All the latest news from SFS for the new year 2017......

You can also go to the SFS website or provider websites to find out about all the exciting music activities on offer for children and young people in Somerset this term.

South West Music School 

The SWMS Somerset Young Artists Development Programme - new initiative supported by Taunton Maids Bursary

We are on the lookout for 5 talented musicians – aged 18-25 (any genre).   The students will need to be self- starters and open minded about their career development, as well as being keen to perform.  We will be offering a bespoke one year package of mentoring, performance support, masterclasses and portfolio production. Auditions will be held in December 2016 and January 2017.  For further information, please contact:  Tracy Hill – t.hill@swms.org.uk

Workshop opportunities in Somerset

-Wind day in partnership with Wells Cathedral school- January 22nd 2017 at Wells Cathedral School
-Piano Masterclass – March 5th 2017 at Wellington School
-Rock and Pop masterclass day – April 2nd at Wellington School

If you know of any students that might be interested,  please email t.hill@swms.org.uk for further details and costs involved,  and to discuss the student’s ability.



are offering a host of Gamelan residencies all over Somerset. We will be revealing our new Gamelan video soon so keep your eyes open for this via our Facebook page. These workshops are a fantastic and accessible musical experience for all abilities.

The tracks for our popular project On the Record 7 are in the process of being written ready for recording around Easter time. There is still time to get involved with this project if you enjoy writing and recording music.

Contact action.track@btconnect.com to get On The Record 7. Or grab your copy of On The Record 6 featuring some of the best tracks to date.

The 2017 World Music Residency is just around the corner and Actiontrack are excited to announce they will be working with Afriquoi this April, running traditional African music workshops infused with electronics. The whole week of workshops will be celebrated with a public performance at Caryford Community Hall on the 28th April. 

Keep up to date with all these projects via our Facebook page and website. Or sign up to our newsletter via our website.

Somerset Music News

Somerset music had a busy lead up to Christmas with a packed Wells cathedral enjoying the musical talents from schools and the county youth orchestra the county youth choir and county show choir as well as a first public performance by the Cheddar valley boys choir. The county youth orchestra and county concert band also gave concerts in the week leading up to Christmas and the County youth choir and show choir were part of the BBC Somerset Christmas concert along with some of Somerset music’s brass teachers which was broadcast on the 23rd of December and on Christmas morning.

On a sadder note, Steve Smith a long standing member of Somerset music staff sadly passed away on the 1st of January after suffering from a brain tumour. He will be sadly missed across the music community in Somerset.



Hestercombe Centre for Young Musicians, a division of the Guildhall School is a wonderful resource in the South West.  Opened near Taunton 3 years ago, HCYM provides a positive, vibrant and nurturing atmopshere for all young  musicians (aged 15-18). Students develop their musical talent within a sustainable weekly Saturday programme with excellent learning and performance opportunities. 

There is no audition process and a visit with free workshops can be arranged any time for prospective students and parents/carers.

Read more here.

For further information please contact the Hestercombe CYM office: 01823 410110 or 07754 217993 or hcym@cym.org.uk.


Amazing CPD opportunity to increase your confidence and skills.

8th February 4-5.30pm, £10 per person

Taining for teachers, TA's, supply and volunteer staff at key stage 1&2, only 20 places (subsidised by SFS)

Venue: Hestercombe Centre for Young Musicians, TA2 8LQ

* Want to know how to access the fantastic singing resources available online and navigate around the website?

* Want to learn how to use Sing Up within your classroom and get your class singing regularly?

* Particularly suitable for those who lack confidence in leading singing themselves, but want to get their pupils singing more.

* Get started on repertoire to get you into the Spring/Easter season.

Experienced choir & singing leader Kate Lynch has been using Sing Up since it first appeared within the classroom and with choirs across Somerset. Come and learn how you can get your class (and school) singing, support your curriculum and music teaching, whilst getting some tips on the best songs available.

You will look at some of Kate’s favourite songs, spend some time exploring the resources available and also have a look at some seasonally chosen repertoire to get you started on Spring and Easter songs.

There is a special heavily subsidised rate to join Sing Up available through the hub.

Book now by calling 01373 812383, or email music@jackdaws.org or go to our website.

SingingWorx and OrchestraWest are thrilled to be joining forces with Heathfield school and local primary schools for two nights of concert on February 21st/22nd at Tacchi Morris.  

This exciting event, involving around 120 children, includes many well known orchestral pieces, folk songs and the Big Blue and Green Orchestral Machine, a fantastic, funny and thought provoking set of songs composed by Julian Breeze.

Tickets are on sale now. More info here.

Other news from around the County

The AllStars inclusive music project, run by Count Me In, is bringing live music sessions to the Jean Rees post-16 centre in Bridgwater this winter. Students will work together to develop new music and develop peer support skills. As the work progresses the group will be joined by students from Chilton Trinity School, which shares the same site. As with other AllStars sessions, groups of mixed abilities will create new music and explore the social benefits of playing together.

More information email jane-harwood@hotmail.com