Drake Music Scotland

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In May 2018, Trefoil awarded Drake Music Scotland £18,480 to enable them to work with Lothian Autistic Society, The Yard and Teens+ from August 2018 to June 2019 and provide high quality and meaningful music tuition for a total of 24 children and young people with special needs. The project targeted young disabled people with a keen interest and talent for music who are not getting access to meaningful and challenging tuition and give them the opportunity to show others what they can do. The organisation provided music tuition for a total of 69 children and young people with special needs.

Outputs Drake Music Scotland delivered:

• 30 half-days sessions with Teens Plus at their activities hubs in Liberton Brae and Ravenscroft Street

Centre

• 30 half-day sessions with Lothian Autistic Society at Pilmeny Youth Centre including an Easter

Holiday club week at Inch House

• 15 half-day sessions with FABB Scotland at Fort Early Years Centre

• 15 half-day sessions with Action for Children at Gilmerton Short Breaks Centre

• Sharing events with each organisation.

The sessions gave participants an opportunity to learn to play an instrument such as a keyboard and guitar for the first time using the revolutionary system Figurenotes. The players match coloured shapes representing different notes with the stickers on their instruments and can play tunes very quickly and easily. Some children also learned singing techniques and enjoyed hearing their own voice through a microphone.

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Ruby’s body language changed dramatically in 4 days - she was very inward and head down, found it hard to make eye contact and fiddled with her sleeves - by the end of the performance she was standing up straight, looking at the audience and her head held high singing!

Christina has communication difficulties and is very distressed without wearing the hood of her sweater up. Our specialist musician persuaded Christina to allow a microphone inside her hood when she was outside. Christina now really enjoys listening to the sound of her own voice.

At beginning of the project, Fraser’s anxiety meant he couldn’t come into the activities room and would stay at the door. Our Specialist teacher Fi Sharp handed Fraser an iPad with a music making app thumbjam on it. A couple of weeks of playing this in the corridor, Fraser felt comfortable to come in to the room for longer and longer spells each week. He has also recorded some vocalisations.

After her first song, Ava’s two sisters spontaneously got up and came and stood behind her as ‘back-up dancers’. Ava’s parents told us they thought this was the first time the sisters had joined into one of Ava’s activities rather than the other way round.