National Open Youth Orchestra publishes major report

The National Open Youth Orchestra (NOYO) and Sound Connections have just launched an in-depth report about the first four years of the orchestra, and what has been learnt through NOYO’s pioneering approach to working with young disabled people.

From 2018 to 2022, Sound Connections acted as independent evaluators, evidencing progress against three desired outcomes for NOYO:

  1. The exclusion of young disabled people from orchestras is reduced
  2. Young disabled people have developed their skills
  3. The music sector has increased its support for young disabled people

The report shares insights based on four years of work with the NOYO, presents the emerging NOYO model, a summary of findings from Sound Connections’ evaluation, plus key messages and calls to action from NOYO musicians.

This is a must read for everyone in music education and anyone wanting to develop inclusive practice.

Co-produced by Abigail D’Amore and Jennifer Raven on behalf of Sound Connections, and the team at Open Up Music – the charity behind NOYO.

Chris Walters, the MU’s National Organiser for Education and Health & Wellbeing, commented: “In just four years, NOYO has established a unique philosophy and way of working that is redefining expectations for inclusive youth music ensembles. All music educators can benefit from reading this new report and applying NOYO’s ideas to their own teaching.”


National Open Youth Orchestra:

Sound Connections:

Musicians Union:

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