How does financial support enable families to continue musical education?
Many young people with a desire to learn a musical instrument cannot afford the costs associated with music education. Whether it’s buying or renting an instrument or paying for tuition, many families struggle to find the money needed to help young people pursue their passion for music.
For more than half of the young people who learn on the Make Music: Young People, the three bursaries (David Goldman Award, Netherton Park Bursary, and the Music and Dance Scheme from DfE) provide crucial support for starting or continuing their music education.
Mum of three Matti Imariaghbe wants every child to be able to access music education, including her own children, Isaiah, Elianna, and Etania. Matti, a local choir leader, grew up surrounded by music and wanted her children to also enjoy the benefits of music making. At school, her three children learnt about the foundations of music, but they were eager to learn an instrument.
It seemed out of reach for Matti’s family until she discovered how YMP can help remove the financial barriers to playing an instrument.
“It’s the best investment I could make in my children’s futures, because the programme is such high quality, and they absolutely love it,” she says.
Applying for a bursary is not complicated
All three of Matti’s children study on the Step-Up programme with the support of a bursary: Isaiah plays the trombone, Elianna the clarinet and Etania the euphonium.
“My bursaries are means-tested and reduce the overall fee, which I ordinarily couldn’t afford,” she says. “I spread the remaining cost throughout the year, which makes it affordable.”
Sage Gateshead is committed to working with all children and young people, whatever their circumstances.
“The bursary scheme is a great way to support people who otherwise wouldn’t be able to afford it, she says. “Completing the application is really easy, and the Make Music team support you every step of the way.”
Learning music can increase confidence in young people
Matti says her children see themselves as professional musicians in the making and they feel really settled in their classes at Sage Gateshead. Exploring new skills with patient tutors instilled self-belief, and Isaiah, Elianna, and Etania became comfortable sharing what they learned.
“It’s great to see them teach other children what they learn and speak confidently in musical terms.”
Make Music students perform to audiences in Sage Gateshead and at other events across the region.
“My favourite thing is watching them play in an orchestra, seeing how their timekeeping and teamwork have improved,” Matti says.
In the beginning, Elianna was shy and lacked confidence to perform in front of others. Eventually, with practice and encouragement, she could stand on stage and perform.
“Elianna’s confidence has blossomed so much from the programme,” says Matti. “She even played a solo piece to an audience; I could tell she was so proud of herself.”
Etania aspires to be a music teacher in the future. However, even if Matti’s children don’t choose music as a career, she knows the skills and knowledge they’ve learned on the programme will benefit them in whatever path they take.
“They have developed other qualities, like leadership and communication,” says Matti. “Beyond music, it’s opened their world up to new things.”