Music for Youth Festival comes to Harrogate School

St Aidan's team at the 2014 Music for Youth regional festival. (S)

St Aidan's team at the 2014 Music for Youth regional festival. (S)

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North Yorkshire’s regional Music for Youth Festival will be held at St Aidan’s CE High School this month.

Nearly 400 musicians from 24 music ensembles will perform on March 14 in the festival, sponsored by the Royal Schools of Music exam board, the ABRSM, to showcase the best in local youth music.

Giving young musicians the opportunity to perform live and receive feedback from Music for Youth mentors is something we applaud loudly.

ABRSM chief executive Leslie East

Groups from Harrogate, but also Leeds, York, Teesside, and Richmond will perform for each other and two music mentors from Music for Youth, who will give advice and feedback.

And from those performing on the day, in anything from folk, world, and roots music, to western classical and contemporary jazz, some may be invited to perform at the national festival in Birmingham in the summer.

The festival’s chief executive Judith Webster said: “We are pleased to launch our 2015 regional festival series, and look forward to celebrating the range and quality of music-making currently taking place both inside and outside of schools across the UK.

“Supporters of participating musicians are invited to come along and get involved with their local regional festival so they can hear the unique mix of music being performed and see for themselves the great work happening in music education today.”

Since 1970 Music for Youth, the national youth music organisation, has given free performance opportunities for young people through nationwide festivals and concerts.

The festival series, taking place between February and April, gives a total of 40,000 young musicians from more than 1,500 music groups a chance to get their music heard in 50 festivals across the UK.

The series is open to groups of young musicians based in the UK, aged 21 and under, who are performing an eclectic range of music to any standard.

ABRSM chief executive Leslie East said: “ABRSM is extremely proud to sponsor Music for Youth’s regional festival series and the charity’s work.

“It’s a partnership that dates back to 1995 and, together, we want to inspire as many people as we can to participate and progress in music.

“Giving young musicians the opportunity to perform live and receive feedback from Music for Youth mentors is something we applaud loudly.”

Admission to the festival is free and it will take place in Constance Green Hall at St Aidan’s from 10am to 1pm, and then from 2pm to 5pm. Refreshments are available in the all day cafe.