The Vale Music Ensemble 2016

What’s it all about?

In summer 2015 Bangdrum CIC (based at The Vale) piloted The Vale Music Ensemble. A brand new 50 piece youth ensemble that brought together young people from all over Greater Manchester. The project was a huge success with ensemble writing their own music, creating / recording a CD and performing at Manchester’s premier live music venue ‘Band on the Wall‘.

The project was funded by The National Foundation of Youth Music and responded to the need for high quality ‘young people led’ music making opportunities in Greater Manchester. It provided high quality small group and one to one tuition in percussion, ‘rock band’ , vocals, brass and steel pan. The project helped our young people to find their own musical voice and develop their composition skills, technique and confidence.

To find out more about The Vale Music Ensemble watch the documentary below or visit

The show music go on…..

This summer (2016) we will see the second phase of the project take shape with the development of ‘The Incredible Plastic Street Band!‘.  Following evaluation of the project and with music making partners and young people in the local area, we have seen that there has been a steady decrease in young people taking up brass instruments in the tameside over the last few years.  How can that be? Do we not live in the land of brass bands?

So we decided to do something about it and The Incredible Plastic Street Band was born!

The project will:

  • provide an accessible, exciting introduction to brass ensemble playing for pupils in areas where musical participation is low;
  • help local brass bands recruit the next generation of members through sharing best practice in outreach and building skills/expertise of local band tutors in child-centred tuition.

We will use  ‘p-bones’/’p-trumpets’ and percussion to create a deliberately playful and energetic first experience of group music making.

Bangdrum will work closely with two local brass bands to share their expertise in marketing, recruitment and youth-led group music making.

This is a short, focused project that will be catalyst for change and secure an exciting future for youth brass playing in Tameside.

Key Aim:

To increase the opportunities for young people in Tameside to enjoy high quality brass band music making, by providing an exciting first experience of ‘brass’ ensemble playing; and by improving the capacity and capability of local bands to recruit, retain and develop young players.

This opportunity is open to around 30 young people interested in learning or developing their brass playing.

30 places will be available for young people aged 7-11. There will also be several places available for older participants.

Read more here >

Watch the documentary: