Saturday mornings are perfect for playing music, and Thornbury Area Music Centre is the place to be. TAMC meets at Marlwood School in Alveston, South Gloucestershire with various ensembles and groups meeting between 9.30am and noon. The morning is divided into various activities including a break with a tuck-shop. There are larger music groups suitable for young musicians aged 8-18 of all abilities, from beginners (1 term of lessons) to grade 8+, including orchestras, choir, wind bands and string groups.
All Thornbury Area Music Centre groups perform at least once per term in a public concert, with many musicians performing with a number of different ensembles. The centre also holds European Tours for the Senior Ensemble biannually, which in 2014 saw the musicians performing in various high-profile venues in Paris. All groups perform in whole-centre concerts, as well as taking part in the Music for Youth Festival.
All staff work both as professional musicians and instrumental teachers. Between them they have experiences of everything from playing with bands at Glastonbury to performing for the BBC. They are well-qualified and have been directing music ensembles and inspiring young musicians for many years, and enjoy passing on their skills and passion for all aspects of music making. All staff adhere to the Trust's safeguarding policies, and work in many of the local schools. You can find out more about them of the staff page.
Who is it for?
Thornbury Music Centre's Intermediate and Senior ensembles are for young musicians aged 8-18 of all levels. Players must have been playing an orchestral instrument for at least a term (strings, woodwind, brass or percussion) and it is advisable that they continue having school or private lessons outside of TAMC.
Do I have to live in Thornbury?
No. Current members live across South Gloucestershire, including Yate, Little Stoke and Hanham. Players are also welcome from Gloucestershire, including Wooton-Under-Edge, Stroud and Falfield. TAMC is known for being fun and for its high-standards of musicianship, and many of our players are happy to travel to join us.
Do I have to audition?
No. Not for the Saturday morning activities. There may occasionally be informal 'seating auditions, or a group director may suggest you play something to them when they think you are ready to move up to a more advanced group.
Will I know anybody?
If you live in South Gloucestershire then yes, quite probably. Even if you don't know anyone, everyone is very friendly and it's a great opportunity to make new friends. Why not come along for a morning and see what it's all about?
What do I need to bring?
Just yourself and your instrument. Music stands are provided, and the Trust provides all the music. You might want to bring along a small amount of money for the tuck-shop, and some spare reeds/strings as appropriate.'
When does each group rehearse?
9.30-10.30 - Training Strings, Training Wind, Senior Wind, Senior Strings
10.30-11.00 - Break and tuck-shop
11.00-11.30 - Choir, Chamber Music Ensembles, Music Theory & Musicianship
11.30-12.00 - Training Orchestra, Senior Orchestra
Where does it happen?
Thornbury Area Music Centre takes place between 9:30am and 12pm on Saturdays at Marlwood School, Alveston, nr Thornbury (BS35 3LA). You can use the map below.