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Autumn 2015 Concerts

Wed 25th Nov, 7pm: Youth Concert Band, Brass Band, Intermediate Concert Band and Junior Concert Band, The Shirehall, Hereford.

Thurs 26th Nov at 7pm: Intermediate Strings, Junior Strings, Starter Strings, Starter Concert Band & Ukulele Ensemble, The Shirehall, Hereford.

Each ensembles has a short pre-concert rehearsal at the Shirehall, timetable as follows:

Wed 25th Nov Shirehall Arrival time for tuning etc Rehearsal time
Brass Band 5.00pm 5.10—5.30pm
Junior Concert Band 5.20pm 5.30—5.50pm
Youth Concert Band 5.40pm 5.50—6.10pm
Intermediate Concert Band 6.00pm 6.10—6.30pm



Thurs 26th Nov  Shirehall Arrival time for tuning etc Rehearsal time
Intermediate Strings 4.40pm 4.50—5.10pm
Junior Strings 5.00pm 5.10—5.30pm
Starter Strings 5.20pm 5.30—5.50pm
Ukulele Ensemble 5.45pm 5.55—6.15pm
Starter Concert Band 6.10pm 6.20—6.40pm














Jesse Norman (MP) at Marlbrook Primary School


Jesse Norman (MP) joining in with a Herefordshire Music Service Wider Opportunities lesson at Marlbrook Primary School on Friday 23rd October 2015; pictured along with Cliff Woollard, Head of Herefordshire Music Service and colleagues from Arts Council England and Music Mark

BBC Ten Pieces for High School Pupils



BBC Music has today announced the presenters for its brand new Ten Pieces Secondary film, which will launch for schools in cinemas across the UK in October. Commissioned and produced by BBC Learning and delivered in conjunction with the BBC Performing Groups, the project is designed to introduce a generation of children to classical music and has been extended to secondary schools with a new selection of music for students and teachers to explore.

Schools can book FREE cinema tickets now for the nationwide screenings via

The film stars the BBC Philharmonic, which is the BBC’s flagship orchestra for the North, and is based in Salford. It is conducted by Alpesh Chauhan, playing side-by-side with members of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain, and soloists Nicola Benedetti, Alison Balsom, and DJ Mr Switch, alongside the Hallé Choir. It showcases the Ten Pieces of music that are the basis of the project – representing a wide range of styles and eras relevant to the secondary music curriculum. Each piece is introduced by celebrity presenters, using an engaging mix of live action and animation. The film is designed to act as an exciting gateway to orchestral music, stimulating students and teachers to respond creatively to the repertoire.

The hour-long cinematic film is made by BBC Music Television and independent production company Somethin’ Else and features specially shot performances of the ten pieces at Victoria Warehouse in Manchester.

The Ten Pieces II film trailer is now available to view here.

The presenters of the Ten Pieces II film are:

  • TV presenter and journalist James May: J. S. Bach, orch. Stokowski – Toccata and Fugue in D minor BWV 565 / Soloist: Wayne Marshall
  • Singer Pixie Lott: Bernstein – ‘Mambo’ from Symphonic Dances from ‘West Side Story’
  • Actor Bobby Lockwood and TV presenter and actor Naomi Wilkinson: Bizet – ‘Habanera’ and ‘Toreador Song’ from ‘Carmen Suite’
  • Comedian and rapper Doc Brown: Anna Clyne – Night Ferry
  • TV presenter and former footballer Dion Dublin: Haydn – Trumpet Concerto (3rd movement) / Soloist: Alison Balsom
  • Radio 1 presenter Clara Amfo and composer Gabriel Prokofiev: Gabriel Prokofiev –Concerto for Turntables and Orchestra (5th movement) Soloist: DJ Mr Switch
  • Poet and Broadcaster Lemn Sissay: Shostakovich – Symphony No. 10 (2nd movement)
  • TV presenter Molly Rainford: Vaughan Williams – The Lark Ascending / Soloist: Nicola Benedetti
  • Comedian Vikki Stone: Verdi – ‘Dies Irae’ from ‘Requiem’
  • Actor Christopher Eccleston: Wagner – ‘Ride of the Valkyries’ from ‘Die Walküre’

The second year of the Ten Pieces project builds on the success of Ten Pieces Primary – which has already engaged more than half of UK Primary Schools (over 11,000 primary schools). Commissioned and produced by BBC Learning and delivered in conjunction with the BBC Performing Groups, the initiative aims to inspire a generation of children to get creative with classical music by using a selection of ten pieces of music as a spring-board for creativity, as well as a range of free online Key Stage 3/3rd Level music resources, UK-wide events and close collaboration with music and arts organisations.

