Learning & Participation

Cherry Trees

Annual Neighbourhood Schools Project (2020)

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Each year, a team of artists returns to The Cherry Trees School, where they receive a very warm welcome from pupils and staff, who refer to our creative music project as one of the highlights of their school year.

The Cherry Trees School is a primary school for boys with social, emotional and mental health difficulties. Spitalfields Music has built a particularly successful relationship with the school, working with them consistently over the last 15 years. This long-standing partnership with the school, pupils and staff, allows us to take the project further each year. 

During an annual two-week residency project, a team of musicians work with the pupils and staff to write songs and make music. The project culminates in an assembly performance for families and staff, during which the boys present songs they have learnt, as well as the original music they have created. 

The project builds pupils’ confidence, improves their teamwork skills, encourages them to use their voices, and develops their creative music abilities. It also embeds music in the everyday life of the school, normalising singing and supporting staff to bring music into the classroom. 

This year, the Spitalfields Music team will be returning to Cherry Trees in October 2020.

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Teachers’ feedback:

“The boys were singing their songs outside music sessions (on the bus)!”

 “It has definitely made music a normal part of the day. I was in tears when my boys performed – I was so proud!”

Artistic Leader’s feedback:

“The level of group singing was unprecedented – boys all singing together as a class, as a school, and also being able to sing in a variety of group singing situations: call and response, layering, canon. One class’s song involved a four part layering – four parts!