Through generous donations from our supporters, grants from charitable foundations and support from the local business community we have helped to fund projects created and delivered by the Camden Music Service and music hub partners that reach out across Camden and include hard-to-reach families and children.
Four-year scholarships for talented children
Our scholarships ensure that musically talented children from low-income families living in Camden can continue to fulfil their potential. By offering the full support they need for the four-years between free school lessons in primary school and when music lessons becomes available for music GCSE's at secondary schools.
We now support over 35 children including Amina (not her real name). Amina’s school applied for a scholarship for her. The music co-ordinator at her school reported that “Amina is an incredibly talented young musician. She writes her own music and lyrics to a high-performance level and has a distinct talent for harmony and melody”. Amina is not academically a high-achiever, and music is her way of expressing herself and achieving to a high standard. Music gives her a confidence that she wouldn’t get through other subjects.
Somers Town and Haverstock sinfonia projects
The first Somers Town Sinfonia, formed in summer 2015 and funded by YPCF, involved 30 children, aged 8 to 10 years, and parents from three local primary schools; St Mary & St Pancras, St Aloysius Junior and Richard Cobden. The project was an instant success with the children coming together to practice and play as part of an orchestra, creating a special sound, building a love of music, making new friends whilst developing their musical talents. “The children were completely buzzing after their first rehearsal and went back to school telling their classmates proudly how they are part of a 'real orchestra'” Music Teacher, Richard Cobden Primary School.
Building on the success of 2015, and further external funding secured by Camden Music Trust, the Sinfonia expanded to involve an additional school, Argyle Primary. This additional funding has enabled Camden Music Service to employ a mentor with the remit of working with parents and children to help them access further provision. This has proved extremely successful, with more children becoming involved in further music learning and has lead to the creation of the Entry Level Orchestra, at Camden Music’s Saturday school.
Camden Schools’ Music Festival 2020
A big part of learning music is performing. The Camden Schools' Music Festival is a wonderful community event that truly captures the energy, creativity and inclusive nature of the borough. Held biennially, the festival is a flagship event that is the pinnacle of the exceptional music education delivered by Camden council’s music service. The event brings together parents, teachers, councillors, celebrities and invited guests from across Camden’s community.
“This is a completely uplifting endeavour in which thousands of children in a challenging inner-city London Borough are given the chance to explore and develop the music that is within them. I confess to bias in this matter – I enjoy the honour of compering the wondrous bi-annual event at London’s Albert Hall. This event alone speaks to the incredible spirit of music education in Camden. I am more than proud to support Camden Music Trust in nurturing, sustaining, and growing music in schools in Camden”. Jon Snow, Broadcaster and Journalist
A New World Created
The New Created World band includes pupils and teachers from four Camden Schools who worked with students from the Royal Academy of Music and players from the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment. The team of musicians, under the leadership of James Redwood, set about composing the piece to perform at the Royal Albert Hall at the Camden Schools' Music Festival 2020.
All Together Now project
The ‘All Together Now’ project created the opportunity for 120 primary school children, who were new to music, to play a newly composed piece at the Camden Schools’ Music Festival with a view to increasing participation in music making opportunities beyond the project by supporting these young players in their musical journey.
In October 2019, Camden Music Trust organised a crowdfunding campaign, successfully raising over £17,000 thanks to its active community of supporters and the Arts Council England who offered match-funding for the project. “The goal is to get parents, as well as the children, on board so that they continue to make music long after the project ends. It will also help parents fully appreciate how special music is to children’s development,” Esther Caplin, Chair of the Camden Music Trust.
The Great Camden Musical Instrument Revival
There is a growing demand for quality instruments for children to learn on.
Camden Music Trust help fund the purchase of new and restoration of pre-loved instruments, so children have good quality instruments to learn on to provide positive feedback to practising and performance.
The Great Camden Musical revival included a sponsored 10k run to raise £10k to restore a huge number of second-hand instruments; violins, cellos, trumpets, bassons, that had been generously donated to the Trust. The team of runners made up of parents, teachers, music staff and volunteers, ran 10k in Regent’s Park in March 2019 and managed to smash our target and raise £18,000. The instruments are now restored and are actively being used by children in the community.
Jazz Connect is Camden based music programme that aims to increase awareness of jazz amongst children and young people and encourage the involvement of young women in jazz. This innovative project is the brainchild of Camden Music Hub partners, conservatoires, professional artists and national jazz organisations who all have a passion for the British Jazz music scene.
The two-year programme has been devised to address the needs identified by schools and partners to help extend and build on current provision and progress quality and opportunities for young musicians.
Jazz Connect will create an additional tier to the existing out-of-school Jazz ensembles offered by Camden Music Service. What makes this initiative unique is that children and young people involved in Jazz Connect will get to work with inspirational professional musicians including the Loop Collective, Pete Churchill, Professor of Jazz Composition, Royal Academy of Music, and Camden Music Service alumna Nubya Garcia. Focusing on vibrant jazz music the project aims to engage younger and female musicians in particular, and to develop and sustain their interest and, longer term, to change the profile of British jazz.
This new initiative has been made possible as a result of substantial funding from the Arts Council and the aspirational members of the Camden Music Hub, who recognise the exciting opportunity to bring Jazz into mainstream primary schools to ensure we develop potential talent into professional music careers.