First Access and Continuation

Cumbria Music Service delivers the First Access programme – a year-long opportunity for the whole class to learn an instrument together alongside first-hand experience of live music, group singing, ensemble playing, performance and composing. The instruments are provided as part of the programme.

Our music specialists deliver lessons alongside the classroom teacher and support staff to enable sharing of skills and ideas and joint planning.

If you run your own First Access type programme or receive First Access tuition (whole class instrumental teaching) through the Cumbria Music Service you will qualify for a free licence for Charanga’s Musical School. You will have to attend one of the free training sessions held in the Autumn term (2016).


African Drumming

This is a slightly different programme, starting with an intensive session by a visiting master musician Zozo Shuaibu, followed by half termly visits, culminating in end of term performances. The teaching is supported by comprehensive e-learning materials developed by Zozo and Kevin Hamel. Although we have some sets of djembes to help you out we would look to you to purchase your own sets for the future.


Whole Class Instrumental Tuition – Continuation

Schools who have experiences the First Access Programme have been keen for their classes to continue after the first year – and we’re now pleased to be able to offer this. We can tailor this to your needs – introducing new players to existing groups (mixed year groups/whole KS2 in smaller schools) or for whole/part year groups to continue into a second and even third year.

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Instrumental Tuition

Cumbria Music Service has a team of 35 instrumental and vocal teachers delivering tuition in brass, guitar, keyboard, strings and woodwind right across Cumbria. As well as managing CRB clearance and performance management, CMS ensures that all teachers have regular training in regulatory issues, curriculum development and ICT amongst other things.

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Hub partner BlueJam delivers workshops in schools in Jazz & Improvisation, Singing & Songwriting and Drumming.

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Music Curriculum Support

Cumbria Music Service offers flexible packages, designed to enhance the delivery of the Music Curriculum. Our music curriculum specialists deliver practical and memorable cross curricular learning experiences that address the key areas of the Music Curriculum.

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Live Music Visits

Cumbria Music Service has 2 live music ensembles taking KS1&2 presentations and workshops into schools.


It is a rare privilege to have live music in school and was thoroughly enjoyable. Thank you!

An excellent example of education with and about music. We were in turn moved, exhilarated and inspired.


Excellent mix of music, listening and performing. Children responded really well – new experience for some. Thank you.

The performances cover the following aims in the National Curriculum:

  • Listen to high quality live music from different traditions.
  • Create, select and combine sounds.
  • Appreciate listening to live music by great composers and musicians.
  • Sing songs and play tuned and un-tuned instruments.
  • Develop an understanding of the history of music.

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Singing Out

For hundreds of years Carlisle Cathedral has been training children to sing. The Singing Out programme takes those skills into the community to ensure that good quality singing is available to primary school children throughout north Cumbria.
Singing Out:

Sends singing teachers from the Cathedral into primary schools to develop their singing ability.

  • Sends groups of choristers into local schools to sing to and with pupils.
  • Provides opportunities for children to perform in the Cathedral
  • Conducts singing training sessions with teachers
  • Develops creativity and confidence
  • Encourages team work, concentration and social integration

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Supporing Cumbria’s Vocal Strategy, in line with the National plan aim “to ensure every child sings regularly”, we offer weekly sessions with one of our vocal specialists to form a class choir, to develop and rehearse good vocal technique and to offer a school performance each term.

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