Acclaimed folk musician Kathryn Tickell has been singing the praises of players of People's Postcode Lottery following their support of Youth Music, a charity that brings music into the lives of over 90,000 children each year. Youth Music provides opportunities for young people in disadvantaged areas to learn how to play an instrument, participate in song writing workshops and even develop music production skills. This year, our players awarded this wonderful organisation with a whopping £100,000 to enable even more children from a variety of backgrounds to make music.
The Mango Music Shed, a Youth Music project, has seen 700 children at Holy Trinity First School in Berwick, Scotland take part in extracurricular music lessons. Pupils have been learning how to play the steel pans and guitar in a large portacabin which has been installed on the grounds of the school.
With classes covering everything from Caribbean beats to melodic folk styles, these school children have been able to develop their knowledge of different musical traditions around the globe. The project culminated in a vibrant concert at The Maltings Theatre where students showed off what they had learned to their family and friends.
Kathryn Tickell visited the school to find out how the children were getting on with the project and to demonstrate some of her own music-making skills. "Here in Berwick it's fantastic to see the children playing instruments. I never fail to be moved by that. And to see them being so excited by music,” she said. "A crucial thing here is that the music is going to be part of the community. It's going to be embedded into the fabric of the community.”
Projects like these are not only beneficial to the students involved. Joe Benjamins, a Music Leader in the Youth Music Orchestra, was keen to stress the importance Youth Music has had in his own life. "Being within this field is incredible really. It feels like you make a real contribution to something unlike a lot of work I've had previously," he said. "You feel like you are making a difference in the community and you feel like a real part of something.”