Sharing Creativity: Orchestras and Communities

Orchestras Live believes orchestras are for everyone. We believe live orchestral music has the power to inspire people for a lifetime. We create environments where orchestral music can thrive and work to ensure communities across the country have access to world-class orchestral experiences.

We believe that audiences and participants should have a voice in a production, it’s at the heart of what we do – our “with” not “for” approach. 

We’ve just been shortlisted for the RPS (Royal Philharmonic Society) Music Award for just that – nominated in the Audiences and Engagement category for our flagship projects, Classically Yours. The annual RPS Music Awards, presented in association with BBC Radio 3, are the highest recognition for live classical music in the UK. The Audiences and Engagement category recognises outstanding initiatives by organisations or individuals who engage new and existing audiences with classical music.

Classically Yours set out to engage new audiences by addressing the inequalities of opportunity to access high quality live orchestral music in the East Riding of Yorkshire, transforming beliefs in isolated coastal and rural communities that culture happens elsewhere.  

“Working together to achieve more” is the school motto of Withernsea High School, part of the community where the Camerata team worked in Classically Yours. Local visionaries live out that motto every day; particularly challenging in diverse and underserved communities. Projects like this are some of the most important work we do, inspiring us all to think differently about the social impact we can make, and how we might support & collaborate with other communities such as Withernsea in future.”      

Bob Riley, Chief Executive, Manchester Camerata, a Classically Yours partner

Adopting a philosophy where participants are central to all project decisions has changed the attitude of orchestral management and musicians, and empowered audiences. We’ve shown how the input of people into the artistic process can make the work even more relevant to those communities.  

I was very lucky to conduct the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, which not many 16 year olds get to do, or anybody gets to do frankly…  it’s been great to see all the people in my group work as a team to create such an amazing end result.  Sound Around project participant.

We apply the same principles to every project we co-produce.

  • Placing people at the heart of an orchestral project: to act as producers of a live orchestral event with significant role in the project design
  • Creating an experience that is relevant to, and informed by participants so that experience is impactful and brings positive attitudinal change amongst audiences
  • Enabling people to gain industry skills, experience and accreditation through working alongside professionals for their long term musical engagement
  • Informing and influencing promoters in the way that live orchestral music is presented for communities
  • Developing a model of work that can help sustain relationships between promoters, orchestras, music education hubs and audiences, so live orchestral music can thrive

We’re passionate about sharing the amazing world of orchestral music with as many people as possible, and want to create a legacy of commitment, dispel misconceptions and bring enthusiasm for live classical orchestral music.


Read more about us here.. 

About Us

First Time Live

Classically Yours project

Our 2018 RPS Music Award shortlist nomination news

Sound Around project

Partnership Manager Jan Ford’s Creative People & Places blog on the subject.