Once students have seen the film, schools can access online resources to enable students to develop creative responses inspired by the music – either through dance, animation, performance poetry, composition or digital art. Schools will be able to attend live performances of the Ten Pieces across the country throughout the year.

Ten Pieces Ambassadors will continue to work with the project across the country – including Ten Pieces secondary soloists Nicola Benedetti and Alison Balsom, as well as jazz pianist Julian Joseph, baritone Roderick Williams, singer and BBC Radio 6 Music presenter Cerys Matthews, harpist Catrin Finch, and BBC Radio 3 presenter Suzy Klein. New Ambassadors joining the project for secondary schools will include cellist Julian Lloyd Webber, 19 year old Co-Principal Trombonist of the London Symphony Orchestra and former BBC Young Musician Peter Moore, electronic band Clean Bandit, and musician, producer and composer Nitin Sawhney.

Ten Pieces is delivered on the ground through an existing network of more than 250 music hubs, music education services and arts organisations that are already involved with Ten Pieces. These organisations will continue to support the initiative at a local level, extending their activities to secondary schools.

From Monday 28 September – Saturday 10 October, BBC Radio 3 presents a special Ten Pieces season. Across two weeks, each of the Ten Pieces will be played on Breakfast and a selection of BBC performing group performances of the works will be broadcast in full on Afternoon on 3 including Gabriel Prokofiev’s Concerto for Turntables and Orchestra and Anna Clyne’s Night Ferry.  On the station’s drive time programme In Tune, Ten Pieces ambassador Nicola Benedetti presents ‘Ten Facts, Ten Pieces’– a special daily feature detailing ten entertaining and informative facts about each of the works (28 September-9 October & available for download). Then, on Friday 2 October, the programme is live from the Thomas Tallis secondary school in Greenwich with presenter Suzy Klein and special guests including Ten Pieces composer Gabriel Prokofiev, DJ Switch, Ten Pieces ambassador Roderick Williams, and the BBC Concert Orchestra. Elsewhere, CD Review‘s ‘Building a Library’ feature surveys two of the Ten Pieces – Verdi’s Requiem (3 October) and Haydn’s Trumpet Concerto (10 October) – and on Essential Classics presenters Rob Cowan and Sarah Walker offer their recommendations of works related to the Ten Pieces.  Also on Essential Classics, Ten Pieces Ambassador Nitin Sawhney chooses his favourite pieces of classical music (28 September-2 October).

BBC Radio 2 also marks Ten Pieces Secondary with a Friday Night is Music Night special themed around the ten works (Friday 9 October) and Ten Pieces ambassador Suzy Klein will join Radio 2’s Ken Bruce every morning across the two week season to introduce each piece to the Radio 2 audience ( starting Monday 28th September)

Tony Hall, Director-General, BBC, said: ‘I’m so proud of this campaign, the biggest commitment the BBC has ever made to music education in our country.’


Ten Pieces Presenter and Ambassador quotes:

Clara Amfo: I’m so very happy to be involved with BBC Ten Pieces – it’s such an inspiring project, and a great way of encouraging this generation of children to become creative by using classical music as a starting point. In the film, I present Gabriel Prokofiev’s Concerto for Turntables and Orchestra which really shows that orchestral music is very much alive, still evolving and something that young people can definitely enjoy.’

Vikki Stone: I grew up with classical music in my bones, so I am thrilled to part of this wonderful project. It’s important to keep the spirit of classical music alive, as without its influence, we’d have none of the modern music we listen to today.’ 

