 July 2012 World of Music, Arts & Dance (WOMAD) brings together artists from all over the globe. Charlton

to browse our complete event listings and to submit your own events to our editorial team.

Music Education UK magazine: February 2012 |

Music Education UK issue 2  

Music Education UK magazine issue 2: February 2012

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