“If music be the food of love, play on . . .’’
(William Shakespeare: Twelfth Night)
Modern research has shown that music makes a valuable contribution to all ages and in many areas of health and well-being, as well as being a form of entertainment.
Our aim with this website is to present resources that can help make musicians aware of ways of working as a professional that does not rely on working within the ‘music industry’ and that can contribute to healthy and happy communities.
MUSIC AND SOCIAL INCLUSION: THE PROJECT
This project has brought together a number of partners from across Europe, some with life long learning and community development at their core and others with a specialism music and participation.
Together we planned a partnership programme that explored what we each thought of as the job Community Musician.
We have based our resources from observing each others practice through Sample Projects, and have reflected and reviewed each others work, compared it to our own and finally we have come up with a Quality Framework Checklist for aspiring Community Musicians to measure their own skills and effectiveness against.
Through sharing our projects we have learned from each other, and for some partners who are new to the concept of community music we have provided constructive feedback.
Through presenting the descriptions of projects, session plans and peer reviews we are demonstrating what we as a partnership have defined as best practice in action.
For the purposes of this project we have used the examination of Sample Projects to help illustrate what we mean by Best Practice (please see section on Quality Framework) within Musical Inclusion (please see section on Musical Inclusion) and what may be expected of someone who wants to work as a Community Musician (please see section What is a Community Musician).
The partnership comprises organistions with varying levels of experience of this type of work, and so the aims of including descriptions of the Sample Projects within this project are:
- To present a taste of an organisation’s ongoing work with music and people, at whatever level of development
- To use the opportunity for some action research in developing their practice
Sample projects are in the areas:
- Working in with old people in residential settings
- Community choirs/ensembles
- Folklore dance events
- Working with socially excluded groups
- Working with all abilities
Within each section you will find:
- Descriptions of the ongoing work and action research elements of the project
- An individual case study
- Peer reflections from practicing musicians from other partners
- Descriptions of similar projects from partners
If you are a musician seeking to develop your practice as you go through this section:
- Read the project descriptions
- Pick up some ideas
- Decide what is useful for you
- Apply your own reflection to the work described
- Think bout how to adapt the type of project to your own situation
If you are a potential commissioner of musical inclusion projects:
- see if any of the projects could be replicated in your setting
- know how to brief/evaluate the musicians who may work for you