Friday 12 December 2014

Projects Including round up report for Chance for change 2007-10

Archive review

 Projects Including round up report for Chance for change 2007-10

The DJ School Association grew out of the DJ School project delivered and initiated in 2002, by community urban arts group Verbal Arts and core funded by Youth Music. The overwhelming success of this project led to the DJ School project’s expansion in 2004 seeing two more sessions join the original DJ School I hour session. Since the creation of the DJ School Association in 2005 the organisation has earned a reputation for delivering high quality music making opportunities, helping young people build self-esteem and confidence by teaching them the skills required to make a career from DJ-ing/Music Tech, MC-ing/Rap and theatre/performance  in a safe, fun and constructive environment. The project takes participants who are complete beginners and through ongoing support and guidance over a period of 3 twelve week terms each year encourages them to aspire to intermediate and advanced levels. Those who commit and gain advanced skills are provided opportunities, as part of the project, to perform in public at showcases and professional events in the community as well potential employment opportunities.                                                                            

The DJ School runs its main programe during term times. The first term begins in September and ends December, the second goes from January to April and the third term from May to July.                                                                                                                                              
All the participants start as beginners with an initial intake induction participants  can join at any time however everyone starts at beginners whenever they commence a the School.  This year’s intakes have been taught to set up, basic repair and look after to the equipment, to use the equipment safely and basic techniques of DJ-ing, performance, music tech etc. After twelve weeks whatever their start date they were accessed and then moved onto intermediates where they learned more advanced performance techniques and basic mixing, butts- changes etc. and composition in other words set construction. Again whatever date they began intermediates- say if this is half way through a term-they complete twelve weeks and then are assessed at which time they move on to advance and then various advance levels where they can specialize in specific areas such as scratching, beat matching etc.  Each twelve week block is made up of three workshops, two tutorials and three supervised rehearsals, one pre assessment, one assessment rehearsal and one assessment and one confidence building workshop. Also the organisation has set up various modules on the same lines with the same structure to cater for different aspects of the schools services such as Bo Produca for music technology, Urban Youth Theatre actor training, and Allstars pop star coaching. These modules are advertised and programmed separately. 


Urban Youth Theatre 
Urban Youth Theatre is a project formed by member of the DJ School who enjoys acting and performance.  The group was launched with help from professional actor Paul McLeay early this year and was able to set up with a Youth Opportunities Fund Grant and since then they have had a series of workshops and practical lessons to hone their skills with which they are hoping to be staging their first production in the new term. The Urban Youth Theatre group have six committed members and are actively seek others to join their group which meets every Tuesday night at the Urban Arts Centre.

Bo Produca 
Bo Produca is a music production project working with rappers, MC’s and singers to create professional quality music productions. The project is currently working with three young rappers and two female vocalists however in its short life, this year alone, the programme has worked with over 30 young musicians and vocalists and produced over five quality musical offerings.  Currently this programme is commercially funded and enabled through volunteers and private donations. 

AllStarz is another new programme offered by the organisation and is designed to ready young up and coming stars for the rigors of showbiz by improving confidence, stage presence and microphone skills. This year the project has worked with a number of young people auditioning for high profile television talent shows. Currently this programme is commercially funded and enabled through volunteers and private donations 

Kids Karnival
This poplar annual event was the brain child of the DJSAYSG (The DJ School Association Young Peoples’ Steering Group) the idea was to stage a number event throughout the summer months for younger children. Last year was the first attempt by the DJSAYSG at the events which was funded by Awards for All Grant and a part from disappointing weather the events went well. This year the Steering Group plan a bigger and better event which doubles as an opportunity to showcase their DJ-ing, MC-ing and Singing talents.

Adult Music Group (Skills to Earn) 
This group was established by popular demand as many adults made numerous enquire about music lessons for themselves. Due to this overwhelming need the DJ School bid for and won an NDLC Grant. The group has over 24 members attending regularly on a Monday nights, Wednesday afternoon and Thursday evening. They are currently working on a music sound track and towards a number of performances. 

Chance for Change Overview of project

The course has been facilitated to provide beginners to the art of performance the skill needed to pursue the art form at further Ed level as a hobby or otherwise.


Confidence building classes including role play
Learner embraces some with difficulty the promise of public speaking in order to convey a message.
Learners took part in issue based role play based on issues that affect themselves. Learners embrace the freedom of expressing view in a comfortable safe environment.
Learners took part in movement and space workshops
Learner participated in improvisation techniques and transfer to like skill workshop

Employment and wellbeing in society.
Learners were encouraged to develop a work plan and develop their individual talents through personal development workshops. Each participant developed a plan for the next 6 months.

