"If the Vocal Futures model does not provide a visionary example of how to develop the young audiences of the future, nothing will.” - Stephen Fry
The Vocal Futures tripartite model of (1) ‘Induction’ workshop, (2) ‘Conduction’ performance, and (3) ‘Outduction’ follow-up period forms the backbone of the charity’s work. For this third project of the Vocal Futures pilot phase we have devoted much more time and resources to the final Outduction period – the phase in which the charity provides our Young Ambassadors (YAs) with opportunities to attend further concerts and events by other organisations, to help them capitalise on the experience of classical music we have shared with them and for them to form a lifelong habit of concert-going.
For this project’s Outduction we have recruited a focus group of 11 Young Ambassadors from across all of the participating Pods. The group meets regularly to offer feedback on our work to date and advice on how to present further concert opportunities so as to appeal to their peers. The focus group also play an ambassadorial role in their schools and universities by encouraging their friends to attend this further series of free concerts.
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Thank you to everyone who came to support us in our lastest production - The Choice.
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Photos by Nick Rutter
18th April 2015: An inspiring planning meeting yesterday with Cambridge social workers for our next project in October:
April 2nd 2015, Congratulations to soprano Mary Bevan (who played Gabriel in our Creation performance) who has been nominated for an RPS award!
23rd March 2015, Register now for the next Scratch Youth Messiah!(2pm, 29th November 2015, Royal Albert Hall)
Winner of the Best Classical Music Education Initiative at the Music Teacher Awards for Excellence last week, The Scratch Youth Messiah promises to be an amazing and inspiring project for young singers, and will be conducted by Vocal Futures founder, Suzi Digby OBE.
5th March 2015, Vocal Futures' Assistant Conductor and Orchestral Manager, Ben Glassberg, has just been awarded a scholarship to study for a Masters Degree in Conducting at the Royal Academy of Music, from September 2015. Ben assisted Suzi on our Haydn Creation project and is very much looking forward to continuing his work with Vocal Futures, alongside his conducting studies with Sian Edwards.
2nd March 2015, Tenor, Matthew Long, who sang the role of Uriel in Vocal Futures 2013 production of Haydn's Creation, has released his debut solo album. With accompaniment by renowned accompanist Malcolm Martineau, the London Philharmonic Orchestra, and guitarist Rufus Miller, Till the Stars Fall is a collection of English song and British and Irish Folk repertoire in celebration of some of our finest music.
We are delighted to have been shortlisted for the Best Classical Music Education Initiative award at the Music Teacher Awards for Excellence, 2014. Although we did not win the award, we would like to thank everybody who voted and supported us.
"The Best Classical Music Education Initiative will honour an education project which has used classical music in an innovative way, shown musical excellence and had a positive impact on a significant number of participants.
The six nominees for the Best Classical Music Education Initiative were chosen by a selection panel chaired by Thomas Lydon, editor of Music Teacher magazine. The panel judged potential nominees against the following criteria: musical excellence, impact, innovation.
Any classical music education initiative based in the UK was eligible for this award, but the panel felt strongly that the following six initiatives scored highest against the agreed criteria."
You can now listen to our BBC Radio 3 In Tune interview back in December as presenter Sean Rafferty talks to soprano soloist Mary Bevan (Gabriel) and director Patrick Kinmonth about our Creation production:
"As music students our passion for classical music is incredibly close to our hearts, but it is not a passion that is overly easy to share with our peers. It is certainly no secret that interest in classical music, specifically within my demographic, is at a significant low point right now; a point I know from experience as I myself was completely alone in my love for classical music amongst my friends during school, and it was only once I had arrived at University that I met like-minded people.
I remember when I first met Suzi she used a term that has stuck with me, one I find myself constantly repeating and relating to, and indeed finding relevance to many situations I find myself in. Suzi spoke of our "cultural diet", a term I initially found interesting as I realised we see in the media all too often concerns for our nutritional diet but it seems our cultural diet is been overlooked somewhat. Unlike the young people of yesteryear we cannot simply 'stumble' upon classical music. We cannot flick through television channels or magazines and accidentally come across classical music, therefore rending it a case of unless we ourselves set out to discover it the only hope we stand is if our parents bring us up with classical music firmly within our "cultural diet".
It is because of this that I, and I speak on behalf of all my fellow students involved, believe Vocal Futures is such a fantastic project. It is providing a gateway for new audiences, and is potentially the way to bridge this gap once and for all. Moreover, it seems even more fitting that Haydn's 'The Creation' be chosen as the piece of focus as this project really could be the creation of something very special, and the future of classical concert-goers and the concerts themselves."
– Will, 20
Archived news items can be found here