Exchanging Notes – From South London to the Pyramid Stage

Written by Priya Suman

Tags: Glastonbury Music

Whether it’s protecting the planet or challenges to social mobility for young people, music has always been a great platform for highlighting issues people care about. We saw examples of this on the main stage at Glastonbury this year, with appearances from Sir David Attenborough and Stormzy.

During Stormzy’s performance, as the first British black male solo artist to headline Glastonbury, he played a speech by Labour MP David Lammy deploring the challenges that face black, Asian and minority people in the UK.

National music charity Youth Music knows just how life changing a creative outlet can be for young people living in disadvantaged communities across England.

Last month, we worked with Youth Music to build a campaign that provoked debate. The campaign was centred around four years of research, culminating in a report called Exchanging Notes. It found that giving young people the freedom to create the music they want in schools can actually help them shine in other subjects.

We achieved widespread coverage, calling for the music curriculum to exchange Mozart for Stormzy, with a letter addressed to the Department for Education. Our campaign caught the attention of Stormzy himself and resulted in a bespoke grime performance, with a live orchestra on Good Morning Britain. Not to mention 260 pieces of coverage. All in day’s work (maybe a few more than just one!)

As Youth Music turns 20 this year, it’s calling for more support and donations so that it can reach the lives of more young people. At present, it can only fund 40% of the projects that apply for funding. With youth clubs closing and knife crime reaching an unprecedented level, funding cuts to young people’s services has become the soundtrack to young people’s lives.

By harnessing the transformative effect of music, we can do better for younger people and by doing so, we can ensure the next Stormzy doesn’t feel like the Pyramid Stage is too far away.

The future of payment – the revolution of mobility technology

Phasing out petrol and diesel cars and introducing EVs is a great option in...

More information

Claire Brady on Net Zero Hero Podcast

Some people think that ‘circularity’ simply means recycling, but it is so much more...

More information

Earth Day

Earth Day provides an opportunity to take stock of our progress towards addressing the...

More information

When it comes to making sustainability claims, getting it wrong can cost organisations the earth

According to Robin Hicks, “2022 was the year that policymakers started to take greenwashing...

More information

Less is more: How low alcohol brands are targeting their Gen Z consumers

Dry January may be over, but giving up alcohol definitely hasn’t gone out of...

More information

Beyond B Corp: Breaking up with Barclays 

Last year we became a certified B Corp, and to do so we had...

More information

Three takeaways from the IPCC’s ‘final warning’ report 

This week has seen the release of the latest IPCC report assessing the climate...

More information

Why we’ve introduced a 4.5 day working week

As the rulebook of the working week gets rewritten, at Stand we continue to...

More information

Stand shifts as we move into our second decade

I founded Stand with one simple (but typically ambitious) belief: that good comms can...

More information

So… has the pandemic set us back or propelled us forward?

Last week, just days after the restrictions in England were lifted, we hosted our...

More information

Wellbeing is not a one-size-fits-all approach

It’s safe to say that being plunged into multiple lockdowns across the past 18...

More information

Covid-19 has given us a harsh lesson in education inequality

Although ‘Freedom Day’ is here, Covid’s effects will, as we hear all too often,...

More information

The pandemic of inequalities

Last week, the Health Foundation’s Unequal pandemic, fairer recovery report made headlines, revealing that...

More information

Has the pandemic set us back 50 years, or will it propel us forward?

At its onset, Covid-19 was described as the great leveller. But the pandemic has...

More information

Pride 2021: Tokenistic campaigns just won’t fly anymore

June is Pride Month, a time for celebrating the diverse accomplishments, identities, and members...

More information