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Education CV

I worked in education from 1984 until 2016 doing music workshops. Most of this time I was an artist working in various settings and not a teacher.  I was a secondary school class-music teacher in a very unusual and progressive school (PGCE music in education) for a short while, and I was teaching musical instruments privately, and working with dance – mainly contemporary but I did work frequently with the Birmingham Royal Ballet as well. By 1993 I was getting a lot of work as a performing musician so I decided to create a company – RowdyMusic which encompassed not only the education work but also my performing and song-writing career – Songstuff. 

This education work is now very infrequent as I am more in demand and more focused on my performing and recording work. I am also sorry to say that creativity in education settings in the UK has been severely undermined in recent years. I find that the vast majority of education settings are now so restrictive and prescriptive for artists to work in and, sadly, for children to be learning in, that I decided to withdraw from almost all education work apart from Mothify and an occasional project with theVERYidea.

When times for learning stuff was better, much of my education work involved being a project-musician facilitating creativity for people in unusual settings, building sound/visual environments and making outdoor instruments. I also ran and was involved in music workshops and projects in all sorts of different venues and settings with people of ages and abilities. More recently I had been working a lot with very young children and their parents.

Sound Children logoI continue on and off to be a music consultant for Sound Children and Drums For Schools, who make musical instruments for children. I had sometimes run workshops, trained practitioners and  I advise on musical instruments, ideas and approaches, including filming, testing and improving instruments as well as helping to invent new ones. I have been to Bali to meet the makers of the instruments and I’ve worked with some children there too. I’ve travelled to Zambia and led some music workshops with orphans and other children using these instruments and my accordion. I’ve designed annA rydeR’s Early Years Music Cards and have even helped with design aspects of the Sound Children website including the cartoon icons…

Other aspects of my work as an education-musician included working with dancers, working with people who have special needs or disabilities and working on family projects.

More recently I have formed TheVERYidea with three other professional artists Louise Bardgett, Matt Shaw and Barbara Jones. We have worked together since 2005 and decided to make this artist collective together…

I see music and sound-making as an integral part of life and much of the work I did encouraged music and sound happening alongside and in tandem with anything else from visual art to history, from story-telling to identifying wildlife…

The project I am still involved with is a wildlife-related one called Mothify which I started with my friend Sue Hastings. This is detailed on my Mothify blog. Even though it focuses on moths in the UK, we use all sorts of ways to involve people of all ages including sound, art, print, sculpture, building, typewriters, songs – anything. This has run since 2014 and we’ve involved over 250 people so far.

Have a look at the gallery below to get a feel of the type of things I’ve been invovled with over the years…



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