Planning a budget.

Learners were taught the rudimentary skills to create and develop a budget in line with a proposed performance.

 Produce a short piece drama for local audiences.

Learner have developed a series of scripted performances and created a short film for local public release which is in the final phase of editing.

The course guides artists through the stages require allowing themselves to pursue an effective career in their chosen art form.


Role in the community and creating a persona

Learners learnt about the differences between one’s personal image and methods of managing a professional persona for personal and business needs
Learners explore methods of discussing their art work in the third person and the importance of supporting other artist who they collaborate with effectively.
Learners explored how to deal with wanted and unwanted attention thrown up by ones Art work

Setting up in business as a community artist

Artists were guided through the facets of setting up in business and preparing stationary i.e. business cards, invoices and preparing accounts learners were given a list of helpful number regarding preparing tax returns  etc.

Preparing the product& Personal development skills and managing own workload

Learners explored the role of quality and planning in creating a product.
Learners explored different types of product that can be created to expose talents of the learners.
Learners understand the role collaboration to order to conclude and finish a product to marketing stage
Learners created a set of work that supports their aim as learners in the capacity becoming artists

Marketing the product for public appeal

Learners took part in workshops which enabled learners to plan and implement an effective marketing campaign

Public presentation
Learners developed personal presentation to show to a small audience the work they have created -, last ones planned for the end of July

The project had been well received and input from clients was encouraging. Through consultation with our clients we found there wanted more access to computers and the music studio, opportunities for public performers for more established artists. We did this by creating a multimedia suite, opening up session times to make allowance for individual learners to expand their work for preparation for their work timetabled sessions. Most regrettable comments were was regarding the building and the delivery rooms, it was felt there were too cold in the winter. This has been improved by installing heaters in the class rooms.
A number of learners felt that the quality of learning was inspirational and creative and the extra support which was offered was effective. A few of the learners felt they would benefit form a digitalised music catalogue.


We have improved the access times – Longer opening times
Need for more contact- Opened up contact time and provided extra support for individuals
Developed links with other support charities in order to offer a more substantial approach
Designed and developed a cost effective way of heating classrooms in preparation for sessions to be delivered.
Managed to get more learners involved with planning for the future beyond July.

We are still struggling in the follow ups after 6 months and 12 months people do not seen to be replying and also the cost is quite considerable for those learners who wavier and tend to go off radar due to personal illness etc.  this area has much room for improvement. Staffing levels after July end date are not sustainable therefore it is more difficult to follow learners on the extent we as an organisation want to.

How well did Learner achieve and enjoy their learning?

This graph represented number of individuals who enrolled, attended achieved and passes a both programmes.

             Those learners who achieved are individual who took part created artwork and demonstrated an improvement in personal develop and showed and presented to a small group and completed all tasks the learner register reflect the frequency of attendance. However learner are provided with six week plans and only move forward when they have completed the work plan set down at review date. This element has proved to be effective and provides tutors and learner the ability to adapt according to circumstances be it course related or personal.
             Learners who Passed who past are learners that completed all the tasks set down on their six weekly rolling plans, but due to unforeseen circumstances were unable to complete the final presentations.


Attendance throughout the programme fluctuated but learners managed to sustain a flow and caught up and some developed coping strategies to deal with a short period of absence due to illness and addiction problems.

Feedback from learners overall encouraging and feedback on teaching was good


Jaidev birk; stated “he has enjoyed, and stated Gary is excellent and I really enjoyed his teaching” 

Latir Thakur stated “yes” he enjoyed the sessions and wanted to learn how to make “more original music” and felt we needed “to invest in new equipment”

Notes on our learners

Drama- The learners who have experienced the drama course created and performed small monologues to camera those who did not took part to writing the script , filming and editing.  Workshops were run covering all aspects Evidence can be found in the

Community Arts

All learners have developed their work to a stage where they can action in real life. They have been provided with the transferable skills to help
In their transition from emerging artist –artist.
Please find examples of work enclosed in the pack highlighting the inspiration and excellent quality produced by learners who attend the course.

N.b All learners engage in basic skill test which involves and personal interaction element to assess the compatibility of individual learners and their ability to work in a group.

Learners give efficient input us regarding these, matters and are overall respondent to this type of assessment.