Wiltshire Music Centre consultancy project

Wiltshire Music Centre Creative Learning Programme

Briefing Paper for consultancy project

Background Information

Wiltshire Music Centre (WMC) – an Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisation – was founded 15 years ago by a group of visionary local people, who realised that there was a serious need for top quality performance and rehearsal facilities in the area.  Since then, the Centre has built an enviable reputation as a 300 seat professional concert hall of exceptional quality rooted in community participation and involvement.   From the start, the Centre has been defined by the willingness and drive to make the impossible possible.

We are unusual in that we have successfully sewn together four equally important, ambitious strands through the creation of the Centre:

  • First class acoustics within our intimate auditorium which enables active listening and firmly places us as a regular ‘must do’ for people across the region
  • A fresh perspective on nurturing talent, providing exceptional experiences and opportunities for performance and participation by international musicians and those starting out in their careers
  • An unrivalled professional environment for young people to grow in their music making
  • Carefully selected and nurtured partnerships, taking music into the community through a wide reaching programme of musical learning opportunities for school children, those with special educational needs and the wider community

Our architect designed, purpose-built 300-seat concert hall is known throughout the UK for the outstanding quality of its concert performances across classical, folk, jazz and world music.

The Centre is regularly praised for its exceptional acoustic and atmosphere which attracts international performers such as violinist Nicola Benedetti, jazz singer Stacey Kent, guitarist John Williams, pianist Steven Osborne, the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and jazz legend Courtney Pine.

The Centre also provides a permanent home for a range of local orchestras, choirs and other music groups and works extensively with local schools.  Over 800 local young musicians rehearse here weekly, and regularly perform to packed, receptive audiences.  Our facilities include practice and teaching spaces, digital labs for composition and listening, and instrument storage.

Project Overview

WMC is looking to appoint an independent consultant to deliver a piece of strategic work on how we develop our creative learning programme across the formal and informal music education sectors. It will include the following:

  • an assessment of WMC’s creative learning programme within the context of the overall artistic programme
  • an action plan for developing the programme over the next 3 years
  • an assessment of the resources required over this period within the context of the current resources invested in this area of work and other activities at the Centre
  • a funding strategy for delivering the programme

Key Tasks:

Review existing provision and partners:

  • WMC work – Small Schools festival; Special Schools festival; Wider Opportunities school workshops; Music & Science Festival; OAE residency project; Zone Club; Noye’sFludde/Olympic projects
  • Wiltshire Music Service & Hub
  • Local eg Wiltshire Youth Arts Partnership, schools
  • formal and non-formal music education partners
  • regional (South West Music School)

WMC Creative Learning Programme – research:

  • aims and objectives of the programme
  • how should the programme relate to and support the artistic programme?
  • Given the very wide number of possible phases, sectors and settings)  in which the Wiltshire Music Centre could work, (including, for example, FE/HE, Youth Justice, Early Years etc), where could we make the most distinctive contribution?
  • identify key opportunities to develop including digital engagement, audience development and youth programming

Output required – 3-Year Action Plan (pilot Year 1)

  • project road map with project ideas – eg
    • creative learning Ensemble-in-residence
    • Saturday Music School
    • ‘Music Leader’ training programme
    • Young Artist Programme (resident composer, artist & quartet)
    • professional development (CPD) opportunities for local music teachers
    • young promoters scheme/ youth audience development
    • Review organisational structure for creative learning team:
      • Recommended structure
      • job description(s)
      • Identify potential new partners
      • Develop funding strategy

We would also wish to have an interim meeting with the consultant to reflect on emerging issues and opportunities.

We envisage that this consultancy project will require 10 days of work and hope that it will be completed by the end of January 2014. If you are interested in applying for this please send a CV and covering letter outlining your proposals and costings for meeting the brief to James Slater, Artistic Director, Wiltshire Music Centre, Ashley Rd, Bradford on Avon, BA15 1DZ or email to info@wiltshiremusic.org.uk by 5pm on Friday 13th December.

An information pack of background material is available – please call 01225 860110.

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