At the Festival we aim to embed our work into the cultural landscape of our local community in Hertfordshire with particular responsibility for musical outreach and enrichment to children, young people and the elderly. Our aim is to musically engage, inspire and enable them through a programme of educational concerts, workshops and other events and opportunities.

We offer free tickets to pupils from local primary schools attend educational concerts, performed by young musicians from the Purcell School. Schools are also offered pre-concert workshops so that the children can become familiar with the music and instruments involved and do other cross-curricular projects. We have a concert for the whole family with a programme based around the theme of the Festival with lots of audience interaction and participation, masterclasses given by the professionals to aspiring chamber musicians and a ‘Young Musicians’ Platform’ where young, talented chamber ensembles from Hertfordshire can perform as part of the Festival in collaboration with the Hertfordshire Music Service.

Music has a powerful physical, emotional and social benefit on all our lives. It’s now accepted theory that involvement in music as a child enhances brain function and structure, improving language development, brain connectivity and spatial intelligence, enabling them to do better in subjects like languages, reading and maths. It also improves co-ordination and self-discipline as well as co-operation and reasoning. By offering more opportunities to become involved in music-making we inspire and encourage our children and young people to aspire to greater things, all of which require collaboration and team-work with others, thus developing personal and social skills alongside musical ones.

However, involvement in music-making is often an expensive luxury, well beyond the financial means of many families living in and around Hatfield and other local Hertfordshire towns. The trustees of Hatfield House Chamber Music Festival believe in access to music and the arts for all and are therefore delighted to be developing this project. If you are interested in supporting our work with children and young people through the Festival, please contact us via jill@hatfieldhousemusicfestival.org.uk.

As we look ahead to the Festival’s tenth anniversary year in 2021, we hope to build on our experiences from this year and extend our Education and Outreach Programme to offer even more opportunities for children and young people to become involved. This will include concerts, masterclasses, workshops, performance opportunities and mentoring both during the Festival and we hope, at other times in the year.

Poems from Year 6 at Countess Anne Church of England Primary

Teach me the Language of Lion – by Matthew, Marcel and Dawid

Teach me the language of lion, that enormous stare,

An aggressive growl and a wide-mouthed prowl.

Teach me how to hunt

The prey that I know, it only takes a twitch,

A pounce and a rip and that’s everything I wish.

Teach me that roar

That marks my territory and my place as king.

Show me your hideaway places that no-one knows.

Don’t teach me tiger

Because I am strong and you are weak.

So don’t you dare challenge me!

 

Teach me the way of the Elephant – by Gloria and Harvey

Teach me the way of the Elephant,

The big stomps shake the fruit off the trees,

The gentle tail swishes in the wind,

The soft trunk sucks up water.

Teach me how to swat flies with my tail,

Teach me how to spray myself with water.

I make a loud noise with my trunk to scare people away.

People try to cut my tusks but I run away in time.

Don’t teach me to be a mouse,

They are so small and they make me run,

They squeak – none of that!

Teach me the Elephant way.

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