outreach programme

A central aim of the Festival is to encourage the appreciation of music in the community and we have always had an active Outreach programme which includes concerts and master-classes for local schools. However the Festival Committee has decided to broaden the programme to take music into local schools throughout the school year, not just the week of the Festival.

Thanks to the generosity of our Benefactors, the Festival is now able to offer a wide ranging Outreach Programme. In June 2019 the Winchfield Festival provided a grant to Hampshire Music Services to fund musical workshops in every one of Hart’s nineteen Primary schools with the aim of ensuring that every child in Key Stage 2 has a fair chance of discovering an interest in music. We intend to maintain and expand this funding stream over the long term.

The Festival Outreach programme is making very good progress. The photo shows Luke Jones delivering the very first workshop to Elvetham Heath Primary school in September 2019, with children experiencing a ‘hands on’ workshop with steel drums.

As well as providing workshops for primary schools in Hart, the Winchfield Outreach programme is able to fund additional support to individual schools. This programme is called the David Kaye Award and in its first year it has provided classroom sets of instruments such as ukuleles, recorders and drums to four schools.   To cope with the COVID pandemic, Hampshire Music Service has managed to maintain the momentum of the Outreach programme by delivering workshops online. This has been a great achievement, but the team is looking forward to getting back to classroom workshops as soon as possible.

A second strand of the Outreach Programme is to provide a platform for Hampshire’s best Secondary School musical students to perform in St Mary’s church Winchfield. On Saturday 14th March 2020, just before lockdown changed everything, talented young musicians drawn from schools across Hampshire performed a highly successful concert in St Mary's church. The programme included works performed by a trio of harps, the Hampshire County Youth Orchestra String Quartet, solo violin and saxophone.  This strand of the Outreach Work has, sadly, been suspended this academic year.

Jill Larner, Head of Hampshire Music Service, said: 'The exciting partnership with The Winchfield Festival is now very well established and the outcomes for pupils have been quite extraordinary, especially taking into account the Covid challenges presented in recent times. Everyone involved in this wonderful Outreach programme has worked so hard to pull together and keep up the opportunities for the children and young people of Hart. As the song says, "The Show Must Go On" and the coverage and breadth of activities has continued to grow, with some great music-making even taking place online, when face to face sessions were restricted.

Two developments this year have been especially important as they bring a fantastic long-lasting legacy to the project. The support to purchase lots of new ukuleles and steel pans and the chance to offer a wide range of continuing professional development opportunities to primary music teachers across the district will ensure that pupils will have enhanced and additional access to musical learning for years to come. The many magical musical moments will not only extend pupils' learning but will also support their mental health and emotional wellbeing, provide an inclusive opportunity for all to participate, and give them self-confidence and joy - all so important at this time.

On behalf of the children of Hart, a huge ‘thank you’ from Hampshire County Council's Music Service, to the Benefactors and Winchfield Festival’s Education Outreach Team, for making all this possible.'