Educational Projects, in association with Merton Music Foundation

The Festival sets great store on music in education and the importance of building audiences for the future. Over the years, our partnership with Merton Music Foundation has enabled many thousands of Merton children to both participate in and attend workshops and concerts.

In a recent Merton Music Foundation (MMF) survey involving 400 children from schools in the east of the borough, over 80% of the children questioned had never been to the theatre or a live music event. Of those who had, most had been taken by their schools. So, in January 2019 WIMF supported MMF when it staged ‘Stringfever’, 2 special concerts at the theatre for Merton’s primary-aged children.

In 2022 WIMF is again working with MMF and the Jazz group Blues and Roots Ensemble to present a day of three concerts for primary school children at New Wimbledon Theatre, concentrating on the music and life of composer and bandmaster Charles Mingus in his centenary year.  The evening will see the participation of MMF jazz and concert bands.

Previous Educational Projects with MMF include:

Recorder Workshop With Piers Adams, enjoyed by 140 young recorder players.

Merton on the March (2017)
Merton Music Foundation Choir of 50 young voices opened the Festival with Songs from the First World War, and formed the Children’s Chorus for the performance of the Robert Graves Oratorio, ‘The Cool Web’. Schools programmes and workshops explored the social life of the Merton Community at a time of war, and the history of Wimbledon Common.

The Soldier’s Tale (2014)
The WIMF original production, 180 children took part in a cross-curricular arts project on the theme ‘A Soldier in Life’, leading to a workshop performance.

The Journey (2013)
Nearly 200 singers and jazz musicians from Merton schools performed an innovative ‘groove’ cantata specially composed by Peter Churchill, which explored the history of immigration to the UK. The project was developed to the scale of 1,500 Merton school children performing at London’s Royal Albert Hall.

Petrushka (2012)
The WIMF original production, primary schools in Merton enjoyed workshops in storytelling, puppet making, and dance, leading to a workshop performance.

Noye’s Fludde (2011)
Noye’s Fludde production – with local Merton schools, and Wimbledon College of Art providing costumes, masks and puppets, with more than 200 local school children and amateurs playing and singing alongside world-class musicians.