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Surrey Arts lessons moved online during lockdown

A new year and another lockdown! Before the end of last term, the Surrey Arts team had been working really hard programming in lessons but the latest lockdown has meant many lessons due to take place in schools will now be changed. Fortunately the online learning platform Surrey Arts introduced in April last year is available and there are many advantages to continuing to learn in this way.

Here are some of the reasons why the Surrey Arts online teaching can be really beneficial:

  • Musical activity and learning is a big boost for well-being, especially during the winter months
  • By moving online, your child’s musical learning won’t be interrupted, so they will continue to progress
  • Our teachers now have a lot of experience teaching online and can help children and parents/ carers with any concerns and we also offer a technical support phone line for parents/carers experiencing technical difficulties
  • Many students and parents/ carers have told us that the online lessons have helped them to become better players and more secure in their own learning
  • Music lessons are a great brain break for children during a day of school work
  • Parents/ carers have told us that they enjoy being able to hear what their children are doing in their music lessons
  • Children enjoy seeing their teacher online. In paired lessons they also get a chance to see their friends.

Surrey Arts have received many positive comments from parents who have seen the benefits of having online lessons during the lockdowns:

‘The online lessons have helped give structure to our weeks and have meant that the children have continued to make progress with their music. Having a weekly lesson has meant that they have continued to practise – it would be too easy for them to just drift away from practising if there had been no lessons.’

‘It has been brilliant to continue lessons during the “lockdown”, and my child has progressed as a result. Practicing without the incentive of lessons was hard so it was great to do zoom lessons.’

There are also many links to Surrey Arts online teaching and introduction to instruments on the Surrey Music Hub website Online Learning – Surrey Music Hub

Surrey Arts launch Online Instrumental Lessons!

Surrey Arts is excited to launch a new Online Learning Programme offering high quality instrumental lessons from the comfort of your home! Over the past few weeks we have been busy trialling online teaching, and establishing safeguarding protocols and technical guidance to ensure we are able to offer the same high quality learning experience that our students receive through face-to-face lessons. 

We are pleased that we are also able to support our more vulnerable young people through our inclusion programme, offering free lessons to groups such as looked after children, young carers and unaccompanied refugees.

Sarah Lee, Head of Service, said ‘This has been an amazing effort by the Surrey Arts team. To be able to put together a programme at such an uncertain time and develop a programme that ensures high quality and a safe learning environment for students is fantastic. We all know the power that music can have on our lives, and engaging in creativity during this time can really help with health and well-being. We hope that our online learning programme will be a valuable service for the Surrey community encouraging people to continue making music and engaging in arts activities.’

At present the Surrey Arts Online Learning (SAOL) programme is only available for existing Surrey Artsstudents: however, we hope to grow this further in the coming weeks, providing more ways in which to support musical learning.

Together with our Online Learning Programme we have also created an extensive online resource page with lots of videos, activities, online music performances and much more!

Finally, the visual arts team have worked with Surrey Artists Open Studios and Surrey Hills Arts to provide a range of online art workshops for artists of all abilities and ages. SAOS artists have also provided online tours of their studios and have been part of the Sketchbook Challenge where they have shared their sketchbook works.

These are unique times and it is great to see so many talented people working together to ensure learning and creativity continues in Surrey!

Online Lessons

Surrey Arts Online Learning

Surrey Arts has introduced an online learning programme – Surrey Arts Online Learning. This exciting programme brings music lessons straight to your home.

Surrey Arts Interactive with Charanga

Surrey Arts Interactive/Charanga is a website which offers online resources for children learning an instrument.  We currently have resources available for beginner to grade 1 on most of the instruments we teach, and up to grade 5 for flute, alto sax, clarinet, trumpet and violin.  You will need a log in for your child to access these.  If you would like to do so, please complete the form below and a log in will be emailed to you.

General Videos

BBC Masterclasses and Live Lessons

ABRSM  The ABRSM is the exam board of the Royal Schools of Music, delivering over 650,000 music exams and assessments every year in 93 countries. Their website and YouTube channel contain exam support, syllabuses, and free online learning resources in their “Play On” programme.

ABRSM YouTube Channel  Exam prep, learning videos and syllabus videos for woodwind, strings, brass, percussion, piano, guitar and voice.

