Access and inclusion

Supporting deaf people and those with hearing loss

In 2023, Paul Whittaker spoke to our members at two events about how groups could support instrumentalists and singers with hearing loss to take part in music-making. This resource covers the good practice suggested by Paul and members that attended those events, for any music-making group working to include deaf people and people with hearing loss in their regular activity.  

Conversations about inclusion: Music and Autism (online event)

To fully include everyone in our music activities, we need to understand the barriers that stop people from attending, taking part or progressing. In the Conversation about inclusion series of events, hear about the issues from the perspective of those who directly experience barriers and discuss what we can do to change things from within our own music groups.


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In the summer edition of Highnotes: we explore how groups can adapt to and implement change, and what Making Music can do to support them in the process. Will Prideux, Director of Peterborough Sings! talks about Peterborough Male Voice Choir’s work supporting project-based recruitment. We also discuss the second report from the Big Survey 2022, focusing on the financial contributions the leisure-time music sector makes to professionals.  

Welcome new people: building diversity and inclusion (online event)

If you’d like your group and your audience to be more diverse and inclusive, thinking about how you recruit and welcome people is crucial. And if you want to increase your membership and your audiences, recruiting and welcoming new people in a way that is inclusive means you’ve more chance of success. Whatever your driver, there are actions you can take that will remove the barriers to joining your activity and provide access to more people. 


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Case study: Diversifying repertoire with the Sheffield Philharmonic Orchestra

Sophie Anderson, Publicity Officer of Sheffield Philharmonic Orchestra (SPO) tells us how the orchestra has managed to successfully diversify its repertoire.


Formed in 1945, the SPO is Sheffield’s oldest leisure-time orchestra, with over 80 members from across the Sheffield city region and beyond. We endeavour to present high-quality, well-attended concerts that engage regular concert-goers, and actively seek to increase exposure to classical music by working with the local community.

Online member meetup (Wales)

Running your group is a rewarding but challenging role. Our regular meetups are a chance for you to meet and share learning and ideas with other Wales groups facing similar challenges, explore specific issues affecting leisure-time music making in Wales and consider how we can work collaboratively to find solutions and advocate for the sector. 

Stephen McNally, Wales manager, will be leading this session.

N.B. this event was originally scheduled to take place on 24th January but will now be taking place on 31 January.

In this meetup we'll:


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Glossary of LGBTQ+ terms

There are many terms related to LGBTQ+ issues and it might seem overwhelming at first. But fret not - this glossary should help you better understand your LGBTQ+ members as you work on getting your music group to be more diverse and welcoming.

Working with transgender singers

Working with transgender singers in your music group might be a new experience, but breaking it down into smaller steps would better enable you to support your transgender members on their music making journey.

In practical terms, much of the guidance from our LGBTQ+ inclusion guide is applicable when working with transgender singers. This guide, written by Dr Kathleen Cronie and Dr Michael Bonshor, will provide some extra information about the following questions:

LGBTQ+ inclusion guide

Sometimes LGBTQ+ people encounter barriers to getting involved in music making, but by making some simple adjustments to your practice you can work towards creating a more inclusive environment where they can thrive in your group.

Webinar: INCLUDE programme launch

In this recording of our webinar (original event 25 September 2023), Making Music launched INCLUDE, our 18-month inclusion programme where we will work with four member groups to explore what leisure-time music groups can do to include more people, from a more diverse demographic, in their regular activities.