Fifteen young musicians aged 10 – 15 from In Harmony Liverpool performed at a concert in Derry – the UK City of Culture 2013.
The children performed in the city’s Millennium Forum Theatre for guests and dignitaries, along with St. Patrick’s School Choir (BBC Songs of Praise School Choir of the Year 2013) and musicians from Derry-Londonderry. They played some of the music that they performed in March this year at In Harmony Liverpool’s Fourth Birthday Concert at Liverpool Philharmonic Hall.
In Harmony is a national music and social programme inspired by Venezuela’s renowned El Sistema.
Since In Harmony Liverpool began in 2009, led by Liverpool Philharmonic and immediately establishing West Everton Children’s Orchestra, the programme has benefitted nearly 300 children and young people aged 18 months to 15 years and their families in West Everton.
Children are making outstanding progress in developing their musical ability as individuals and as an orchestra supported by Liverpool Philharmonic’s In Harmony team.
In Harmony Liverpool is also delivering significant benefits throughout the whole community, highlighting a visionary model for community development, improved wellbeing and attainment, achieving the best for children, staff, parents and the community.
In 2012, 81% of In Harmony Liverpool primary school leavers continued to learn their instrument on transition to secondary school, a remarkable achievement, and up from 7o% in 2011.
Michael Eakin, Chief Executive, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic said: “Liverpool Philharmonic would like to thank UNISON, Liverpool City Council and Derry-Londonderry Council for offering this opportunity to the children from In Harmony Liverpool to represent their City and their community in a concert in the UK Capital of Culture.
“It’s recognition of the children’s musical achievements and another great In Harmony experience for them to treasure.”
Cllr Jane Corbett, Liverpool City Council’s Cabinet member for Education and Children’s Services who addressed guests at the concert before introducing the In Harmony Liverpool children to the stage commented:
“For our children and staff at Faith Primary School in West Everton, to be by taught by musicians from Liverpool Philharmonic, for them to become our friends, and for Liverpool Philharmonic to become like a second home to our community is something very special.
“We’re all learning from each other, the educational attainment, health and well-being of the children is improving dramatically, and classical music is no longer a world that we are excluded fromâ¦ it’s now our world, we love being in it and we love having the opportunity to share it with others.”
Frank Hont, UNISON North West’s Regional Secretary added: “Community cohesion is part of UNISON’s campaigning work. We believe that the El-Sistema inspired In Harmony Liverpool programme is a great example of how communities can come together and promote inter-generational support.”