Homepage > centre activities

WA
Danum Road, Doncaster. DN4 5HE
Tel: (01302) 734810 / 734811 Fax: (01302) 734815
E-mail: wamc@doncaster.gov.uk

 

 

THE WILLIAM APPLEBY MUSIC CENTRE

The William Appleby Music Centre is centrally funded and attendance is free of charge to pupils of Doncaster local authority schools. Others pay a small termly subscription. The work at the Centre forms an essential part of the instrumental training given to pupils, complementing the musical opportunities found in schools.

Currently, around 1,500 instrumentalists come to the Music Centre to participate in the weekly musical activities. The Centre's orchestras, bands and other groups offer both a musical experience and a social one for the children who take part, bringing together players from many schools and from different areas of the Metropolitan Borough.

MUSIC CENTRE BANDS, ORCHESTRAS AND OTHER GROUPS

A wide variety of musical activities is offered at the Music Centre. There are guitar, percussion and recorder groups, chamber music ensembles, theory classes, choirs, and a large number of carefully graded bands and orchestras.

The young pupils progress systematically through these bands and orchestras towards the Beechfield Youth Orchestra and the Doncaster Schools Symphonic Band, which offer their players experience of a extensive range of works from the standard repertoire.

SOCIAL SKILLS AND MUSICAL SKILLS

As well as providing training grounds for young musicians, the Music Centre's orchestras, bands and groups offer a framework for social contact among the young people involved. In senior orchestras and bands, this is reinforced by participation in musical events such as visits to public concerts in major cities, and holiday courses or concert tours in this country and abroad.

During these activities, friendships are formed and cemented. Social skills are practised alongside musical skills. Later in life, music can be a valuable passport to social networks in new places.

MUSIC IN THE COMMUNITY

The Centre plays an important role in the cultural life of the community. Many of its students feature in the Doncaster Arts and Museum Society's concerts every year. Music Centre groups give regular concerts for parents and the general public.

During the Centre's annual festival, which is spread over several days, every group takes part in one of the concerts. In June 1994, massed concerts at the Dome formed part of the Doncaster 800 anniversary celebrations. In April 2000 similar concerts celebrated the new millennium.

Orchestras and bands give free concerts to support school fetes and national or local charities. Advanced pupils from Music Centre orchestras play in other ensembles such as the Hall Gate Orchestra or the Boyce Orchestra.

Adult instrumental classes on all orchestral and band instruments are offered at the Music Centre. The Danum Strings orchestra welcomes adults who already have some facility on a string instrument. Weekend courses are organised for amateur musicians of all ages. Pre-school and infant school children and their carers attend "Music Maker" classes for an early experience of music.

The Centre provides a diverse range of opportunities for people of all ages to make music. The youngest pupil is under one year old, the oldest, eighty seven.

FRIENDS OF THE MUSIC CENTRE FUND

Doncaster Music Service has established a permanent fund, the purpose of which is to help disadvantaged children in areas such as purchasing, for long term loan, musical instruments etc. which cannot be funded in other ways and, also, ensuring that no child is financially prevented from taking part in Music Centre activities, so that musical opportunities remain open to all.
The Friends of the Music Centre Fund has recently been given charitable status (charity number 1080128).

Donations to this fund are always welcome. Further details may be obtained from the William Appleby Music Centre office tel: (01302) 734810 / 734811, or by sending an e-mail to WAMC

A WAY FORWARD IN LIFE

Each year a significant number of our instrumental pupils go on to advance their musical skills in music colleges or universities, and former Doncaster area pupils hold important posts in a number of internationally famous orchestras and bands.

Whether or not our pupils make a career in music, they find through their work at the Music Centre that they have been given a lifelong skill and an understanding and enjoyment of music that far surpasses anything a non-player can hope to gain. Along the way they will not only have found something to do in their spare time, but will have acquired important life skills such as discipline, self-discipline, reliability, punctuality and respect for each other. They will have learned to relate to others and to take responsibility.