Trinity College Music Exams Every year Trinity College London supports the music education of thousands of students with assessments across classical, jazz and rock & pop music. Their website and YouTube channel contain exam support and learning resources for students.

Trinity College YouTube Channel  Exam prep and learning videos for woodwind, strings, brass, percussion, piano, guitar and voice.

Trinity Rock and Pop YouTube Channel Exam prep and learning videos for contemporary music instruments and music tech.

RockSchool – RSL Awards Exams, method books, YouTube tutorials

RockSchool YouTube Channel  Exam prep and learning videos for contemporary music instruments and music tech.

Academy of Contemporary Music  ACM is a specialist provider of creative industries education. Students including performers, producers, songwriters, technicians, and games developers are taught by established creative industry professionals.

ACM YouTube Channel  Videos and masterclasses for contemporary music instruments and music tech.

School’s Brochure 2022-23

“I am delighted to launch our comprehensive menu of services for schools for the period July 2022 to July 2023.

If you want music to make a difference in your school, take a look at how Surrey Music Hub can help or contact Surrey Arts to discuss anything that isn’t covered by those services.

We are passionate about the impact that the arts have on young people’s lives and believe that creative engagement has a place in every school. We hope that we can work together with you to give your young people the highest quality music and arts education.

All of our services are flexible and can be tailored to fit within your setting. They are also Covid safe, and can be delivered online with Surrey County Council safety requirements.

I would encourage you to visit our website and to make use of the programme of CPD and other opportunities we are creating for you. Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or other requirements as we are always happy to meet with school leaders to discuss how best to meet your individual needs.”

Sarah Lee
Head of Surrey Arts


For children

Most of our lessons take place in Surrey schools, and can take place during or after school hours, for individuals or small groups depending on tutor and classroom availability.

Contact Surrey Arts to see what is available near you.

Music lessons include brass (trombone, trumpet, tuba, cornet, French horn, flugelhorn), strings (violin, viola, cello, double bass), woodwind (recorder, clarinet, flute, saxophone, oboe), piano, keyboard, percussion, drums, guitar and more.

Our expert tutors help 15,000 young people in Surrey to learn to sing and play all sorts of different musical instruments by visiting schools to give one-to-one or small group instrumental lessons. Your child can too! We’re going to be developing the range of instruments on offer too, over time.

Contact your school to find out what’s on offer, or contact us if you have any further queries or feedback.

Types of lessons

School curriculum

Surrey Arts offer support to schools to provide whole classs tuition for Key Stage 1 providing instruments and online learning. This is available through government funding.

Extra curricular

Lessons are also available during and after school hours for individual and small group tuition but is dependant on tutor and classroom availability.

Early years and pre-school

Making music is great fun so get started early!


Surrey Arts and Stringbabies Ltd. have come together to offer Surrey’s schools and young children a fun way to learn stringed instruments. Currently, in a number of schools in the county, the programme is available county-wide for children between 3 and 7 years.


There are many opportunities for children and young people in Surrey to get involved in playing music (UP! Orchestra) and singing (Just So Singers).


School workshops

During the school year tutors from Surrey Arts visit many schools across the county to host workshops to encourage young people to learn a musical instrument. These workshops cover the variety of music families from strings, woodwind, percussion, guitar, brass, piano and keyboard.

Instrument courses and workshops

Throughout the year there are courses and workshops that invite some of the world’s leading musicians to give master classes and perform giving students the opportunity to develop their playing techniques.

Guitar workshops

Currently there are two Saturday morning guitar workshops in Leatherhead and Woking which are a group collaboration for young musicians wanting to learn the guitar and create music. The workshops are an ideal starting point for any child wanting to learn the guitar prior to having lessons with little or no experience.

For adults

It’s not too late to learn. Surrey Arts offers music classes at adult learning centres and caters for a wide range of abilities.


Many adults wished they had learnt to play a musical instrument at school. Surrey Arts offers opportunties for adults to learn in groups (piano, guitar, singing, opera appreciation) or individual lessons in orchestral instruments, piano and guitar.


Full list of adult music courses
(including times, venues and prices)

Surrey Arts also offer adult instrumentalists the opportunity to join ensembles.

