Maisy Neale

Big Month of Music Young Ambassador


Please tell us about your music education

I play clarinet as my main instrument, but I also play saxophone and guitar. I began learning the clarinet aged six, the music shop owner said that I was too small, so of course I determinedly sought to prove him wrong! I learnt privately as I was home educated so was not introduced to music through school. I attended Birmingham music workshops and DPA groups from 11 and interacted with people whose lives revolved around music; I think this is what inspired me to want a career in music. After being lucky enough to study under CBSO Clarinettist Jo Patton for three years I now go to Royal Birmingham Conservatoire which is a dream come true!



How did your Music Service support you with your music education

I joined Dudley Performing Art’s Wind Band when I was 11, I’d never played in a group before and it really built my confidence and ensemble skills from the start. Until this year I was playing with DPA groups and it really allowed me to grow as a musician, in Big Band we performed for several years at Upton Jazz Festival which was incredible, the Wind Band gave me my first experience of travelling to a foreign country (we got to play at Disneyland!!) and with orchestra we got to play at Maida Vale studios, side by side with the BBC Symphony Orchestra.


What are you doing now?

I am in my first year at Royal Birmingham Conservatoire studying for a degree in music!

Why is music education important?

Without music education learning an instrument can be expensive, concerts can seem inaccessible and classical music will slowly seem less and less relevant to children and young people. Without music education classical music becomes elitist.


However, the opportunities given to children and young people within schools and music services are what can overcome these barriers and allow every child to be able to access some sort of music.  In my opinion, music should be just as core to learning as reading and numeracy, it can transform lives and without music the world would be incredibly dull!