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Multiplying music’s impact

Conferences to help you beat professional isolation

With the change of government and new policies and priorities, it has never been more important for the music education community to clarify further and share its creative vision for the future, to ensure that we continue to build on the successes of recent years and ensure that all young people have the chance to benefit from learning music. Key conferences this year, which will have these

issues high on their respective agendas are provided by the Federation of Music Services (FMS) – 16 to 18 June, Belfast, – and National Association of Music Educators (NAME) in September – further details from

As we embark on yet another period of change in education – likely to be even more far-reaching than any we’ve experienced before - public spending cuts are already taking their toll and so we have to find creative new ways to increase the impact of music education on young people’s development. While the vital work of the music education sector’s umbrella body, the Music Education Council, is developing apace in leading and helping implement change, with the support of its member organisations – notably the Federation of Music Services, the National Association of Music Educators and more recently the Incorporated Society of Musicians – we mustn’t forget that it is the music itself which drives engagement and participation. To that end, Yamaha is supporting several events during 2010, which will help increase the impact of the music itself in helping colleagues either develop their own skills and knowledge, or inspire young people.

East Sussex Music Service’s excellent

electric violin improvising workshop which Yamaha supported last year will receive support again this year. Support includes Yamaha Silent and electric violins and funding Hilary Michael – who has played with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and Academy of Ancient Music and is a tutor on the Fife Youth Jazz Summer Course – to lead an improvising session. In the Autumn term Yamaha percussion artist, Simon Rebello, will perform with the percussion ensemble, Backbeat, at the NAME conference. The company has previously contributed to workshops with Simone and Backbeat, in an intensive Thurrock Music Service workshop and for students at Leeds College of Music.

Bill C Martin, who led the development of Yamaha’s groundbreaking UK group keyboard course, ‘Play For Keeps’, will run a group keyboard arranging workshop for staff working with Norfolk Music Service.


2009 MIBI winners, Polly Mackey and The Pleasure Principle

MIBI 2010

The annual Make it Break it (MIBI) songwriting awards for 14-19s, founded in 2005 by Yamaha and the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts (LIPA) and supported by HMV and EMI, is opening the books once again for the 2010 competition. MIBI aims to bring the young songwriters to the attention of top music industry professionals, including the 2009 team of Chris Martin (Coldplay), Guy Moot (president, EMI Publishing), Steve Levine (producer), Dawn Joseph (singer-songwriter) and Melanie Armstrong (HMV buyer). Details of the 2010 competition, the prizes, the judging panel and general information are all available from the MIBI website:

MusicQuest, a three-year project brought to life by The Prince’s Foundation for Children & the Arts introduced a new generation to the power of live classical music. Working with Yamaha Music UK, Classic FM, the Philharmonia Orchestra and Naxos, 15,000 children across the UK have experienced hands-on classical music workshops and the power of a live orchestral concert, as Yamaha took to the road with Classic FM and the Philharmonia Orchestra. The aim was to help children aged 7-11 in locations with limited access to top-level classical music performances gain greater understanding and enjoyment from classical and orchestral music. The Yamaha workshops for MusicQuest involved the children meeting musicians from the Philharmonia Orchestra at their school in the morning, prior to afternoon concerts in each city. The children were invited to go ‘hands on’ and each try an instrument and learn different percussion rhythms with a professional musician – who they later saw perform on stage.

The aim of MusicQuest was to dispel the myth that classical music is elitist and does little to engage young

MusicQuest, Hull

MusicQuest, Hull

people. The three-year project promoted classical music as exciting and accessible to children of all ages and backgrounds and endorsed the value of classical music in the day-to- day practice of teachers. The Prince of Wales, founder and President of The Prince’s Foundation for Children & the Arts stated, ‘There is no reason why classical music shouldn’t be part of everyone’s life. The tradition, the stories and the emotional power of classical music are available and accessible to everyone. This was the idea behind MusicQuest, my Foundation’s three-year project to give thousands of children a chance to discover why and how classical music is important both in itself and for its ability to change how we think, feel and act.’

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