The first day of May saw me talking with Peter Cook, the Education Project Manager for Sounds New, jazz saxophonist, teacher, and self-styled ‘Fleet Commander’ (you’ll have to listen to the interview for the explanation for that one!).
The educational aspect of Sounds New is a crucial part of the festival’s mission, to engage younger audiences with contemporary music, to find ways in which they can participate in and respond to it. ‘’That’s really the big vision of Sounds New,’’ Peter remarks later in the interview, ‘’to really engage young people now in the music of our time, and for them to be the performers and composers [of tomorrow].’’ As he goes on to explain, different projects encourage people to respond in different ways to Sounds New, through not just music but other art-forms, as part of a wider remit in getting them thinking about contemporary music.
There’s a huge range of projects taking place as part of Sounds New’s educational outreach, with events unfolding all year round, feeding into, and developing ideas associated with, the festival itself.
Here, Peter talks about why helping to bring contemporary music to young audiences is important both to Sounds New and to him, and looks ahead to some of the events occurring this year.
With thanks to Peter.