Music Generation is Ireland’s National Music Education Programme

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Music Generation is Ireland’s National Music Education Programme, helping children and young people access high quality music tuition in their local area.

Since it was founded in 2010, the programme has achieved unprecedented growth, extraordinary achievement, rapid expansion and phenomenal success. Music Generation has reached over 26,000 children and young people in 12 areas of the country (Carlow, Clare, Cork City, Laois, Louth, Limerick City, Mayo, Sligo, South Dublin, Offaly/Westmeath and Wicklow), in addition to creating some 330 employment opportunities, mainly for musicians to deliver tuition.
Further good news for the programme was announced earlier this autumn, when one of the world’s biggest rock bands, U2, gifted €2m to Music Generation, which will be raised from their iNNOCENCE & eXPERIENCE Irish concerts taking place in November this year. This donation will allow Music Generation to develop and extend its work into new areas of the country and reach thousands more young musicians.

Welcoming the announcement, Rosaleen Molloy, National Director of Music Generation said, “Music Generation would not exist without U2’s vision. It was the band’s very own personal experience of music education as children and teenagers that has driven their commitment to kick-start this ground breaking project.”
“We are extremely grateful to the band for their continued support of children and young people’s access to music education in Ireland and we welcome this announcement with enthusiasm and excitement. Music Generation is immensely proud to be associated with U2’s iNNOCENCE & eXPERIENCE concerts. U2’s ongoing generosity and support will ensure a brighter musical future for many more of Ireland’s children and young people along with continuing to create employment opportunities for musicians.”
“The impact of the original €7m philanthropic donation from U2 and The Ireland Funds has been extraordinary. Every day, the lives of thousands of children and young people are being transformed through access to a variety of music tuition opportunities – everything from songwriting initiatives to brass bands, orchestras, choirs, rock groups, rap projects, grupaí cheoil and composers clubs. The original donation has seed-funded development and generated ongoing sustained 50/50 investment from the Department of Education and Skills and Local Music Education Partnerships”, continued Rosaleen. “
“U2’s ultimate vision for music education in Ireland is for universal access for every child and young person across the whole country. Music Generation shares in this vision and we look forward to the prospect of the programme expanding from 2016, with thanks to U2’s continued support for music education in Ireland.”
“The reason why Music Generation has been such a success story is because of the partnership base that underpins how we work”, said Rosaleen. “U2, The Ireland Funds, with the support of Bank of America, Music Network, the Department of Education and Skills and Local Music Education Partnerships, together with the Arts Council, are our key partners. Without their input and support Music Generation would not have been possible.”

Music Generation: making music education happen Since 2010,
Music Generation’s achievements have been exceptional. Key accomplishments include:

  • Establishment of the programme in 12 areas of the country, 18 months ahead of schedule
  •  Access and participation now reaching some 26,000 children and young people annually who would otherwise not have had the choice of access or the chance to participate
  •  Creation of over 330 employment opportunities (300 musicians; 30 management and administration roles)
  •  Delivery of 80 different programmes in over 360 tuition centres
  • Accessible tuition offered in over 50 different types of instruments across all genres of music
  •  Establishment of 12 Instrument Banks, 5 Music Libraries, 5 Recording Studios including 1 mobile recording studio and pop up performance Music Bus
  •  Mounting of over 100 public performances annually attended by 30,000 audience members
  •  Producing 10 national seminars and presenting at 4 national and 4 international conferences
  •  Delivery of over 150 professional development courses for musicians
  •  Initiation of Young Ambassadors Performance Programme featuring 200 musicians performing at 25 national and international events
  •  Working with over 55 local and national partners from the education, arts, community, voluntary, public, private and philanthropic sectors
  •  20 new commissions by professional musicians and composers for pieces specially written for children and young people
  •  Securing of ongoing annual sustainable partnership funding from Government (€2.5m) and local Music Education Partnerships (€2.2m) estimated at €4.7m annually from 2016 onwards
  •  Investment of €450,000 from the Arts Council for a new partnership programme, 2013 – 2015 > Initiation of a National Research Partnership with St. Patrick’s College, Drumcondra to inform and influence future national policy
  •  Initiation of International Partnerships including collaboration with the Sage Gateshead UK, CME Institute USA, the John Lennon Educational Tour Bus Europe, Nimbus School of Recording & Media, Vancouver
  •  Awarding of Link Provider Status to Music Generation by DIT Conservatory of Music to deliver University accredited professional development training in music education for professional musicians.

Music Generation is Ireland’s National Music Education Programme which transforms the lives of children and young people through access to high quality subsidized performance music education. Established in 2010 by Music Network, Music Generation was made possible by a €7m philanthropic donation – €5m from U2 and €2m from The Ireland Funds – the largest ever philanthropic donation to music education in Ireland in the history of the State. The philanthropic donation was gifted to progress the implementation of Music Network’s Feasibility Study for a National System of Local Music Education Services.
Annually the programme now reaches some 26,000 children and young people in 12 areas of the country (Carlow, Clare, Cork City, Laois, Louth, Limerick City, Mayo, Offaly/Westmeath, Sligo, South Dublin and Wicklow), creating over 330 employment opportunities, mainly for musicians.
Music Generation works closely with Government through the Department of Education and Skills (DES) and Local Music Education Partnerships (MEPs) in each of the 12 areas. The original €7m donation has seed-funded development in each of these areas. From 2016 these programmes will continue to be sustained through ongoing 50/50 funding from the DES and MEPs, ensuring a long term and lasting outcome from U2 and The Ireland Funds’ philanthropic giving.
The €2m donation from U2’s iNNOCENCE & eXPERIENCE concerts will enable expansion of the programme to more areas of the country.
Music Generation believes in every child and young person’s musical potential and their innate artistry, that it is every child and young person’s right to have the choice of access and the chance to participate as a musical citizen and that music doesn’t just change lives, it transforms lives.
Music Generation focuses on performance music education – that is vocal and instrumental tuition, encompassing all music genres and all types of instruments and vocal styles, delivered by skilled professional musicians interacting in an inspirational way with children and young people.

Visit www.musicgeneration.ie for further information.

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