EMI Music Sound Foundation

EMI Music Sound Foundation

EMI Music Sound Foundation is an independent music education charity, established in 1997 to celebrate the centenary of EMI Records and to improve young peoples' access to music education in the UK & Ireland.


News archive for 2013

EMI MSF Beneficiary Clara Lands in Luxembourg as Principal Trombone!

Posted on: 13 Aug 2013

EMI MSF beneficiary Clara Daly Donnellan set off for Luxembourg this year to perform with the European Union Youth Wind Orchestra and she has written in to tell the Foundation all about her experience:

“I didn’t know what to expect, but I was nervous and excited at the same time, especially since I knew I was the lower end of the age spectrum (16 – 30, I’m 17). I arrived in Luxembourg, where I got to meet the other players and then went to the conservatoire of Luxembourg to start rehearsals. We were playing a difficult programme, including Florent Schmitt’s “Dionesiaques” (apparently the Bible for wind band orchestration), and the first step towards having a competent ensemble to play this was to sort out who would be sitting where. The solution? Auditions! This was a daunting suggestion to all of us. We were to play in front of a panel of staff in one of the concert halls, and although the rest of the orchestra were not technically in there, they might as well have been. The doors were paper thin, and any time spent not playing was spent listening intently (usually with jaw dropped) to other player’s auditions. However this was the scariest part of the course and was soon over - we began rehearsing that night, with me as co-principal trombone! Our section was superb, consisting of 2 Spaniards, 1 Italian, 1 from the Netherlands and me, the Irish girl. They were all so kind to me and we gelled as a group incredibly quickly. First on the agenda were sectionals for a day and a half (rehearsals were from 10am till 9pm). Then we moved into full rehearsals and began working with our conductor, the highly regarded and experienced Jan Cober, from Holland. Under his assured hand we soon blossomed into a fantastic, exciting ensemble, and we played our first concert just 4 days after rehearsals had begun. After this, we moved to Kerkrade in Holland, the main town for the World Music Competition (“the world through wind music”). Here we got to meet many amazing musicians from all around the world, working closely with the Símon Bolivar Youth Wind Orchestra from Venezuela, who are one of the most highly regarded and exciting young wind bands in the world today. After a day of workshops with them, we came together as one huge band to play Awayday by Adam Gorb and Danzón II by Arturo Márquez in the concert for the World Music Competition. Our Venezuelan compatriots also played an astonishing programme, with all of the audience up on their feet dancing by the end of the concert. Our wind band played two more concerts alone, and then it was time to go home.

The opportunity to meet and play with other musicians from all over Europe in this incredible ensemble was one I will never forget. I know this sounds incredible cheesy, but I promise you, this is the way I truly felt about this amazing experience. I want to thank EMI for their support, which allowed me to purchase a world class instrument, so I could be part of a world class ensemble”.


EMI MSF Beneficiary Achieves Big Things in Moscow!

Posted on: 18 Jul 2013

Earlier this year, EMI MSF beneficiary Amber Emson took part in “Jugend Misizert” in Moscow and ended up receiving 3rd prize, an amazing achievement!!

“Jugend Musiziert” is Germany’s biggest youth music competition. It takes place annually, and each year there are thousands of competitors between 7 and 18 years old nationwide, presenting their musical skills. The process is similar to the BBC Young Musician of the Year in which there are 3 rounds, a local, a regional and a national one.

After having passed the first 2 rounds with a 1st prize in each of them, Amber was awarded a 3rd prize in the final national round of the competition in May 2013 in her age category playing violin.

Here is Amber just after she had won the 2nd round of the competition which took place early March this year in Moscow.


Smithills rolls out another high achiever!

Posted on: 17 Jul 2013

As we do with our beneficiaries, the EMI Music Sound Foundation likes to catch up with students from our Sponsored Schools. Here is a success story of a student from Smithills Schools, Ben Ellin and a little about what he has achieved.

Ben Ellin is a former pupil from Smithills School who is now 33 years of age and rising higher and higher in his chosen dual career of composer/conductor.

