We seek to nourish and develop the natural instinct of young people to engage with music, and the opportunities we provide run from primary school right through to outstanding young soloists on the threshold of shining professional careers.
There is huge flexibility in what we provide. Here are four examples:
SPO musicians go into schools and work with young musicians following careful consultations with head teachers and music teachers about the needs and opportunities in the school. So before we play, we listen. Sometimes our players coach students preparing for exams, or workshop with children learning instruments. They can sit in with players in their existing orchestra to inspire and encourage, or, in some schools, give relaxed, friendly performances in front of the whole school, with lots of opportunity for questions, answers and demonstrations or instruments and musical ideas. Our absolute flexibility means we can deliver what will be most helpful to those particular young people.
Young players who are already well advanced are invited to sit shoulder-to-shoulder with our top professionals during the on-the-day rehearsals for SPO main concerts. They learn how top professionals put together a polished and engaging performance in the limited rehearsal time, and without exception the come away inspired. This activity is strongly supported by Suffolk County Music Service, and many of the players who take up this opportunity are members of the County Youth Orchestra and other County ensembles.
SPO was approached by West Suffolk College to give a live performance of an outstanding student composition. The performance was given at a major concert at The Apex in Bury St Edmunds to much acclaim. We are keen to develop this kind of engagement.
Our longstanding association with the Young Concert Artists Trust, a charity of national standing which manages star soloists during the early years of their professional careers, we provide performance opportunities to some of the most exciting performers.