Last week, a National Vision for Instrumental Music Tuition was launched at an event in the Scottish Parliament hosted by East Lothian MSP Iain Gray.
With music tuition being vulnerable to funding cuts, provision of music teaching can be variable across the country, and often depends on whether families can afford instruments and equipment.
Mr Gray’s involvement with instrumental music tuition began with his support of the ‘Let the Children Play’ campaign, which evolved into a Scottish Government working group on the issue.
This has already produced positive outcomes for budding young musicians in Scotland, for example by ending the practice of some councils being able to charge students for taking exams, despite their tuition being compulsory.
The event in the parliament also celebrated the value of instrumental music tuition in Scottish schools, and around 90 music group representatives and school performers from across the country were in attendance.
The event was also attended and entertained by one of Scotland’s top jazz musicians, Wester Hailes-born saxophonist Tommy Smith.
Iain Gray MSP said:
“The value of music tuition to young people can be incredible, giving them confidence through playing with others and a new language to communicate with.
“I’ve seen this in my own family with my daughters, who learned to play instruments growing up and played in orchestras and bands, and still play today.
“This is the experience I want all of Scotland’s children to have, whether they want to grow up to be the next Tommy Smith or Nicola Benedetti or not.”