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Discount music lessons for talented young player, how does it work?

(9 Posts)
CURIOUSMIND Tue 26-Jul-11 22:23:29

My Ds1 will be 8 in 3 months.He is currently working on Grade 5 piano.He has always been doing exceptionally well.Our school knows his talent.
But I heard children won't be registered G&T on music until 8?!
Is this true?
Somebody mentioned cheap music lessons for gifted players on this site.How does it work?
We are going to take one lesson soon(30 mins is not long enough for teacher to say what he wants to say), which will cost me £37.Also, he wants to start Oboe asap!
Any idea about how can I get some financial help for a really talented young musician?

unitarian Fri 29-Jul-11 00:41:46

It would be worth contacting the Music Advisory service at your LEA for advice.
Here in this county it is possible to get instruments on loan as well as financial awards.
You should also check out the junior departments at the Royal College of Music in London or the Royal Northern in Manchester depending on where you live. There are other junior conservatoires running Saturday schools. They have bursary schemes.
At a junior conservatoire such as this he would get first-class instrumental teaching as well as training in music theory and opportunities to play in small ensembles and orchestras. It is pretty well all-embracing and puts him with like-minded kids once a week.
From what you describe, this sort of thing would be right up his street.

MrsShrekTheThird Fri 29-Jul-11 00:56:34

unitarian's advice is brilliant. An awful lot depends where in the country you are - but there are grant awarding bodies which can help, for this you might also need to contact your local funding body (as well as local music service) - such as the community foundation, who can advise. I could also forward you a funding email I received today from the Voluntary Arts Network, if you want to inbox me an email addy, there's some useful stuff on there. Junior conservatoire stuff is excellent. DH and I both went through the county youth orchestra and conservatoire teaching system and it's excellent. There may also be young associates or learner teachers doing their training in your area for the new instrument - so to begin oboe there may be ways of getting lower cost tutoring at an extremely high standard from a conservatoire student. Lots of options, unfortunately can be very geographically biased. Our dc are starting the local pro orchestra's Children's Choir next month, which only runs at £30 a year, hugely subsidised. Lots going on if you hunt around smile

Macaroona Fri 29-Jul-11 01:00:44

Junior conservatoire all the way! Even if you're not close to one, give them a call as they'll def want to help your talented little chap.

unitarian Fri 29-Jul-11 10:50:30

DD began with piano but then asked to start a woodwind instrument and, later, a string instrument. We were pleased about this because it meant she could join orchestras with all the social advantages of that.

Otherwise I doubt if we would have made the contacts we did with the local music service and, hence, learned about the junior conservatoire she eventually joined. (We are not musical parents.) Piano can be quite isolating. So you should encourage his desire to learn the oboe for this reason and also because oboists seem to be a bit thin on the ground so he will be very welcome in county orchestra, secondary school orchestra etc.

Another reason is that applicants to junior conservatoires such as Junior RNCM are expected to play two instruments (one can be voice) but the audition is really about how well they play their first study instrument. Playing the piano at the standard he already has achieved is a pretty good assurance of success at audition. Merely showing some promise with the second study should be sufficient.

The fees for junior conservatoire might seem high but, as I said, they have bursary schemes and by the time you add up the cost of private tuition for two or more instruments and music theory, accompanists for exams, sheet music etc etc it means you're not paying out all that much more even without a bursary. (You can borrow music from the college library instead of buying three books for an exam which he'll only need for one piece from each.) It also means you won't have to sit in your car outside a teacher's house for an hour two or three weekday evenings when he gets older.

The beauty of her going to conservatoire for me as a non-musician was that all the advice and guidance she needed was there under one roof and I never again had to search for an accompanist or a teacher or sheet music - or suffer the consequences of a bad choice!
DD also had an absolute ball every Saturday and then stepped into a ready-made social life by joining the orchestra at university.

JazminKennedy Fri 29-Jul-11 23:42:04

Hiya, my daughter, age 6 also palys the piano, i've had been looking for a piano tutor for a year now with no luck but just recently found someone who advertised on gumtree, a retired music teacher and charges £10 for 45 mins! grin

As unitarian said, contact your LEA, they do discounted lessons for £5 per 30 mins at local music centres. I was told my daughter had to be 8, gifted or not!hmm

CURIOUSMIND Tue 02-Aug-11 22:33:00

Thank you guys, so many ideas!
I will certainly contact LEA and Junior conservatoire ,see what they can do.And we will certainly start on the second instrument soon.
Not sure whether this is anything to do with G&T register. Ds1 is registered on something else but not music , not yet.

unitarian Thu 04-Aug-11 00:10:32

You probably won't get much response from the conservatoires at this time of year but certainly go to an open day in the Autumn term. I think the open days are in November and auditions are in Feb/March for the following September. You can't apply for a bursary until he has been accepted so it is a bit of a leap in the dark. They are means tested but I should think you will qualify for one if you have a household income under £25k pa.

The LEA people probably aren't all on holiday and August might be a good time to telephone. Ask for the Music Advisory Service. If you do choose the conservatoire route then entry to that would be a year away so you will need to find a teacher anyway until then.

Another hint that I cottoned onto too late is that there are many small local awards, some county council sponsored, for talented youngsters.
I didn't find the G&T register at all helpful but the ABRSM parents' forum is informative about all sorts of things.

CURIOUSMIND Sat 06-Aug-11 22:48:38

We will soon rich enough to lose child benifit, but not rich enough to pay for these lessons easily.
Thanks a lot for your hints and tips. I will certainly look into them. So far , I found you have to be 8+ to apply for the local fund (up to £1000 a year), may be have to wait until his birthday, he is only 7 now.

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