Our Outreach Programme in 2015
< Outreach Programme
This year, thanks to a new, dedicated team of volunteers and some grants from Charitable Trusts and Foundations, we have been able to extend our Outreach Programme further into the community.
During June and July 2015, we delivered 22 workshops involving over 400 people in Luton, Stevenage and Hitchin. We have worked with groups of older people, young people with life-limiting conditions, people with dementia and young people with special educational needs.
We further developed our partnership with Live Music Now to extend our programme into Luton for the first time. This included delivering sessions at Keech Hospice, Woodlands and Richmond Hill schools and Bramingham Centre. We also worked with Music24, a community based organisation which aims to provide quality music services to those most vulnerable and socially isolated in Luton & Bedfordshire.
With thanks to Live Music Now
Live Music Now musicians, African percussionist Alain Rouamba and kora player Josh Doughty, thrilled audiences with a series of participatory performances and workshops. This very much fitted into the spirit of the festival as their traditional instruments and song have been used for centuries to celebrate, bring people together and inspire positive energy:
Rachel Gilbert from Keech Hospice said: ‘Many students that have hearing impairments could hear the drums and this sparked a huge reaction in them. A deafblind student that was thought to have very little hearing was able to register the sound of the drums and was moving his legs in time to the beat and smiling!! AMAZING!! Thank you so much for coming to us. It gives students the opportunity to access live music and for many of our students this is not always a possibility”.
In Hitchin we delivered a number of sessions including one at the Oughtonhead School ‘Pirates and Princesses’ Summer Fete. Martin from Osagyefo delivered a drumming workshop which was attended by, amongst others, Councillor Judi Billing and ROTW Trustee Mike Woodward. Councillor Billing, together with Councillor Derrick Ashley, kindly provided a grant to support our Outreach Programme and Community Arts work in 2015.
Mike Woodward said: ‘I had a great time at the Oughtonhead School Summer Fete, playing the drums with Osagyefo! ROTW is so much more than just one weekend a year and this was one of many outreach events that have been taking place across the area. Many thanks to all those who provide grants to let this invaluable activity happen – including Hertfordshire county councillors Judi Billing (who played along with Osagyefo today!) and Derrick Ashley’.
We were also delighted to be able to invite some of the groups to the festival this year, including a group from First Note – an all ability community music group based in Luton. Teela Hughes, Director of Music 24 said: ‘Rhythms of the World 2015 welcomed First Note with open arms; it was fun, loud and disabled friendly. The group experienced some real high-quality, cultured entertainment in a welcoming and open atmosphere. First Note danced and laughed all afternoon as they soaked up the summery festival vibes! We’d like to thank you for our invitation to ROTW 2015 and for the opportunity to make some fantastic memories together!’
We would like to thank everyone who has provided the funding to make the Outreach Programme possible and our performers – including Sukhi Rayat and Paul Scourfield – who enabled up to deliver these sessions and take Rhythms of the World out into the community.