An example of what Ben has accomplished so far is shown in the below photograph which demonstrates Ben conducting the World famous Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in the Royal Festival Hall, London, on 29th June 2013. The piece he is conducting is Gustav Holst’s ‘Planet Suite’ (it is the centenary of the piece this year).

Ben was the first ever Smithills School Principal EEb Bass player of the Senior Brass Band (1992-1997), as well as the first ever Principal Clarinet of the Senior Concert Band at the same time (1992-1997). He went on to be the first ever Smithills member of the National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain (1994-1996) and then the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain (1996-1998).

Ben now conducts regularly in Los Angeles USA, St Petersburg Russia, Rome, London, Kent, Manchester (BBC Philharmonic Orchestra) and…Huddersfield! He got married last year and later this Autumn he will become a very proud father for the first time.

Needless to say, Smithills and of course Ben are very proud of what he has achieved and the fact that he still maintains visit to the school regularly speaks volumes about him.

Here is the picture of Ben in action!


Jazz Vehicle Counts a Professional Artist Amongst Them!

Posted on: 15 Jul 2013

As part of a new Miles Ahead youth participation and development programme, EMJAZZ (East Midlands Jazz CIC) is hosting international Jazz musician Zoe Rahman as an artist in residence with young people’s ensembles, one of which is Lincoln’s long-standing youth jazz ensemble, Jazz Vehicle who the EMI Music Sound Foundation has worked with on numerous occasions.

Jazz Vehicle bring a wealth of experience in developing young people through the medium of jazz music and expect that the residencies will extend the skills, creativity and ambitions of their participants by bringing them into contact with such respected musicians.

Described in The Observer as “a remarkable pianist by any standard”, Zoe Rahman has firmly established herself as one of the brightest stars on the contemporary jazz scene. A vibrant and highly individual pianist/composer, her style is deeply rooted in jazz yet it reflects her classical background, British/Bengali heritage and her very broad musical taste. Known for her powerful technique, wide-ranging imagination and exuberant performance, she has become a highly sought-after musician, working most recently with the likes of George Mraz, Courtney Pine and Jerry Dammers’ Spatial AKA Orchestra, winining in 2012, the 2012 MOBO award for Best Jazz Act. She shares her passion for music through teaching in a variety of contexts, inspiring musicians of all ages and abilities.

Zoe Rahman will work in collaboration with Jazz Vehicle for 18 months as part of the EMJAZZ Youth Music funded Miles Ahead participatory jazz programme.

The Miles Ahead programme provides opportunities for participation in both small and large ensembles for young people across the East Midlands, with activities in Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire and Northamptonshire. The programme, which runs from November 2012 until July 2014, will use jazz as the basis for teaching music and life skills to young people.

What a great opportunity for Jazz Vehicle!


Ralph Thoresby School Receives Four Awards from the EMI Music Sound Foundation!

Posted on: 09 Jul 2013

In March 2013, the EMI Music Sound Foundation awarded four students grants for music equipment at one of it’s sponsored schools, Ralph Thoresby School.

Each year the Foundation receives thousands of applications from music students across the country with requests of financial support towards their music studies and this year, Sam Boyes, Heather Brook, Nigel Matambo, and Faye Priestley were all successful with their applications and therefore received funding to support their studies in the following ways…

Sam and Nigel used the award to purchase Apple Macbook Pros. with Cubase software installed. This has enabled both Sam and Nigel to write and record their own music and produce high quality audio products. Furthermore, this will drastically help them as they continue to pursue music in the Sixth form and beyond.

Faye used her award to help towards the purchase of a brand new Clarinet. Faye is now preparing for her Grade 8 exam and for auditions for the Leeds Youth Orchestra, one of the top youth orchestras in the country. We wish her the best of luck with both of these challenges!

Heather used her award to purchase an iPad with accessories so that she could have a basic portable recording studio. This has assisted Heather with her song writing and allowed her to record any ideas that she may have whether at home, in a rehearsal situation, or waiting for a bus!

We are so pleased as a Foundation that we are able to help students with funding from one of our sponsored schools as it displays how music continues to improve within each area in the schools from orchestral instruments to music technology!

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