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This Spring-term we welcome two new Music Leaders to Community Arts North West’s (CAN) Kámoši Roma-heritage Music-making programme 2017-18.

Graham Proctor is our new Principle Music Leader and is working with the Kámoši children to create two very special performances. The first is to celebrate International Romani Day on 7th April 2018 and the second is a performance for Leigh Carnival on 10th June 2018.

Graham is a Percussionist, Composer and Music Director who trained at the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM). He is also a part of Manchester International Roots Orchestra (MIRO), a unique musically diverse orchestra that nurtures musical collaboration between refugee and other culturally diverse musicians, and RNCM students.

Graham says “I am very excited by the prospects of this amazing opportunity, learning more about Roma-heritage and supporting the children’s musical development”.

We also welcome Sarah Atter who will be bringing additional Music Leader skills and support to Kámoši Juniors. Sarah is a Flautist, Creative Practitioner and Music Teacher, who also trained at RNCM. Sarah has extensive experience of education and music and is also a committed and passionate chamber musician as a member of The Sterling Trio, Da Capo Duo, Argentum Flutes and the Dove Duo.

Graham and Sarah will be working together to support the Kámoši Juniors and we look forward to hearing more about how it goes.

Funded by Youth Music and Children In Need, this programme brings together children from Roma-heritage, other culturally diverse backgrounds and locally-based children, all living in the Wigan Borough of Leigh.

Children from Community Arts North West’s (CAN) Kámoši Roma-heritage Music-making programme 2017-18 celebrated their artistic achievements at the end of the Autumn term 2017, with an exciting performance inspired by Tim Burton’s Nightmare before Christmas. To make the day really special it even snowed!

Devised with the help of Music Leader Jess Stannage and Drama Worker Jana Kennedy, Christmas battles with Halloween to take control of the festive season.

Aptly named ‘The Big Battle for December’, twenty-five children aged five to eleven years-old performed new songs and musical compositions, dance sequences, drama scenes and comedy to an appreciative audience of family, friends, volunteers, partner organisations, and local people at Sacred Heart Church Hall in Leigh (Wigan Borough).

The group displayed great talent, creativity, innovation and humour. One parent commented, “I thought the performance was fantastic, so much commitment and hard work goes in from the young people and the staff. I can’t wait to see the next performance on a bigger stage”.

The children meet every Saturday morning, and explore new songs, music styles and performance techniques in these popular workshops, which are often the highlight of the children’s week.

Funded by Youth Music and Children In Need, this programme brings together children from Roma-heritage, other culturally diverse backgrounds and locally-based children, all living in the Wigan Borough of Leigh.



Mind the Music is a three year programme supporting young people with mental health issues, through music making. 
As part of the programme, Community Music is offering a series of training sessions for music and arts leaders across London. 
Anyone currently working with, or interested in working with, young people using the creative arts can benefit from this training. 
This first day-long training session will be held on Friday March 9th, at the Brady Arts Centre, in Whitechapel, London.

The session will be led by Jo Stockdale from the Child Learning and Development Advisory Centre. Jo looks at how new neuroscientific research can support our practice as arts leaders, focussing on how the brain develops throughout childhood and adolescence, providing a basis for further understanding of different mental health conditions, which we will look at more in depth in future training sessions.

  • by ITV

    Mon 26 Feb 2018

We have launched a singing competition on ITV's Good Morning Britain for an unsigned singing group.  If you want to know more keep reading.

Thank you

Join our fully booked course and work alongside three West End performers to create an original Musical production. At the end of the week, you'll have a chance to share your hard work in a performance, joined by one of Wicked's leading stars, Oliver Thompsett. Led by Lucy Thatcher, (Mrs Wormwood in the original cast of Matilda) and vocal coach and West End performer, Rachel Lynes, participants will enjoy an incredible week of acting, singing and dancing, creating a unique version of Wicked and the Wizard of Oz, including original West End choreography, songs and scenes. 



This blog aims to share our methodologies and philosophies when working with Looked After Children, which led to the huge success of "And The Beat Goes On 2".

This is the story of 4 lads working with My Pockets to find thier own sound.

Why it is important to support emerging music leaders

In the final part of my blog about how we can support young people  and their mental health through the arts, I discuss how we have begun to embed mental health champions into our young people's delivery team as well as proactively promoting the positive impact of engaging with the music projects we already offer.

JW was asked to deliver a 5 minute presentation for Friday 16th February at the Ordinary Arts Festival Seminar.  The seminar speakers were all asked to focus their presentation on addressing 2 questions:

What barriers does your organisation present in offering access to disabled young people?
What barriers do you face form other organisations or society when designing your offer for disabled young people?

Here’s a transcription JW’s presentation ;

‘Hi  I’m Jane Williams, Director of The Turning Tides Project. We aim to make equal access to music, the arts and life a reality for people with ‘learning disability’ or ‘autism’ labels.  

We only have 2 rules:

Everything we do seeks to demonstrate the Social Model Approach , in action
We don’t do anything unless we think it will be fun.

I was struggling with preparing this presentation . When I asked myself why I found I had 2 issues :

Even if you talk fast, you can’t say much in 5 minutes: How will I make sure I say the things that matter?
I’m not sure that making seminar presentations is fun

Then it occurred to me, I just needed to be who am and demonstrate what The Turning Tides Project is. A 5 minute presentation might not be long but 3 1/2 minutes is the perfect length for a hit song.
So here’s ours. It’s called  ‘Who are the Experts?' and we wrote it for you - enjoy and do feel free to join in.'

Is an approach to inclusion organisational progress?
Or a statement of a fall-back position to exclude?
Who invented our indicators and outcome jargon?
Did disabled young people write our rules?
Who are the experts?
Self-appointed inclusion experts
Our reaching out makes us hard to reach
Equal access makes us all redundant
That’s the position we need to preach
Who are the experts?
Who are the experts?
 instrumental break 
Who are the experts?
Who are the experts?
The detail that matters is not our detail
Is anyone really hard to reach
If it was fun, cool and useful it wouldn’t be me
Standing here making this speech
Who are the experts?
Who are the experts?
Who are the experts?

Once we’ve recorded it, you’ll be able to download ‘Who are The Experts’ and hear some of the other original music of The Tuning Tides Project at:

Supporting quieter members of a group – my techniques for ensuring everyone is involved from a shadow artist point of view.