Scottish Chamber Orchestra announces Baillie Gifford as its Creative Learning Partner

Baillie Gifford will support the Orchestra’s pioneering community and education programmes in Edinburgh and right across Scotland.


From April 2019, thanks to the new five year investment of Creative Learning Partner, Baillie Gifford, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra is able to extend the reach and diversity of this important work. Participants build self-belief and confidence, take creative risks, develop empathy and tolerance, and feel their voices are heard, as well as developing a greater understanding and appreciation of music. 

Sam Pattman, Sponsorship Manager for Baillie Gifford said, 

“As a proud sponsor of the arts, time and time again we have seen the benefits of programmes that have a strong focus on community engagement. This is just one of the reasons why we are proud to be SCO’s Creative Learning Partner. This ambitious five-year programme aims to reach communities across Scotland and we look forward to seeing the impact it has.”

SCO Creative Learning Director Kirsteen Davidson Kelly explains,

“We regularly witness the many ways in which high quality musical activity enriches people’s lives, in all sorts of contexts. Thanks to this investment from Baillie Gifford, we can extend our reach and realise further potential for positive social change, improve people’s well-being and raise aspirations for young people.”

Look out for further news next week when the Scottish Chamber Orchestra launches its 2019/20 Season on Tuesday 12th March.

Further information about the projects:

Scottish Chamber Orchestra launches NEW VIBE: an innovative orchestra project delivered by the SCO in collaboration with the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) and the University of Edinburgh’s Museums Services.

NEW VIBE will provide a targeted opportunity for cultural prescription which supports young people with mental health problems, aiming to help them cope better with what life throws at them.

Thanks to the support of Baillie Gifford, this new project will provide a safe space for young people who have an interest in any style of music, including classical, folk, rock and pop. During the project, participants will develop and record music with the support of the SCO team and peer mentors. 

This new investment from Baillie Gifford also enables the SCO to expand its Community Residency in Wester Hailes and run free, creative music projects at all schools, alongside family events and projects for adults in partnership with local charities. It will also support local residents to visit the SCO’s concerts in the city centre free of charge.

The SCO’s already highly regarded music education programme will be enhanced thanks to Baillie Gifford with its flagship ‘Masterworks’ programme for upper secondary schools in all 32 Local Authorities in Scotland on a three-year rolling basis. Exploring a performance with an expert guide, some of the greatest classical music has been revealed through ‘Masterworks’ in what The Herald described as “premier league music education and top drawer performance in indivisible alliance”.

School teacher feedback from 2018 includes:

“I feel that the SCO are definitely leading the way. I have found they have the most to offer School Pupils at this stage [upper secondary] and especially with well thought out curricular links. Great job and one to highly commend!” 

- Teacher, Renfrew High School

“I have been taking pupils to the Masterworks concerts since their inception and think they are incredibly informative, high quality, well presented and exceptionally well put together in a meaningful manner – so they can be accessed by all pupils.”

- Teacher, Islay High School, Argyll and Bute

Alongside this, newly produced digital resources will also open up the opportunity of ‘Masterworks’ so even more schools can benefit from the programme each year.

Baillie Gifford’s support also enables the Scottish Chamber Orchestra to continue its pioneering Youth Academy, in partnership with St Mary’s Music School.


David Taylor