We were the first orchestra to establish a year-round programme dedicated to making music in schools, hospitals and communities. That programme, Meet the Music, currently spends over 170 days in the community every year making music with a wide range of people, now reaching over 14,000. We take the same values and approach of moving and surprising, with the same ethos of quality, delivered by every musician in our Orchestra, to significantly greater numbers than our peers because we believe in the value and importance of this work and attach equal importance to it. We believe that we are unique among our peers in our approach to making music with all ages and stages in community settings.

Current Meet the Music projects include Wellbeing through Music in healthcare settings in a programme of uncommon breadth and quality. The very same outstanding musicians who create our highest quality concerts deliver performances, often at patients’ bedsides, and end of term projects for young children in major London teaching hospitals including Great Ormond Street. They also undertake regular visits to care homes in North London, often making music with Holocaust survivors or those suffering from dementia. Our plans for the next three years include creating a body of research around the effectiveness of these projects, going beyond the anecdotal and providing clinical evidence as to their effectiveness.

Our education projects, Growth through Music, see our musicians working with very young children (aged 3-7) in communities that are geographically or economically isolated, including rural Suffolk and Tower Hamlets. Working closely with schools and Music Education Hubs (the organisations that superseded Local Authority music education provision) we address a significant gap in provision for children at a crucial time in their academic and social development. We perform for young children and their families through our Crash Bang Wallop! concert series and projects with joint venture partners including ‘Paddington Bear’s First Concert’.

Read more about our Meet the Music projects on our Growth through Music and Wellbeing through Music pages.