If a child isn’t learning a musical instrument by age 8 they may never start. We aim to inspire the 2327 Year 3 children in Bedford Borough to learn to play music via the power of live performance. All our gigs will be followed up by a clear communication campaign about options for lessons in Bedford Borough for parents. A bursary fund to support at least 30 disadvantaged children to access a 'taster term' of 1-1 lessons.
Just imagine: Buskers in the playground, a rock band in assembly, a baroque quartet in the library or a cellist in the canteen
There are 54 primary schools in Bedford Borough, and we want to reach all of them. We will provide a free gig, a 'learning to play' pamphlet (to make clear all of the music options for year 3 children) for every child and at least 30 bursaries for those who haven't been able to afford to try.
This is a collaboration with Music Live, Bedford Music Co-operative, the Philharmonia Orchestra, The Culture Challenge and Pad Presents.
What we'll deliver:
- 54 gigs in 54 schools
- A 'learning to play' pamphlet in every year 3 school bag
- 30 'taster term' bursaries
- Intensive support by The Philharmonia for the bursary recipients who have chosen an orchestral instrument
Why it's a great idea:
The joy of live music is something everyone loves to experience, but for children the benefits are extraordinary. Childhood is the peak time to learn to play & being able to play opens up a lifetime of potential to enjoy and express themselves. The Cultural Learning Alliance has robust research showing that musical knowledge makes a positive difference to engagement and attainment in their broader learning too.
Let's not expect children to want learn to play before they have heard, seen and felt live music. Instead let's inspire children with live music and let's practically support their early explorations in music.
In a context of cuts to music provision, charges to families for music lessons, and a rising number of families struggling to get by the musical opportunities for children are shrinking, especially so for those from poorer families. The orchestras and bands, the concert halls and small music venues need both the musicians and audiences of the future.
Kids need gigs!
Steps to get it done:
- Create the menu of gigs and dates for schools
- Promote gigs for kids to all Bedford Borough Schools
- Contract all musicians
- Design, print and distribute the 'learning to play' pack
- Promote and administer the 'taster term' bursaries
- Administer 54 gigs to schools
- Evaluate the impact of the programme.
Music for Bedford Borough is collaborating with The Philharmonia Orchestra, the Bedford Music Co-operative and Music Live to provide these concerts, which will be a broad mix of music styles from rock, jazz, funk and classical music. Bedford Creative Arts and The Culture Challenge will be active partners in this programme. Pad Presents, the managers of Bedford's independent small music venue, Esquires are supporting the programme through a social media campaign to broaden the appeal.
The Philharmonia have pledged extra support for all children in receipt of bursaries.
All concerts will be offered to schools free of charge, and bursaries will be allocated on need by a panel from the partners above and according to set criteria.