From our very first meeting we knew we wanted Richard to bring his skills to our community ”
KIMBERWORTH PARK COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIP
As well as commercial work, Richard also works with schools, colleges and communities developing culture, capacities, and connections. He often (but by no means always) uses music as a starting point to engage children and adults in transformational projects, and goes on to build the creative confidence of individuals and their communities.
Typical educational/community projects begin with
- understanding and agreeing with client's the hope for transformation
- open invitations for participants to join and become involved
- group and individual facilitation and teaching
- exploring partnerships and strengthening relationships
- co-creating and running celebration events, festivals and inspirational activities
- the waymarking and affirming of simple paths for participants and others to use to create future collaborationswaymarking and affirming of simple paths for participants and others to use in ongoing community development
Richard offers facilitation for schools, colleges, community groups/associations, festivals, churches, charities and the public sector organisations. He works with staff, adults and children and is experienced in delivering festivals, hosting events, special projects, engaging hard to reach students, developing staff confidence in developing college & school culture, building links within communities and transformation in both ‘failing’ and successful schools.
Richard was invited to work with a troubled and "failing" school where the local authority music service had withdrawn due to the difficult school culture. Richard initially offered all students in the school opportunities for singing lessons, and these proved so popular, connecting with vulnerable and 'hard to reach students', that regular performance opportunities were established, allowing a culture of musical engagement to flourish that saw other instrumental teachers and ensemble leaders recruited and retained. Large numbers of students in the school become involved in music making and performance, and Richard facilitated a sustained programme of student led music performance that also blended with staff interests, visiting national and international guest artists who led workshops, and the creation of highly successful student community festivals.
In order to celebrate the European Day of Languages, Routes into Languages Cymru organised a family fun day to encourage young people’s engagement with language learning. They asked Richard to provide consultancy and facilitation for participating schools’ stage performances and the strengthening of parental/carer support for children learning new languages. Working with Richard, Routes into Languages Cymru provided multi-lingual singing lessons and warm ups for all the children participating and performing, and Richard hosted the staged event at the Wales Millennium Centre, creating a warm and familial environment for the young performers. The whole event closed with Richard leading an uplifting six language ‘Big Sing’ for families, their children and the public, which highlighted that language learning experiences can also be cultural adventures. As part of the project Richard recommended and organised for a short film to be made, capturing the energy, excitement and relaxed openness of the Routes into Languages Cymru family fun day.
A church situated in a comfortable English suburb recognised that it had within its congregation two distinct groups of people who, although worshipping together at services, didn’t really connect very much socially - the groups based around young families & also a large profile of older (perhaps more traditionally minded) members. Richard was invited to create an event bringing people together socially, and all were invited to a Saturday afternoon music session, where participants from 9 years old to 83 years shared experiences, talked, sang, played and performed together and then everyone informally performed to the whole community the following day as part of the weekly service. Running this event twice has led to the congregation forming an all age music group - a token of the growing intergenerational connections established and celebrated.
Kimberworth Park Community Partnership provide pioneering facilitation and community development on an urban housing estate in Yorkshire. Working with Richard the community group secured a Youth Music grant, which enabled them to offer to young people on the estate, through Richard, free, high quality singing lessons and performance opportunities and also provide cultural consultancy, arts provision, confidence building and staff development for nearby schools. The project led to many hundreds of young people becoming involved in music making, performing, taking part in workshops, visiting theatres, receiving visiting professional artists and participating in arts and community development, and, as a result of the project led by Richard, a partner school strengthen its work in this area by formally launching a Faculty of Culture, to further develop the area of arts, faith and community.
For an informal chat to Richard about the potential of your school college or community’s potential.
Richard is a wonderful teacher, facilitator and singer, with remarkable gifts of empathy and passion. He’s been key to the success of partnership projects with English Touring Opera and has great vision with a real eye for the potential of transformation. In our collaborations he was instrumental in creating a real buzz about the projects, and manages in a very short time to massively enhance creative and artistic life.
ENGLISH TOURING OPERA