Adopt-a-Player, the Hallé’s flagship education project, embraces a philosophy to music education and the arts which is based on establishing long-term relationships and encouraging direct interaction between professional musicians, young people, teachers, community leaders and parents.

The project has been conceived to introduce children, mainly from inner-city primary schools, to the Hallé by offering them the opportunity to attend Hallé concerts at The Bridgewater Hall. For many of the children this will be their first experience of attending a concert and visiting the Hall, which is one of the UK’s finest music venues. Adopt-a-Player takes place each term within one of the ten Greater Manchester boroughs, involving students from a high school and three of its feeder primaries, focusing on establishing closer connections between the schools and encouraging the continuation of music during the transition from primary to secondary education.

The project provides the opportunity for pupils to work alongside a Hallé musician to create their own version of a piece they will hear at the Hallé concert. Each school will be visited several times by its ‘adopted’ player who also welcomes them to The Bridgewater Hall on their visit. At the end of the process there is a culmination when all the schools congregate at the participating high school to share their compositions and perform to an audience of families and friends with interludes by the quartet of adopted Hallé musicians. The concert is opened by an ensemble from the high school, giving the primary school pupils a glimpse of the various opportunities on offer when they leave primary education.

Hallé musicians are occasionally accompanied by pupils from the Royal Northern College of Music’s String Leadership Training Scheme and the University of Manchester.

Hallé Education also runs smaller Adopt-a-Player projects called Meet-a-Musician ideal for individual school classes. Read more about the project here.

Adopt-a-Player is generously supported by the Manchester Airport Group.

Adopt-a-Player Autumn 2017

In October and November, schools from Heywood in Rochdale created a showcase of their own version of Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition. Each school created their take on one of the pictures and promenades from the piece, each school taking a completely unique approach, incorporating both classroom percussion and the pupils’ own instruments to perform alongside their adopted players. The culmination was hosted by Holy Family RC and CE College who opened the evening with a performance from the Holy Family College Singers. Each school then performed their own compositions, linked together by interludes from an octet of Hallé musicians.

We were fortunate to be joined by four players from the RNCM’s String Leadership Training Scheme who each accompanied a musician to the workshops. Rochdale’s adopted musicians were: Andy Maher (French horn), Hannah Smith (violin), Jinny Shaw (oboe), Roz Davies (trombone), Emma Oldfield (violin), Kathryn Rigby (violin), Morag Robertson (viola) and Rachel Morton (‘cello).

Our next project in spring will involve schools from Wigan who will be creating their own rendition of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 3, ‘Eroica’.

Previous projects have involved schools from Oldham and Bury, exploring Tchaikovsky’s masterful fifth symphony and Smetana’s epic symphonic poem, Vltava.

Contact us

For more information on Adopt-a-Player or any other Education projects, please contact the Education team on

Photographs and videos may be taken at these events. Some of this material may be used for promotional purposes and the Hallé asks all schools to seek the relevant consent and permissions.

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