I’m honoured to be selected to contribute to the Participatory Creative Music Hub as a PCM Hub Open Call 2022-2023 grant award recipient. I will be documenting the framework I have developed for group music lessons (Kaleidoscope Music). Thank you to the Canadian New Music Network for this opportunity! PCM Hub’s Open Call 2022-2023 exists “to support documentation of an existing PCM project to provide inspiration and tools for user groups of the Hub to make their own music.”

I suggest checking out the other interesting and inspiring projects on PCM Hub. It’s awesome to see this kind of creative infrastructure being built so that we can connect and share experiences and ideas, and work together to increase the impact+acceleration of Participatory Creative Music projects.

Kaleidoscope Music is an online group music lesson framework that I have been developing since 2021. Over the past two years, I’ve used this framework to facilitate groups of children ages 6-14 learning voice, piano, and ukulele. I was inspired to create these groups after seeing for myself the long term effectiveness of learning through creative group music making. I’m especially excited by the socio-emotional and cognitive benefits that young musicians experience when participating in collaborative creative learning.

I’m very excited for this opportunity to share what I’ve learned, and to add to the wealth of resources already available within PCM Hub.

I have been continuing to develop this method with community music and social enterprise lenses in mind (or is that regeneration? transformative learning? lots of different ways to consider the power of making music together). I’m especially proud of this opportunity to provide a resource to be repurposed, learned from, and experimented with. I hope this documentation will create a ripple effect and inform efforts to create, expand, and innovate community music programs.

I’m particularly interested in ways that the framework could be adapted/adopted to serve rural and remote families and others with barriers to accessing music lessons, increase participation in extracurricular music through meaning-making in a convenient fun context, and create more opportunities for family involvement in music making.

You can help! Whether you’re familiar with what I’ve been doing are totally new to it, I’d love to hear from you.

When you think about group music making online or the idea of creative music lessons… what are you wondering, what are you puzzled by, what excites you? What questions and comments do you have? This will help inform and shape the documentation that I create, so that I can share what is most useful to others who would like to explore new ways to work and play musically.
Get in touch with your thoughts!

What is Participatory Creative Music?
“According to the Canadian New Music Network’s Public Engagement Committee, Participatory Creative Music is a multitude of approaches to creating music in which everyone involved, regardless of their prior experience in making music, has active input in the creative process. Authorship and decision-making is shared to greater or lesser degrees, depending on context.”

More about PCM Hub from their website:
“The Hub showcases people from all walks of life creating music together.  Whatever you call it — participatory creative music, community music, jamming, co-composition, improvisation, music exploration, listening games or having fun with sound — The Hub celebrates music creativity for everyone. Whether they are 4, 40 or 94 years of age, an experienced musician or making music for the first time — everyone has active input in the creative process.

The Hub sparks new inspiration through shared processes. Next time your group makes amazing music, share the process to the project catalogue, and check out other projects for new ideas while you’re at it. Walking into a new situation? Want to brush up on your skills? Check out Tips and Tools.

Creative music projects include those in schools, hospitals, long-term care facilities, social services and prisons, using materials as varied as playdough, stethoscopes, found objects, acoustic instruments, rock band instruments, field recorders and digital software.”