Saturday music sessions for children set to launch across Oxfordshire

Children aged six to 13 will soon be able to join in musical groups in a series of new sessions at venues across the county on Saturday mornings.

The music groups are aimed at children who have been playing an instrument for at least a term and up to grade 5 and who are looking to develop their skills and performance with other players of similar ages. They will offer a fun, safe supportive atmosphere where children can make new friends and improve their playing by performing with others.

The 90-minute Saturday music centre sessions are available through school term times from 18 September and are available in Bicester, Oxford, Didcot, Thame and Witney.

Councillor Neil Fawcett, Cabinet Member for Community Services and Safety, said: “Culture plays a very important part in the lives our communities and this is especially true for our children. After the restrictions we’ve had to adapt to through the pandemic, the resumption of the music group sessions is a very welcome part of our commitment to the cultural life of children in the county.

“Evidence has found that learning music is best when you play with other people - it's more fun, and you make faster progress - come along to play in a band or group with children the same age and standard and have fun playing your instrument with others.”

Music centre instructors will offer expert tuition to allow the children in the sessions to develop their musical skills by playing as a group in an orchestral style. All of our instructors are DBS checked and risk assessments and safety precautions are being taken to reduce the risks of COVID-19 transmission.

Booking lessons is easy; parents can visit the council’s webpage, select the nearest venue and reserve a place. The groups will run on an ongoing basis through school terms. Participating children will need to bring their own instruments to the sessions.

The sessions will run each Saturday from 9am until 10.30am.

The new sessions come after school choirs and bands have not been able to rehearse together for more than a year, and children learning to play an instrument had to rely on remote instruction from their teachers.