Project is hitting the high notes

An innovative new scheme is aiming to inspire the next generation of musicians at Kirkintilloch’s Kelvinbank Resource Centre.

The Sounds of the Gallery Project focuses on pupils from Merkland School and young people from across East Dunbartonshire with autistic spectrum disorders (including Asperger’s) and those with a learning disability.

The project is a collaboration between East Dunbartonshire Council’s Local Area Co-ordinators service and EDLC Trust with support from Creative Scotland Project Funding.

The emphasis is on creating new songs and new pieces of instrumental music so that the participants have hands-on experience of making creative and artistic decisions, and then are able to gain the skills to turn these into finished performances and recordings.

Councillor Michael O’Donnell, the council’s social work convenor, said: “Music is a hugely therapeutic medium and a massive part of every young person’s life when they’re growing up.

“There is an increasing realisation that active participation inmusic-making has beneficial effects on memory, social skills and general well-being and it’s excellent that this project allows these young people to access these benefits for themselves.

“It is hoped that music-creation will become a lifelong source of interest and stimulus for these young people.”

The project follows on from the highly successful Tam o’ Shanter event that took place in Milngavie’s Lillie Art Gallery in March 2015. A group of young people from the project composed the music for a dramatic reading of Robert Burns’ poem by the actor Tam Dean Burn.

Sounds of the Gallery will develop this idea, with three public concerts planned. If you would like to join call George Burt or Ashleigh Grant-Ng on 0300 1234510.