Christopher Eccleston: ‘I’m delighted to be involved and to be riding with Wagner and his Valkyries is very thrilling.’

Nicola Benedetti: ‘I see first-hand on a regular basis the powerful impact music has on children. It is vital that it forms part of a child’s education and Ten Pieces Primary was a brilliant initiative which helped to ensure the potential of every primary school child having access to classical music. Ten Pieces Secondary offers a route in to the genre for 11-18 year olds and I am thrilled to continue to be a part of it. The Lark Ascending is such an evocative piece and one of the most loved in the repertoire making it an ideal choice and introduction.’  



Ten Pieces Primary resources and DVDs will continue to be available to primary schools throughout 2015/16 and schools are encouraged to continue their involvement. As Ten Pieces moves into its new Secondary phase, see the impact it’s had in Primary schools in this short film –

BBC Learning plays a central part in meeting the BBC’s purpose of promoting education and learning. Utilising the power of the BBC’s big brands and key talent, the department puts learning right at the heart of the BBC and provides a variety of resources and learning opportunities for children, teachers, parents and adult learners. Working with partners and in local communities, BBC Learning aims to stimulate interests and encourage engagement through a variety of campaigns across all BBC genres and platforms.

BBC Performing Groups – The BBC’s performing groups each play a unique role in British cultural life. Based in Cardiff, Glasgow, London and Salford, the BBC National Orchestra & Chorus of Wales, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra & Chorus, BBC Concert Orchestra, BBC Singers and the BBC Philharmonic, reach an audience of millions with their wide-ranging and distinctive programming. The BBC Symphony Chorus and BBC National Orchestra of Wales Chorus are two of the UK’s most distinctive amateur choirs, made up of over 250 dedicated volunteers.

Performing with the world’s leading conductors and soloists, the BBC performing groups give around 400 concerts a year in over 60 locations across the UK as well as touring worldwide. In the last 12 months the groups have been to Japan, India, the Middle East and much of mainland Europe. They provide around 600 hours of distinctive music-making for BBC Radio, have given more than 60 world premiere performances in the last year, and organise more than 100 learning and outreach projects across the country, bringing music to tens of thousands of people of all ages across the UK.

BBC Radio 3 broadcasts distinctive classical music and wider arts programming in three dimensions, through radio, live events and context. As the home of classical music, Radio 3 features more live classical music programming than any other and is the home of the BBC Proms, broadcasting every Prom live and over 600 complete concerts a year.

The station is the most significant commissioner of new musical works in the country and is committed to supporting new talent, from composers to writers and new young performers, through schemes such as New Generation Artists and New Generation Thinkers.

BBC Music is the corporation’s strongest commitment to music in 30 years – comprising an ambitious wave of new programmes, innovative partnerships and ground-breaking music initiatives. This is designed to strengthen the BBC’s place as a world leader in music broadcasting and commissioning, and enhance the UK’s position as a global trailblazer in music creation and performance. Led by Director Bob Shennan, BBC Music officially launched in October 2014 with the extraordinary reworking of God Only Knows featuring 27 artists.  More music is broadcast on primetime BBC One with regular musical performances on The One Show. This December sees the second BBC Music Awards on BBC One, Radio 1 and Radio 2. The classical music initiative ‘Ten Pieces’ engaged nearly half the primary schools in the UK, with the project now being extended to secondary schools, with a new selection of music for students and teachers to explore.

The inaugural BBC Music Day in June was a nationwide celebration of music, aiming to bring people together across generations and communities through their love of music. is now the established home for both BBC Music Playlister and exclusive programming.  Recent iPlayer commissions include Music Box with Guy Garvey and Amy Winehouse In Her Own Words.  And the most talented new artists are given a platform via BBC Music’s 17 emerging talent schemes – from BBC Young Musician to the BBC Young Folk Award and BBC Introducing.

Reducing opportunities for our talented young people to study music at KS4

Many of you will be aware of the decision to make the Ebac compulsory for pupils in maintained state schools. Did you know that the Ebac doesn’t include the Arts? Did you know that Schools who refuse to conform cannot be graded as Outstanding…..meaning that Headteachers will have to conform (although some are indicating that they will not).

