Welcome to the Centre for Wessex Young Musicians - home of the Wessex Youth Orchestra
The CWYM (based at the Bournemouth and Poole College of Further Education), is a Saturday morning music centre providing quality ensemble training and music theory classes for young musicians of all ages and stages. Now with more than 200 members (and continuing to expand), it is one of the largest music centres on the South Coast. With three main concerts each season, a Wessex Young Soloists’ Concert Series, highly successful music festival performances, concert tours, charity busking events, visits to London’s West End and Southbank, a Centre newsletter and tuck shop, the CWYM not only offers high quality musical experiences, it makes it a lot of fun too.
The Centre’s largest and best known ensemble is the Wessex Youth Orchestra directed by CWYM Director Susanna Riddell. Now entering its 50th season, the WYO regularly appears at Lighthouse, Poole’s Centre for the Arts, across the UK and on international tours to great acclaim. Maintaining a 100% success rate in all WYO appearances at the National Festival of Music for Youth since 2011, and in the summer of 2016, acheiving the additional and indeed the highest accolade currently available to youth orchestras in the UK - Music for Youth's National Partnership Award, the WYO continues to prove itself as one of the most exciting and successful regional youth orchestras of today.
An off-shoot of the WYO is the Wessex Youth Chamber Orchestra, a group of 35 or so WYO musicians who come together for one-off performances of chamber repertoire. Whilst the WYO and WYCO offer access to a wide range of musical experiences for the Centre’s more advanced musicians, the CWYM’s other ensembles remain equally important. They provide vital training for our younger musicians (and possibly future members of the WYO) in both the preliminary and intermediate stages of their musical education. There are two string orchestras – Wessex Starter Strings and Wessex Middle Strings, two concert wind bands – Wessex Junior Fanfare and Wessex Youth Fanfare, and our newest venture the Wessex Young Apprentices Orchestra. The range of Saturday morning activities is complimented by music theory classes, covering the necessary knowledge of grades 1-5 ABRSM Music Theory.
Not forgetting our fantastic team of SWYM (Society for Wessex Young Musicians) volunteers and parent helpers who run the Centre tuck shop, assist with CWYM fundraising or simply become the “movers and shifters”, Saturday mornings at the CWYM are busy, noisy, full of energy and laughter. We’re very proud of our family-friendly atmosphere, why not try it yourselves? Come and join the Wessex family!
CWYM and the COVID19 outbreak We are very pleased to be able to announce that CWYM activities will resume this Autumn. We will be offering an altered timetable with a blended approach of small group (bubble) rehearsals and sectional training, and online rehearsals in preparation for a pre-recorded concert event which will take place on YouTube just before Christmas. For further information for new members please send your enquiries to: CWYM Director - Susanna Riddell or CWYM Co-Ordinator Beverley Williams
Term dates: Autumn 2020: According to ensemble: Saturday October 3rd/10th - Saturday December 12th Spring 2021: To be confirmed - COVID19 circumstances permitting - the WYO termcould take place between Saturday January 9th - Saturday April 10th 2021 (with break for Easter mid-concert preparations) To be confirmed - COVID19 circumstances permitting - the CWYM ensembles' term could take place between Saturday January 16th - Saturday March 13th/20th TBC Summer 2021: To be confirmed - COVID19 circumstances permitting - the CWYM/WYO term could take place between Saturday April 24th - July 3rd Rehearsal Location: Jellicoe Theatre Building, College, Danecourt Road, Parkstone, BH14 0PQ
December 2020 - WYO and CWYM Ensembles - Online pre-recorded Concert event
"Spring Concert" - CWYM Ensembles - Saturday March 2021 - Jellicoe Theatre, The College. TBC
"50th Anniversary Gala Concert" - Wessex Youth Orchestra - 7.30pmSaturday April 10th 2021 - Lighthouse, Poole's Centre for the Arts
Summer Concert - all ensembles - Saturday July 3rd 2021 - Lighthouse, Poole's Centre for the Arts TBC
CWYM Projects For information on previous CWYM Projects, including the Great Wessex Windies Day 2019, please click here.
GoFundMe Page! Can you help us to meet the costs of recording projects, as we strive to maintain musical training and focus towards challenges and performance, whilst keeping our young musicians and our audiences socially distant and safe during these COVID times? What will we be doing? Well here's one we did earlier! Enjoy!