Awards for Young Musicians becomes a National Youth Music Organisation

We’re delighted to announce that we’re now one of eight new National Youth Music Organisations, taking the total number from seven to fifteen.

National Youth Music Organisations provide opportunities for thousands of young people across the country to take part in making, performing and enjoying music. From the coast of Cornwall up to the northern borders of England, these organisations offer large-scale, inclusive performances, music programmes, residencies, summer schools and workshops, helping to develop their skills, experience, and knowledge of music and supporting them to excel as young creatives.

We will receive funding as part of the Arts Council’s 2023-26 Investment Programme. The Department for Education has recognised the outstanding work of the organisations in the programme and will contribute £524,410 a year towards the programme.

The expansion of National Youth Music Organisations announced today will lead the way in developing young musicians and music-makers, prioritising learning and expanding opportunities for young people to be inspired, take on advanced musical challenges, and make decisions about their future education and careers. Alumni of the programme includes internationally-acclaimed artists Little Simz and Ed Sheeran.

“Being a NYMO is a fantastic affirmation of the impact of our work with talented young musicians from low income families: we’re looking forward to working with our fellow NYMOs and our colleagues across music education to share everyone’s learning and further young people’s musical progression throughout the country.”

Hester Cockcroft, CEO, AYM

“Music in all its forms has huge benefits for young people. By more than doubling the number of National Youth Music Organisations we are bringing opportunities to learn an instrument, compose, and make music to even more children across the country. The organisations joining the programme will provide thousands more young people with the chance to experience the joys music can create, and to learn skills that will stay with them throughout their lives, whether that means making music for fun or pursuing a career as a professional musician.”

Arts Council England Chief Executive, Darren Henley

“High quality music education is an important part of children and young people’s lives, both in and out of school, which is why the Government published the National Plan for Music Education last year and the Model Music Curriculum in 2021. I want to see more young people across the country given the opportunity to make music, so I am delighted that we are expanding the number of National Youth Music Organisations from seven to fifteen. This is an important step towards the ambition set out in the National Plan, for all children and young people to have the opportunity to progress their musical interests and talents, including professionally.”

Minister of State for Schools, Nick Gibb

“Having financial support with my guitar lessons so I can have them frequently and for longer has let me delve into complex topics with my teacher that we wouldn’t normally have time for. This has been invaluable when composing. Being an AYM Award winner has been one of my greatest achievements: without AYM I would not be the musician I am today.”

Maddy, Alumna guitarist and drummer, 20

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