La Folia’s new initiative for young people with special needs
“They seem to be able to unlock something inside our students”
“I never thought my child would be able to do that, like other children”
“Can this be me?” one of our participants asked.
Our response is always “YES!”
Howard Moody, Artistic Director, writes: “Having created projects in special schools for over twenty-five years, the time has come to establish this all important work and secure its development for the future. Singing lies at the core of this music making – singing from the heart – creating songs with an originality that is deeply special and only formed once a sense of trust has been established.
This fusion of singing and trust has led to a new initiative: we have created the singing trust, a ring-fenced strand within La Folia, raising money to expand creative work in Special Schools in Wiltshire and beyond in order to create a legacy for the future. More projects must develop, based on a way of working that creates new and original music from the students. The fact that tenor Mark Padmore has trusted us enough to share his talents with us and start to take our most recent songs around the world, shows us that anything is possible. All music is to be shared, and all musicians want to discover the full potential of the power of music. Who might be the next great artist to discover that the world’s starriest stages have as much to learn from these students as from anyone?
Cathedrals have their own Choral Foundations that have given thousands of children the opportunity to discover music as a daily ritual. I was fortunate enough to have been one of those choristers; I loved the experience of being able to fill a building with sound whilst singing some of the finest choral music. However, I feel that the songs by our special needs students often go much further in expressing who we really are and what we should all reflect upon – we need to listen differently. One of my ambitions is now to ensure that Special Schools, with the help of the singing trust, can continue and develop their own projects with La Folia.
the singing trust will help every part of our society to experience how the power of the Arts can take us beyond ourselves. Our most recent project, inspired by Magna Carta, opens with the statement, “We need a system bigger than we are,” and at the end finds resolution in the realisation and experience that the answer lies within rather than without: “Powerful voice, exploding inside, makes us bigger than we are.” This is indeed the “Magna Carta of Music”.
For a detailed look at the impact of La Folia’s work, click here to read a case study, commissioned and funded by Wiltshire Music Connect.
To find out more and help support the singing trust, contact Megan Brand: firstname.lastname@example.org / 07745 285880