Young people's ensemble

Banded About - creative ensembles

BCMG was a partner in Banded About, one of five DCSF Music Partnership Projects in England in 2009-2010. The project involved Birmingham Music Hub partners – BCMG, CBSO, Birmingham Jazz and Town Hall Symphony Hall – and other partners Sound It Out Community Music and Birmingham Music Service.

Young people from five clusters of Birmingham schools benefited from a range of creative ensemble music making led by professional musicians working in partnership with their teachers. All the young participants also experienced live music performed in the City by each of the partner organisations and gave concerts of their own at some of Birmingham’s most internationally renowned venues.

One of the project’s aims was to support the transition between Key Stage 2 and 3 in schools, by inspiring primary school children to continue with their music making when they reach secondary school. A second aim was to explore the pedagogy of working collaboratively and creatively as part of a mixed ensemble, the rationale being that traditional school ensembles are not necessarily the best way to include the wide range of instrumentalists or abilities often found in schools. BCMG worked with young people aged 9 to14 from Lordswood Girls’ School and three of its feeder primary schools – City Road, Our Lady of Fatima Catholic and St Peter’s Church of England Primary Schools.

The project also provided continuing professional development for musicians and teachers from all the partner organisations, who also made music as part of their own creative ensemble.