Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Youth Music Mentees (Camden, London)

We are looking for young disabled musicians aged 15-25 living, studying or working in the London Borough of Camden to take part in our exciting new mentoring programme.

You will get the opportunity to work with one of three music mentors for 10 hours (over 5 weeks), with support from our music technologist.  Our mentors are all highly experienced disabled musicians.

The mentor programme will help you:

*Set goals
*Encourage areas of talent
*Build your confidence
*Develop you as an artist
* Support your progression in music

Whether you play an instrument, sing, use Assistive Music Technology or compose, either as a solo artist or as a band or collective, the mentoring programme could support you (for example in highlighting areas for development, making connections and networking, setting up your own gigs or music installations, broadening your existing influences or listening, widening your audience, career development and personal development).

This FREE opportunity is open to young disabled musicians working, living or studying in the Camden borough who:
*Are aged 15-25
*Play a musical instrument (including Assistive Music Technology such as Soundbeam or switches), or sing or compose music
*Have a keen interest in their own development as an artist
*Are considering music either as a career or as a route to personal development, or both
*Are either a solo artist or a group
*Are passionate about music!

To apply for a place on the programme or to apply on behalf of a young person you work with please request an Information Pack by calling 020 7739 5444, 
by email or 
by post to Drake Music, 35-47 Bethnal Green Road, London, E1 6LA

Wednesday, 8 July 2009

London updates

Connecting across Difference

We have now completed the evaluation process for this project.  As you know, the final performance was in March 2009 and the whole project was a huge success.  We are currently feeding back to funders and will use the evaluation documentation for future funding bids and to inform the way we work in London and in other regions. 

Holloway Arts Festival

Anya Ustaszewski and Gary Day have just completed a series of 5 workshops at The Bridge School as part of this project.  The children there have composed a piece of music plus a percussion part which accompanied the Holloway Arts Festival procession on 4th July (the percussion part was performed by children from two other schools in the borough). 

The theme for the day (which included projects led by other artists and organisations including costume-making, poetry-writing and other fun activities) was the score of Alice Through the Looking Glass, a musical play composed by Stephen Daltry.  Gary and Anya had the opportunity to visit Stephen at his home prior to starting the work to go through his score and discuss his inspiration/composition. 

Youth Music Mentor programme

Drake Music has been commissioned by Sound Connections as part of their Youth Music Mentor programme.  It is funded by Youth Music and each partner organisation is paid a fee of £7500 to deliver mentoring to 10 young musicians in a specific borough.  We are representing Camden, however by prior arrangement we have left 3 spaces open to students at George Green school in Tower Hamlets.  

Anya, Victoria and Melanie (our 3 CAD associate musician mentees) are the adult mentors delivering the programme.  It is a really exciting step in their development and we will bring in Daryl and Lynn (our 2 CAD mentors) to offer some support to them over the course of the programme.  It is also a chance for the 3 mentors to take the lead on the project and have a more substantial input into the development and planning of this kind of work.  Nick Wilsdon will continue to work as music technologist on this project and support the young musicians with any practical or technical advice.  We are currently in the planning stages and hope to start the delivery of the mentoring at the end of summer/beginning of September.

Melanie will also take on the role of project co-ordinator for this project, with support from me as I am currently managing the London programme.

The Orpheus Centre

Following the success of our 9-week series of sessions led by Gary at the Orpheus Centre a residential performing arts centre run by Richard Stilgoe (one of our patrons), I met with Danny Bravermen who is head of their learning/education and outreach work.  I am currently liaising with them and planning a programme for the whole of the academic year 2009-10.  Their focus is on personal development and independence, so this is an interesting partnership for future work.  

THAMES/Beatrice Tate School

Beatrice Tate school was one of the partners for CAD.  We have been approached by THAMES to deliver a further project at the school on their behalf (as they currently do not have any practitioners specialising in music for disabled children/young people).  I am liaising with THAMES about costs (as the cost to the school is below our current full-cost recovery, THAMES may choose to subsidise some of the work).  The project would be for 4-week chunks of work at the start of each term (so a total of 12 weeks) 2 sessions per week. 

Disability Awareness Event

Victoria Oruwari performed at the Disability Awareness Event at Guy’s Hospital on 24th June.  This performance has been paid for by Guy’s Hospital and she will be sang a 10 minute set of 3 varied songs.  The audience and staff were hugely impressed.


  • Roundhouse: we have given them a quote for a joint project, there will also be other opportunities in the future for partnerships.
  • Individuals: We currently get quite a few enquiries for individual sessions.  Some of these might be paid for by the individual musician through new ways of receiving social services support.  Unfortunately at present we aren’t able to offer anything for people who aren’t able to pay for the service (or fund it somehow).  Ideally I would like to look at developing options for individual sessions/adult group work that might be open for people to attend.  At the moment we don’t have the capacity to even start to plan this work.
  • George Green: I am in liaison with George Green school who want some more work in the new academic year.  We will finalise what they want within the next few weeks (before the end of term) and hope to start delivery in September.
  • I am submitting a funding application to Goldsmith’s Company Charity to support the programme in the London region, at present we are only working for fees and always at full cost.
Anna (Betty) xx