Sony Music UK launches second Beyond The Instrument youth initiative

Sony Music UK launches second Beyond The Instrument youth initiative

Sony Music UK has launched its second instalment of Beyond The Instrument, its youth initiative to foster musical creativity, education and career development in the music industry. 

Held earlier this month, this year's event was part of Sony Music’s global commitment to enriching music education through collaborations and the integration of modern technology.   

In partnership with music charity Restore the Music (RTM), co-educational secondary and sixth form school Walker Riverside Academy in Newcastle upon Tyne was selected for this year's initiative. 

Walker Riverside Academy, a school situated in an area dealing with high levels of social deprivation and unemployment in the Northeast of England, received a tailored donation package from Sony Music UK. This package was designed to meet the specific needs of the school, equipping it with a range of musical instruments and DJ equipment.  

Promoting longevity of the initiative, the school was also granted classroom access to over 100 courses on PLAYVirtuoso, an educational platform loaded with video courses from electronic and rap producers, DJs and songwriters, alongside personal log-ins for students to further enrich their music education experience. 

In addition, PLAYVirtuoso will deliver a number of workshops to students and staff at Walker Riverside Academy ensuring the new equipment is fully maximised and embedded into the curriculum.  

Ministry Of Sound’s Newcastle DJ Schak, who is best known for viral dance hit Moving All Around (Jumpin') visited the school, where he performed for and interacted with 200 Key Stage 5 students, followed by a workshop with 25 students from years seven to 10. 

As we reflect on the achievements of the initiative, we are reminded of the power of music to change lives

Charlotte Edgeworth

Gareth Smith, headteacher at Walker Riverside Academy, said: “We are delighted and thankful to Sony Music and Restore the Music for their investment in the Academy. The impact of their support is palpable, with a thriving music department now at the heartbeat of the school again. The visit of DJ Schak culminates a remarkable 18 months in music development at the Academy and his visit to the school has helped to further spark the interest of our students in our music curriculum.” 

Schak said: “I’ve been wanting to give back to my community for a long time. It’s massively important to me to help others from the region as they’re the ones who basically gave me this career that I love so much! If I can help somebody change the direction of their life, that would mean more to me than any accolade or award.” 

Charlotte Edgeworth, Sony Music UK’s director of diversity, inclusion and social impact, said: “We’re proud to bring Beyond The Instrument to Newcastle and as we reflect on the achievements of the initiative, we are reminded of the power of music to  change lives. The dedication of artists like Schak, and the ongoing support of partner organisations are pivotal in our ongoing mission to make music education accessible to more students.” 

Polly Moore, CEO and founder of Restore The Music, added: “We are honoured to partner for the second year running with Sony Music UK, to deliver a package of music support to Walker Riverside Academy, a school that we identified most in need in Newcastle. Beyond The Instrument is a perfect collaboration of music partners aligning to deliver one single vision: access to more music for more kids.” 



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