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Latest news and updates

New Opportunities to join our Ensembles and Activities from September 2017

Hackney Music Service offers a range of musical opportunities within its ensembles and choirs during term time, and we would like to encourage and welcome new members from September 2017! Whether you love to sing with a group, play bass, trumpet or sax, we have something for you and a chance to work with other likeminded young people. For more information see an outline of our opportunities below and on our ensembles page here.

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Join the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain 2018

If you are aged 13–18, playing (or composing) at Grade 8 distinction level or equivalent, and are totally committed to music… The world’s greatest orchestra of teenagers needs you.  Be part of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain in 2018 and breakthrough to the next level of orchestral brilliance, perform the most challenging music with the world’s greatest conductors and inspire other teenagers through NYO Inspire. Auditions are FREE and you will receive feedback. Bursaries are available to cover travel to and from the audition as well as your place in the orchestra. Auditions are friendly, positive, and great learning experiences. Find out more


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Hackney Youth Orchestras Trust – Summer Music School

Hackney Youth Orchestras Trust will be running a Summer Music School this year at Gainsborough School, Hackney Wick from Tuesday 25th to Thursday 27th July. The project is aimed at children and young people already learning an instrument, from 8 to 13 years and up to grade 5 standard. Students will have the chance to take part in group music making sessions, sing in a choir and participate in a concert performance at the end of the project.

Fees are £60 for the three days, with a concessionary rate of £10 – £30 available for families on a low income.

Apply online at

Email enquiries to 

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Hackney Community Orchestra (HCO) is a newly-established group run in partnership with The Bridge Academy and Hackney Music Service. HCO is open to players (particularly adults and those returning to ensemble music making), of any instrument at any level of expertise. Music reading is not essential. We aim to bring people together to create a unique ensemble for Hackney, playing all kinds of music, from jazz to pop and classical to folk.

We have been meeting on Thursdays from 18.30 – 20.00 at The Bridge Academy, Laburnum Street, London E2 8BA.  We are now looking at how best to secure the future stability of the group and to recruiting new members.

The purpose of the survey is to help us raise awareness of the group and to make decisions about its future organisation – please complete the survey here
The survey should be completed by Monday 1st May.  
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Hackney Schools Music and Dance Festival – 20th Anniversary!

It is hard to believe that the schools singing festival has been running since 1997, but it has! It was established to support primary teachers (specialists and non-specialists alike) in delivering curriculum music through the use of accessible and inclusive resources in the form of a song bank, and a platform to participate in the joy of massed singing alongside other Hackney schools. Over the last 20 years, the festival has grown from three schools participating in one singing event, to a whopping 69 schools taking part in a fortnight of singing, instrumental, dance and partnership day events. So there is much to celebrate!

To mark the 20th Anniversary of the Schools Music and Dance Festival, in addition to the songs performed on the day, at this year’s festival, we are providing a songbook with further bonus tracks for use across your school; in all there will be 20 songs celebrating 20 years, many of which have been suggested and put forward by our primary teachers as school favourites!

In addition to the established events, in consultation with the Early Years team, we are introducing a new EYFS singing festival, which will be led by, music lead and nursery teacher at Kingsmead School, Ben De Sausmarez. Ben has been a conductor of the Infant Festival supporting Yvonne Packer for some years and we are delighted that he has agreed to lead this new EYFS event. This completes the suite of singing events from nursery through to secondary school singing.

As this is the 20th Anniversary, we will also take this opportunity to celebrate our various partnerships with local and regional partners with a festival launch event at the Barbican Centre on 26th June – further details and how to obtain tickets for this event will follow shortly. The main festival will follow at the wonderful Round Chapel in Lower Clapton from 29th June to 7th July 2017.

This will be a special year of festival events with invited guest conductors and performers. For Hackney Schools who would like to participate, you can email who will provide you with instructions on how to take part, and a festival registration form.

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Trinity Laban – Beyond the Dots Summer School Bursaries Announced

Following a successful pilot year, Trinity Laban is delighted to announce bookings are now open for the return of Beyond the Dots, a Summer School for young musicians aged 11-19 years. Bursary support for eligible young people to attend at the subsidised price of just £70 (normal price £210) is now available. 

Beyond the Dots is a mixed ability 3-day holiday course supporting young musicians aged 11 – 19 to develop musical skills and creativity. Trinity  welcome young instrumentalists who have been playing for 3+ years with bursaries available on a first come, first served basis to applicants who are able to evidence eligibility for free school meals or whose parents/ guardians /carers are in receipt of means tested benefits (income support, job seekers allowance).

Trinity recognise that, for those on low incomes, £70 can be difficult to find, and they therefore welcome the support of any school or Music Hub who feels able to further subsidise a place for a young musician from their area/school. Please email: if you would like to discuss this.

Further information about the summer school, and standard booking can be found here

To apply for a bursary place for Beyond the Dots please email: with:

·         Participant’s name, age, instrument(s)

·         A brief (2-3 sentence) outline of why they would like to take up this opportunity

·         Evidence of free school meal eligibility or benefits (scan or PDF)

·         Which bursary option they would like to take up: £70 (without taster lesson) or £80 (with a 30 minute one-to-one taster lesson)

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