What is Animate Orchestra

Animate Orchestra offers young musicians in school years 5 to 13 opportunities to play together and create their own music in a ‘Young Person’s Orchestra for the 21st Century’. Our members experience the musical teamwork of playing in an orchestra, while bringing their own ideas to how orchestras of the future might look and sound.

With specialist tutors and world-class musicians as mentors and guides, our courses are fun, sociable and musically adventurous. Members are from a wide range of cultural backgrounds and the music created reflects their skills, knowledge and interests.


To take part, you should:

  • live or go to school in the London Boroughs of Lambeth, Lewisham, Royal Greenwich or Southwark;
  • be in school years 5 – 13;
  • play an instrument, of any cultural background and with any level of experience – we welcome young people with skills in music technology into our designated music technology section;
  • ideally have access to your own instrument; and
  • be motivated and enthusiastic about creating your own music.

There are three main ‘tiers’ in which you can progress within Animate Orchestra:

Animate Orchestra Local Courses

Taking place in each borough, these courses are delivered by local music hubs and are open to all, regardless of ability or musical experience. Find out when courses are taking place in your borough.

Animate Orchestra Performing Ensemble

You may be invited to a Performing Ensemble course. These intermediate ensembles are recruited from the boroughs of Royal Greenwich and Lewisham (Animate Orchestra EAST) or Lambeth and Southwark (Animate Orchestra WEST).

Animate Artists

For our most experienced members, Animate Artists provides a more creatively challenging experience for young musicians through longer term cross-arts collaborations, performances and events.



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  • Course & Booking Info

    If you play an instrument, are in school years 5 - 8 (new members) in the London Boroughs of Greenwich, Lambeth, Lewisham or Southwark follow the link to find out how to join Animate Orchestra.
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