Project information

Orchestra Unwrapped 2017

Orchestra Unwrapped in 2017 will extend our highly successful concert series for schoolchildren aged 7-11. The programme will offer thousands of children, many from disadvantaged backgrounds, the opportunity to experience live music by the Philharmonia in an engaging and meaningful way.

January 2017 - December 2017

Charity information: Philharmonia Orchestra

Philharmonia Orchestra logo
  • Need


    Orchestra Unwrapped intends to break down any barriers prohibiting the enjoyment of, and engagement with, classical music.
    The programme reaches thousands of children who are unlikely to otherwise have the opportunity to hear a professional symphony orchestra.


    Launched in 2011, Orchestra Unwrapped has offered over 13,000 children in Leicester the opportunity to hear the Orchestra live, and equip them with the educational resources to enhance their understanding, appreciation and enjoyment of music.
    In 2017, we would like to extend its scope to include Orchestra Unwrapped concerts in Basingstoke, Bedford and Canterbury with the concert programme of City, Town and Place to draw together repertoire associated to that particular location.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To break down any barriers prohibiting the enjoyment of, and engagement with, classical music.


    » Live education concerts featuring the Philharmonia Orchestra, performing a specially selected programme of musical excerpts with a leading specialist
    » A new live audience participation piece, commissioned for the Philharmonia Orchestra, in which the children and teachers take part
    » Teacher training session and learning resources for children pre-concert to maximise the impact of the live concert and legacy of the programme

    Success will be filling the live concerts to capacity, which is a maximum of 1,300 participants per Orchestra Unwrapped concert depending on the location.

    Aim 2

    Provide a legacy in music education, aimed at improving skills and confidence of teachers.


    » INSET teacher training sessions which focus on teaching music at school, demonstrating useful classroom exercises and guides, beyond the live concert
    » A comprehensive educational resource pack and CD, containing music, words and body percussion exercises
    » Learning resources are made available for children and teachers, for use in classroom and at home

    Success will be circa 95% of attending schools re-booking for the Orchestra Unwrapped concerts for the next year

    Aim 3

    To inspire children to take an interest in classical music and start playing instruments


    » Children actively participate in music during the live concerts

    Success will be a greater number of children in town and cities across the UK engaging in music activities in school.

  • Impact


    To date, a generation of over 13,000 Leicestershire children will grow up knowing that classical music belongs to them, just as it belongs to the regular audiences attending the evening concerts. The project has provided exceptional opportunities for thousands of schoolchildren and has consistently achieved its aim of providing first access musical opportunities to children. We now aim to achieve the same success in Basingstoke, Bedford and Canterbury.


    The biggest risk of the project is that the necessary funding cannot be found to realise it. To be able to increase the geographical scope and continue this project in future the Philharmonia needs to source additional income to cover the costs.


    In an effort to quantify the results, evaluation surveys are completed by children and accompanying teachers/adults following each concert and end-of-year reports will be compiled.
    The Orchestra will keep donors up to date with the project and how it is progressing throughout the year.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £60,000

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      Amount Heading Description
      £40,000 Education concerts Hosting four concerts per year, including players, conductor and presenters fees and royalties
      £9,200 Teacher training Hosting four teacher training INSET sessions per year before the Education concerts
      £10,800 Digital support Technical costs for the four education concerts

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Harpur Trust £12,940 Guaranteed
  • Background


    Orchestra Unwrapped concerts will take place at the Anvil, Basingstoke, the Bedford Corn Exchange and the Marlowe Theatre, Canterbury, with workshops taking place across respective towns and cities.


    Children aged 7-11 who attend school and live in Basingstoke, Bedford and Canterbury.
    In previous seasons in Leicester, Orchestra Unwrapped reached a cross-section of children including those in mainstream schooling, pupil referral units (PRU), special educational needs (SEN), home-schooled and children in care and foster homes.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    The Philharmonia Orchestra is a world-class symphony orchestra with six years' experience of running a high quality outreach project in Leicester. The project has grown over the years due to high demand, with a 'waiting list' of schools that have not been able to join a session in previous years.
    Orchestra Unwrapped has a demonstrative record of success with 95% of attending schools re-booking for the following year.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Alexandra Brierley

    Director of Education, the project leader

    Fflur Huysmans

    Education Coordinator, assisting with the logistics of the project

    Paul Rissmann

    Education specialist, facilitator for hands-on workshops for children and teachers making use of the Orchestra's instruments, players and music

    Jonathan Mayes

    Director, UK Programme & Creative Projects