Project information

Inspiring children through the magic of live music

Apollo Music Projects transforms the lives of disadvantaged children through the magic of live classical music. Since 2004, over 7,500 children from primary and special schools in deprived parts of London have benefited from our programmes, on an exciting journey from classroom to concert hall.

November 2017 - July 2021

Charity information: Apollo Music Projects

Apollo Music Projects logo
  • Need


    Our programmes aim to tackle the educational and personal disadvantages that children in deprived areas encounter. The children we work with can suffer from low educational attainment and aspiration, poor concentration and self-confidence, with limited access to high-quality artistic and educational experiences. All children have the right to be enriched by music, and to benefit from the improved self-confidence, concentration and sense of entitlement that our programme can bring.


    Our project uses music to improve children’s listening, communication and concentration, which in turn benefits general learning and attainment. Our project gives children a sense of belonging and unlimited possibilities through working closely with talented musicians. We tackle inequality of cultural access by providing high-quality educational and artistic experiences at local arts venues, making these children feel welcome in a classical music environment.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To excite and inspire children through the magic of live music.


    » 225 interactive classroom sessions, 5 chamber orchestra workshops and 2 symphony concerts in 19 primary schools and one special school each year

    By having 1100 children from 20 schools enjoying and being inspired by our workshops and concerts, and some cases taking up learning a musical instrument themselves as a result.

    Aim 2

    To build support for our activities.


    » Building a Friends' association and inviting them to see the project in action.

    By attracting new supporters and engaging existing supporters, and by developing new partnerships with London boroughs, Music Hubs and schools.

    Aim 3

    To help children develop the art of listening.


    » Help children to discover for themselves how to listen more intently and follow what is happening in the music.

    Based on feedback from teachers and children, we will note improvements in children's listening and concentration levels - both during our sessions and in their regular lessons.

  • Impact


    Our project will bring about long-term changes such as developing better listening skills, communication and concentration for children; inspiring children to learn a musical instrument; boosting self-confidence and creativity; improving cultural access for disadvantaged children in deprived areas; and increasing educational attainment and aspiration. We will demonstrate success in this through positive feedback and statistics from teachers and children and a programme of research.


    Child protection – all staff and musicians have a current DBS certificate and sign up to our Child Protection Policy.

    Poor concentration/behaviour of children – we minimise this risk by making sure teachers and children know what to expect. Our workshop leaders have experience managing groups of children and maintaining their attention.

    Financial risk – we have an extensive fundraising strategy and business plan in place. We have successfully raised sufficient funds for all projects to date.


    We will report to donors using our communications strategy – via individual correspondence, e-newsletters, articles on our website and social media posts. At the end of the project, we will ensure donors know how their money was spent and the impact it had.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £133,923

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      Amount Heading Description
      £42,575 School workshops Six interactive classroom sessions in each school and Associate Artist visits
      £16,500 Chamber orchestra workshops Five interactive chamber orchestra workshops (each attended by ~4 schools) at fantastic local venues
      £26,000 Symphony orchestra concerts Two symphony orchestra concerts at Hackney Empire (approx. 10 schools attend each concert)
      £37,788 Salaries CEO & two administrators' salaries
      £11,060 General Administration General administration costs - fees, overheads, contingency

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Mark Williams Foundation £15,000 Guaranteed
    John Lewis Partnership £2,000 Guaranteed
    Willow Tree Trust £15,000 Guaranteed
  • Background


    Our project takes place in areas of London that have above average levels of deprivation – the boroughs of Hackney, Tower Hamlets, Haringey, Waltham Forest and Camden – as evidenced by low incomes, high numbers of people receiving benefits and above average unemployment. The populations are racially diverse with large immigrant and ethnic minority demographics.


    1100 children from 19 primary schools and one special school in Hackney, Tower Hamlets, Haringey, Waltham Forest and Camden. In each primary school, up to 60 Key Stage 2 children (aged 8-10) participate in our programme.
    The majority of the children we work with come from areas of high deprivation – with high levels of child poverty, above average numbers of children receiving free school meals and above average numbers of children speaking English as a second language.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    We are best placed to carry this out because our programmes have been proven to work effectively. An Institute of Education evaluation of our work commented: “The children clearly enjoyed the experiences and gained a lot from the programme. It provided them with an opportunity to explore their feelings, learn how music can change moods and use their imagination. For some of the children the programme was inspirational.” Apollo Music Projects is a finalist in the Music Teacher Awards 2016.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    David Chernaik

    David is the CEO & Programme Director who leads the school workshops and introduces and conducts the orchestra concerts.


£100 will match each school's contribution towards the full Apollo programme for five children.

"David and the AMP orchestra deliver music at the highest standard, beautifully played and imaginatively presented and at no time talking down to the children. Lucky kids who get to experience their work: if only it could be open to more people…"

Sir Simon Rattle, Patron, Apollo Music Projects