City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra (CBSO)

Our Musical Leadership Project involves multi art forms of instrumental and choral music and creative writing, led by the CBSO Artistic Team: comprising: Composer Jeremy Clay, CBSO Lead Musician Jackie Tyler, Children’s Author Mandy Ross and a CBSO Choral Leader. Each year a new theme is chosen which becomes the focus for creative work with both primary and secondary students.  Ideas are arranged and scored for full orchestra and this leads to a number of workshops where students have sectional rehearsals with CBSO players and tutti rehearsals with a visiting conductor. The work produced is shared publicly both at the academy and in high profile venues including Symphony Hall and The CBSO Centre.  Over a five year partnership, the academy’s orchestra has developed significantly, now with over 40 members compared to just 12 three years ago.

In addition to the orchestra there has always been a vocal strand to the project with local feeder primary schools taking part in the project. Our a capella group has also been involved in the workshops over the last three years with students being involved in the lyric writing aspect of the composition work and also participating in the final performances.

Students are clearly inspired by the visiting musicians. There is now an established tradition of orchestral work at Shenley Academy and a strong relationship with the organisation that goes from strength to strength.


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