Encore Enterprises is a non-political organisation, but we are greatly concerned that the compulsory Ebac will severely limit the opportunity for our young musicians to be able to study music at GCSE/BTec Level – particularly if they wish to study two arts options. This goes against the National Plan for Music Education which is a key policy by the DfE and to which Herefordshire Music Service and our partner schools and other organisations continue to deliver very successfully throughout the county. Sadly, despite significant research (which I could spend all day quoting!) those making the decisions have not yet grasped the proven educational benefits that music brings and continue to treat it as a minority subject for the few at KS4. In my view they are failing to consider individual pupils who might be interested and/or talented in the arts and are unfairly limiting their KS4 options.

Cliff Woollard

MD Encore Enterprises

Head of Herefordshire Music Service

26 June 2015


Below is a report by Hans van Mourik Broekman in the Times Education Supplement (TES) 22nd June 2015 which you might be interested to read

‘The compulsory Ebac is a question of conscience’

The recent government announcement that all pupils will be expected to enter and sit GCSE subjects for the English Baccalaureate (Ebac) has created a crisis of conscience among headteachers.

Details of the policy are, as usual, to be revealed later. The government has grudgingly conceded that a very small minority of pupils will not be expected to sit five GCSE examinations including English, maths, history or geography science and a foreign language.

Currently, about 39 per cent of pupils in the country are entered for this combination of qualifications, and approximately 24 per cent passed all five. Most schools are already entering pupils whom they believe to have a good chance of passing the subjects for the Ebac. The mandatory expansion of the Ebac curriculum to include nearly all pupils at age 16 therefore has the potential to entrap thousands of pupils in a curriculum which suits neither their interests, nor their talents, nor their needs.

The threat to downgrade schools who do not obey this edict imposes a painful but – from a government’s point of view, one assumes – highly effective Hobsonian choice for all headteachers.

Previous reforms of league tables and the Ofsted framework could be defended to pupils and parents in terms of a necessary pursuit of higher standards for all in core skills. They could also be argued to be preparation for basic skills without which one could not take a next step in education or life. There was particular focus on English and maths, leaving much space in the curriculum for other subjects and pursuits. This space compensated for the fact that more than 40 per cent of pupils nationally do not pass English and maths at GCSE.

The compulsory Ebac reform essentially creates one curriculum for all the 14-16 year olds in the country and leaves very little room to match curriculum with pupils’ needs, interests and future plans. As heads we know a substantial percentage of our pupils need a curriculum other than the one being imposed. We can see the effects of making a pupil follow a course of study which is not appropriate for them – in short, alienation, apathy, and failure.

Because every curriculum is by nature a choice which precludes other choices, the mandatory nature of the policy and the extent to which it will dominate available options for pupils will deliver a blow to plans to improve technical and vocational education and will put a further nail into the coffin of arts education.

The policy has the unintended effect of downgrading and trivializing the aspirations and value of at least half the population by not providing high quality appropriate options for them. This policy says that the child determined to become a plumber must sit examinations in not two but five of the same subjects and qualifications as the child determined to go to Oxbridge. The policy therefore removes the room which schools should be given to differentiate for the aptitudes and interests of all their pupils.

Our school received a letter from school minster Nick Gibb MP praising our Ebac performance and we are also working hard toward satisfying the demands of Ofsted as a school rated good with outstanding features in pursuit of an outstanding rating. This new policy will crystalize in the minds of many heads of non-selective state schools like ours that they may now have to make a choice to either follow their conscience and their duty of care to pupils, or follow the precepts of Ofsted and impose a curriculum which their pupils can neither access nor succeed in.

Our Year 9 students are currently reading To Kill a Mocking Bird together. I do not think they have reached the immortal chapter in which Atticus Finch instructs the members of the jury to “do their duty”. But the headteachers of England appear to have been brought to the point where they will have to examine their conscience as to whether it allows them to impose on their pupils a curriculum which they know is inappropriate for them. The time is approaching for us to do our duty.

Read more on the TES website

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