Building new audiences

Reaching close to 10,000 young people a year, CAVATINA Chamber Music Trust is helping to build the next generation of audiences for chamber music, explains Thomas Hancox

Founded in 1998 with the aim of developing the next generation of chamber music lovers and players, the charity CAVATINA Chamber Music Trust exists to bring chamber music to young people, and young people to chamber music.

To this end its work is divided into two broad channels: on the one hand is a series of highly engaging school concerts and workshops delivered by experienced and celebrated ensembles, introducing and hopefully developing an appetite for chamber music amongst the pupils encountered; on the other is a subsidy programme – known as the Ticket Scheme – that works with a variety of concert promoters to cover the costs of admitting young people to chamber music concerts, so that they can access professional music-making without charge.

The Ticket Scheme currently has around forty members, comprising a variety of music clubs, festivals, and concert venues, reaching throughout England, Wales, and Scotland. Each member receives a subsidy of £7.50 for each young person (8 to 25 years old, inclusive) they admit without charge to a chamber music concert – defined as instrumental duos to nonets performing classical music without a conductor. Each member is asked to take out corporate friendship with CAVATINA (£100 per year) by way of signalling a reciprocal belief in the cause of introducing young people to this rich tradition, with the vast majority of members receiving this sum returned several times over in subsidy.

Furthermore, if one of the ensembles that CAVATINA works with is engaged to perform by a member of the Ticket Scheme, CAVATINA will pay for a visit to a local state school (or cover half of the fees for a visit to an independent school) to tie in with the public performance. Beyond the immediate educational purpose of such a school concert, it is hoped that such links between local schools and members of the Ticket Scheme will help develop and sustain the next generation of their audiences.

Though these two principal strands – school concerts and the Ticket Scheme – constitute the backbone of CAVATINA’s work, they are not the extent of its endeavours. Other projects include a series of family concerts that seek to introduce young children – and their parents – to chamber music, whilst CAVATINA’s annual intercollegiate chamber music competition, held at the Royal Academy of Music, acts as a competitive showcase for some of the very best young ensembles that are coming to the fore.

Originally the philanthropic vision of Simon and Pamela Majaro, CAVATINA is now sustained through the kindness of a network of friends and the generosity of several sponsors.

To find out more about its work – whether as a potential supporter, an interested school, or as prospective member of the Ticket Scheme – visit or e-mail