Ensembles & Groups

Joining a group or ensemble is a great way to develop your learning and perform with other musicians and in front of audiences. There are over 50 performing ensembles in Surrey for beginners and the experienced musician both youth and adults. These include area and county ensembles as well as youth and adult choirs.

Our music groups offer young people a chance to rehearse and perform with others, make new friends and improve their playing. Groups and ensembles rehearse once a week, and perform a number of times each year in schools and professional venues.

Local groups can also be found in at the Surrey Arts’ Ensembles Page or our partner Making Music’s website.

Area ensembles
County ensembles

These groups and ensembles rehearse once a week and give regular concerts, performing a number of times each year in schools and professional venues. Many also go on overseas concert tours.

Guildford Sinfonia
Woking Wind Orchestra

Surrey Arts provides two ensembles for experienced adult musician.
Apply online.
Together at Home for SEND
Together at Home for Arabic Speaking Children

Two online music ensembles – TAH for SEND is for young people aged 9 to 19 who attend Special Schools in Surrey.
TAH for Arabic Speaking Children is for young people aged 8 – 18 whose first language is Arabic.
Singing groups

For young vocalists there is the Surrey County Youth Orchestra and Youth Training Choirs as well as choirs for children with SEND. There are also choirs for carers as well as many community choirs across the county.
I Speak Music

A new project launched by Surrey Music Hub to bring together professionals who work with, or have an interest in supporting newly arrived and vulnerable young people (for example, young asylum seekers, young refugees, young people who have been trafficked to UK) through the arts and music.
Easter Music Course

Running for over 40 years, dates for next year’s Easter Music Course will be available in February.
Workshops & Masterclasses

A chance to learn from some of the best musicians in the country or try an instrument in a short workshop.
Music Courses and Workshops in the Holidays

Including orchestra taster workshops, singing workshops, guitar workshops and more.
Saturday Music Zone

A day of music opportunities in Leatherhead for all abilities – guitar workshop, DJ workshop and UP! Orchestra

UPDATED DATES Join the Royal Opera House for Create and Sing, Surrey Music Hub 2021

Due to the current lockdown some of the online training dates for Create and Sing have been changed.

Join the Royal Opera House for a two-part virtual CPD training course exploring our Create and Sing creative learning programme (KS1-KS3). Our specialist ROH drama and music practitioners introduce the programme, pedagogy and resources and guide teachers through effective approaches to supporting students’ creative learning by exploring opera.

Create and Sing is an innovative drama and singing programme supporting young people’s creative learning and giving voice to their creativity. Our nationally and freely available teacher training and resources engage schools in a creative process leading towards creating opera in the classroom. Teachers are not required to have specialist music training as our free certified training and unique online resources help guide them through the programme every step of the way.

Watch our video here to hear what teachers say about the programme.

Create and Sing’s Covid-19 adaptations

Due to the current lockdown, the Royal Opera House have had to revise the CPD schedule, moving dates to the end of this term and the start of next. Please note if you had previously booked onto a CPD the dates may have changed (more details below). Only one Surrey date has changed, but the online Surrey sessions will also be opened up to other schools nationally.

Create and Sing has adapted this year, with training taking place through virtual twilight sessions and schools projects starting in the summer or beyond. Create and Sing virtual training brings teachers together to explore, learn, share and have some fun during this difficult time of separation.

With many schools facing curriculum time pressures but also looking for a special, engaging and rewarding project for the summer, the training focuses on our Explorer (5-week lesson plan) schemes of work. These lead teachers and students through creative learning programmes with a range of curriculum links. Teachers do not need to commit to running a school project this summer to attend the training; all are welcome.

To Register…

Create and Sing works with partner organisations to bring teachers in local areas together for training. Where possible we ask teachers book on to their area training dates, but if you are unable to make these, there are also nationally open dates below. Places are free, booked via Eventbrite and allocated on a first come first served basis:

Surrey Music Hub dates

Create and Sing Carmen part 1

18/03/2021 16:30 – 18:30

Create and Sing Carmen part 2

21/04/2021 16:30 – 18:30

National training dates

Create and Sing Hansel & Gretel part 1

17/03/2021 16:00-18:00

Create and Sing Hansel & Gretel part 2

29/03/2021 16:00-18:00

Create and Sing Carmen part 1

18/03/2021 16:30-18:30

Create and Sing Carmen part 2

21/04/2021 16:30-18:30

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