Pupils from Kings Monkton School in Cardiff are set to benefit from the musical expertise of a pioneering local start up, Music Central.
Developed by two graduates from the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama (RWC), the team will be based at the school for the next year, offering bespoke tuition by more than 25 professional musicians and fellow RWC alumni.
From September 2015, it will work with the school to provide tuition across a range of jazz and classical instruments, as well as additional group classes focusing on music theory and ‘musicianship’ – which includes elements such as singing, composing, rhythm, and sight-reading.
Designed specifically for children under the age of six, ‘Little Music Monster’ classes will also be delivered to primary school pupils to spark an interest in learning how to play an instrument and develop musicality skills early on.
To kick off the collaboration, Kings Monkton pupils ended their school term with an exclusive concert and interactive music session where students were invited to try out the instruments for themselves.
The ‘Big Bang Concert’ featured more than 20 different solo instruments including strings, woodwind and brass instruments as well as harp, voice, guitar and drums. The audience enjoyed live performances of musical pieces ranging from Mozart classics to jazz hits and world music that were complemented by singing, clapping and dancing.
Paul Norton, principal at Kings Monkton School, said of the collaboration: “We are proud to offer a fantastic range of extra-curricular activities and peripatetic teaching to ensure our pupils have as many different choices available to them as possible, and this new collaboration is one of our most exciting yet.
“With studies showing that children who learn music and tap into their creative skills can do better at STEM subjects including maths and science, it is our hope that our pupils will benefit greatly from the support of Music Central, not to mention the opportunity to hear from the local young entrepreneurs behind the business. Thanks to the extensive offerings of Music Central and the unique way they challenge children to think about music, our students will be encouraged to explore their creative talents and express themselves through whichever form of music they choose.”
Founder of Music Central, Immanuel Voigt, said: “We’re really excited to be working with Kings Monkton on this collaboration and to help give its pupils a taste of what instrument playing is really like, and hopefully even inspiring some budding musicians in the process.
We want to work with the school to help it stand out among all other schools in South Wales, by establishing a very high standard of musicianship among its pupils, as well as having a choir, an orchestra and a brass band to show off at public events.”
A Kings Monkton pupil, who will be taking part in the classes from September, said: “As someone who’s never thought of playing an instrument, today’s concert really inspired me to think of instruments and music lessons in a different light. I’m looking forward to starting lessons with Immanuel and the rest of the Music Central team in September, I like the idea of having something extra-curricular to offer on my future university applications and I think it’s a good opportunity to test my creative skills too.”