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Teaching Materials 2015

British Music Education Yearbook

Music Pages
Music Teacher Guide about Music and Dyslexia

Latest News

BBC Music announces Ten Pieces Secondary film presenters

3 September 2015

Presenter Vikki Stone
Presenter Vikki Stone

Presenter Lemn Sissay
Presenter Lemn SissayDominique Brewster

BBC Music has announced the presenters for its Ten Pieces Secondary film, which will be shown across the UK free of charge in October. The hour-long film will feature specially shot performances of the ten pieces featuring the BBC Philharmonic and members of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain, conducted by Alpesh Chauhan.

The presenters are:
  • TV presenter and journalist James May: Bach, orch. Stokowski – Toccata and Fugue in D minor BWV 565 / Soloist: Wayne Marshall
  • Singer Pixie Lott: Bernstein – ‘Mambo‘ from West Side Story
  • Actor Bobby Lockwood and TV presenter and actor Naomi Wilkinson: Bizet – ‘Habanera‘ and ‘Toreador Song‘ from Carmen Suite
  • Comedian and rapper Doc Brown: Anna Clyne – Night Ferry
  • TV presenter and former footballer Dion Dublin: Haydn – Trumpet Concerto (third movement) / Soloist: Alison Balsom
  • Radio 1 presenter Clara Amfo and composer Gabriel Prokofiev: Gabriel Prokofiev – Concerto for Turntables and Orchestra (fifth movement) / Soloist: DJ Mr Switch
  • Poet and Broadcaster Lemn Sissay: Shostakovich – Symphony No. 10 (second movement)
  • TV presenter Molly Rainford: Vaughan Williams – The Lark Ascending / Soloist: Nicola Benedetti
  • Comedian Vikki Stone: Verdi – ‘Dies Irae’ from Requiem / featuring the Hallé Choir
  • Actor Christopher Eccleston: Wagner – ‘Ride of the Valkyries’ from Die Walküre
The trailer for the film can be found here.

Teachers will once again have access to a range of online resources to explore the works in their own lessons, encouraging pupils to respond to the music through composition, dance or art.

The initiative follows in the footsteps of Ten Pieces Primary, which has engaged more than half of UK primary schools (over 11,000 in total) since its launch in autumn 2014. The resources for Ten Pieces Primary will be available throughout 2015/16, with schools encouraged to continue their involvement.

From 28 September – 10 October, Radio 3 will present a Ten Pieces season. Each of the pieces will be played on Breakfast, while Afternoon on 3, CD Review, In Tune and Essential Classics will also feature the chosen works.

Ten Pieces Secondary film presenter Vikki Stone said: ‘I grew up with classical music in my bones, so I am thrilled to part of this wonderful project. It’s important to keep the spirit of classical music alive, as without its influence, we’d have none of the modern music we listen to today.’

Schools can book free cinema tickets now for the nationwide screenings. 

BBC Ten Pieces

Music Teacher September issue is out now!

3 September 2015

Make the most of the new academic year with September’s edition of Music Teacher! We explore the best new repertoire and range of school programmes on offer for West End musicals; the BBC’s Ten Pieces project branches out to secondary schools; and assessing the progress of the Certificate for Music Educators as the revolutionary qualification for instrumental and vocal teachers starts to produce its first graduates. Plus, advice for planning a student tour abroad; Edexcel is ridiculed for the complete absence of women composers from it’s A-level syllabus; how the new term is the perfect time to evaluate how you work with pupils and parents; the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain undergoes a revolution under director Ben Parry; we catch up with Arts Council chief executive Darren Henley as the next government spending review looms into sight; Youth Music Theatre UK and registration opens for Music Education Expo 2016.

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Chris Ling found dead by US Marshals working on abuse case

2 September 2015

Chris Ling, the former Chetham’s School of Music violin teacher who was facing extradition from the US over alleged abuse of pupils, was found dead yesterday by a team of US Marshals sent to arrest him. 

He is believed to have shot himself, aware that the team’s arrival likely signalled the beginning of a judicial process related to Greater Manchester Police’s investigation into historical abuse at Chetham's. 

The investigation has led to the convictions of former Chetham’s director of music Michael Brewer, Brewer’s ex-wife Hilary, former chamber orchestra conductor Nicholas Smith and double bass teacher Duncan McTier (who taught at various institutions including Manchester’s Royal Northern College of Music). It has talked to at least 30 women, and in 2013 said it was investigating ‘about 10 offenders’. 

In June this year, former Chetham’s and RNCM violin teacher Malcolm Layfield was found not guilty of raping a former pupil. During his trial he admitted a number of ‘shameful’ consensual sexual relationships with students, the youngest of whom was 17. 

Ling had moved to the US in the 1990s and ran a successful classical and entertainment talent agency in Los Angeles.

Birmingham Conservatoire creates new harp position for Catrin Finch

1 September 2015

Catrin Finch
Catrin Finch© Sven Sindt

Birmingham Conservatoire has appointed Catrin Finch as its first international chair of harp. The Welsh-born harpist, who served as Royal Harpist to His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales between 2000 and 2004, will join the conservatoire in September.

Conservatoire principal Julian Lloyd Webber said: 'We are delighted that Catrin is joining us as international chair of harp. There is no better – or better known – harpist in the world today and this is a clear indication of where Birmingham Conservatoire is heading.'

Head of strings Louise Lansdown said: 'This appointment places Birmingham Conservatoire at the international forefront of where to study the harp. An inspirational array of orchestral, chamber music, folk, jazz and other themed classes and workshops are planned.'

Fellow harpists Eleanor Turner and Katherine Thomas who will also join the institution's strings department. 

Finch also runs an annual academy and harp fun day which this year brought together 35 harp players of all ages.

Eleanor Gussman appointed chief executive of Spitalfields Music

27 August 2015

Eleanor Gussman has been appointed chief executive of Spitalfields Music.

Gussman will join the organisation from October 2015, leading its festivals and year-round learning and participation programme.

She previously spent eight years at the London Symphony Orchestra (LSO), where she headed the LSO Discovery education programme.  

More recently, she has also acted as a consultant for clients including the London Sinfonietta and the Wellcome Trust.

The announcement comes at a busy time for Spitalfields Music as it prepares to celebrate its 40th anniversary in 2016.

In 2015, in addition to its Summer Festival, the charity also presented its first ever Takeover Spring Festival, curated and produced by pupils at three local Tower Hamlets schools.

Gussman said: ‘I am absolutely delighted to be joining Spitalfields Music in the lead-up to the 40th anniversary in 2016.

‘The organisation’s world-class programming, award-winning education programme and setting in the heart of East London make it irresistible.’

As Head of LSO Discovery, Gussman introduced a new digital platform, LSO Play, and a creative hub for composers at LSO St Luke’s, LSO Soundhub.

Under her leadership, the LSO gave 80 young musicians from East London the opportunity to perform in the opening ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games.

She also helped the orchestra to develop intergenerational community projects in collaboration with the Aix-en-Provence festival, and to embed creative music practice in classrooms across East London through a continuing professional development (CPD) programme.

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