NYO news

we announce NYO Inspire Orchestra

NYO Inspire Orchestra to tour secondary schools enabling more young musicians than ever to have breakthrough orchestral experience of NYO, and give more teenagers the chance to hear the power of brilliantly-played live orchestral music

The National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain (NYO), the world’s greatest orchestra of teenagers, announces the creation of a new NYO Inspire Orchestra.

The first NYO Inspire Orchestra will come together in Manchester at the end of June for an immersive five-day residential rehearsal period under the leadership of dynamic conductor/composer Duncan Ward, NYO alum and assistant to Sir Simon Rattle, before a tour to secondary schools in the north-west of England between 2 and 6 July 2015. The talented and committed teenage musicians selected to take part will have the opportunity to significantly develop their skills and experience as well as build on NYO’s long tradition of inspiring other young people by taking orchestral music to communities where young people have had little or no chance to enjoy it.

The launch of the first NYO Inspire Orchestra is a key innovation in NYO’s bold new mission to harness the power of peer inspiration and enable many more teenage musicians and audiences of all backgrounds to experience orchestral music-making. 

Collaborating with national Music Education Hubs and other key organisations in the UK music education sector, through a programme called NYO Inspire, NYO is committing itself to helping to deliver the National Plan for Music Education, which highlighted the shortage of viable progression routes for committed young musicians. With NYO Inspire, the NYO is systematically putting to work its long-established expertise in nurturing the UK’s finest teenage musicians by expanding its work beyond the traditional three annual orchestral residencies and tours each year. 


NYO Inspire is structured as a mini-progression route for committed young musicians, with successful participation in an Inspire Day (a one-day workshop with NYO musicians and tutors) opening the possibility of an Inspire Ensemble (a three-day residency with NYO musicians and tutors). Now, for the first time, NYO is introducing a further level, the Inspire Orchestra.


NYO Inspire will target talented young musicians across the UK who have had the least opportunity to develop their skills and experience, with bursaries available to ensure that the programme, like the NYO itself, remains as inclusive as possible. 


Sarah Alexander, Chief Executive of National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain, says:


'Music provision in the UK is patchy and we at NYO see the results of this every year. Many brilliant teenage musicians struggle to gain a place in NYO not through lack of talent or commitment, but simply because they have had so little opportunity to develop their ensemble performance skills. NYO Inspire is targeted directly at these musicians. Employing the power of peer inspiration and leadership, NYO Inspire offers the highest quality orchestral playing opportunities to those committed teenage musicians who need them most. By forming NYO Inspire Orchestra as part of this, we are delighted to offer more teenagers than ever the chance to be involved.'


Richard J Hallam MBE, Chair of the Music Education Council, says: 


'The National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain has long been recognised as the pinnacle of artistic achievement for many of the UK’s teenage musicians. Through NYO Inspire the orchestra is creating a structured and inclusive programme that will enable so many more teenagers to benefit from the skills, expertise and inspiration, not just of the organisation, but of the teenagers already involved. The NYO Inspire programme will provide a much-needed progression route for many dedicated young players from every background and corner of the UK.'


Sir Mark Elder, NYO alumnus and world-renowned conductor, says:


'This plan by the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain is a real must! It shows that the organisation is not only in touch with the needs of young musicians, but has a solution. With this idea, over the years countless talented young people will have the potential to realize their musical dreams. Let's hope it gets off to a flying start!'


Each of the 164 brilliant teenage orchestral musicians of NYO will commit five days a year to deliver NYO Inspire directly to their teenage peers, which in turn will develop their own leadership and team skills. 


Generous early funding for NYO Inspire was provided by The Queen’s Trust, The John R Murray Charitable Trust and a legacy from Mansel Rowlands. This was quickly followed by a number of individual NYO supporters, Trusts and parents.   

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