In 2014, Fusion Arts ran community music performance project, Beat This!, which engaged young people aged 14-25 across Oxfordshire in a creative series designed to provide training and build confidence in their musical abilities.
Experienced music leaders, professional artists, and producers guided the ten weekly sessions, including local spoken word artist Steve Larkin, and music producer Alex Hehir. Course participants received masterclasses in lyric writing, music production, and performance skills, and learned about organising large-scale events leading up to their own performance showcase at Arts at the Old Fire Station in 2014.
We collaborated with BG Records to produce a CD compilation of music produced across the courses. Tracks were written and performed by the participants and recorded by Alex Hehir. Hosted at Fusion Arts, the CD launch party featured live music and performances from all members of the group including some solo sets.
“It allows you to meet lots of people and be inspired by lots of diverse ways of thinking. I think there are so many young people that could really benefit from having this sort of thing available to them” said a 15-year-old participant from Cherwell School in the Oxford Mail.
All participants on the course achieved an Arts Awards Accreditation, a nationally recognised creative arts certificate.
Fusion Arts worked in collaboration with Littlemore, East Oxford, and Witney Early Intervention Hubs. The project was funded by Youth Music and Arts Council England, and supported by Oxford City Council and Oxfordshire County Council.