Faith School in showcase concert at Liverpool Philharmonic Hall

Faith School rehearsal

Faith School rehearsal

A special showcase next week at the Liverpool Philharmonic Hall will feature the West Everton Children's Orchestra, playing alongside musicians of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra (RLPO), as the culmination of the pilot year of In Harmony.  The concert will take place next Friday, 19 March at 12.30pm.

In Harmony has been making music part of everyday life for 100 children and staff based at Faith Primary School - the primary school for the Jesuit parish of St Francis Xavier - and involving their families and the wider West Everton community.

Chaired by the world-renowned cellist, Julian Lloyd-Webber, In Harmony is inspired by the hugely successful Venezuelan project El Sistema which, in the 34 years since it was founded, has transformed the lives of over half-a-million young Venezuelans through the formation of children's orchestras.

The Liverpool daily music programme includes group instrumental tuition on violin, viola, cello and bass for all the children at Faith Primary School, who are aged 4-11 years.  In April last year, the very next day after their first instrumental lesson, children and staff came together to play music as the West Everton Children's Orchestra.

In Harmony Liverpool is attracting significant national attention from peer organisations, education and health bodies and the media.  Tom Service in The Guardian described it as 'an astonishing and inspiring experience… seeing it in action is the sort of experience that would make a music-educational evangelist of any politician.  The lessons of In Harmony need to be learned and integrated into the country's wider music provision, not simply seen in isolation.  If any Labour or Conservative politician wanted to show real commitment to education, to social cohesion and mobility, and to the belief that it's possible to transform the lives of people growing up in underprivileged areas, as well as to music, they would make In Harmony a part of as many children's lives as possible.'

Schools Minister, Diana Johnson MP, called In Harmony Liverpool '…one of the best things I've done as an MP' when visiting the debut performance of the West Everton Children's Orchestra last July.  BBC 1 North West will screen a 30-minute documentary about In Harmony Liverpool called Bute Street Symphony after 19 March - the date of the concert in the Philharmonic Hall.

Source: Jesuit Communications Office

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