New workshops available

February 19th, 2016

Local Found Folk and Musical Interaction are two new workshops available for schools, heritage venues and festivals.

Each workshop are facilitated by excellent practitioners and can be tailored to your needs. Click here for more details.

Firebird Trust is Changing

July 29th, 2014

What does Firebird actually do?

The redefined mission of the Firebird Trust is to

  • help communities through innovative music and performance / creative projects
  • support growing the economic opportunity for community projects for both communities and artists
  • support artists develop as community artists both through their projects and collaborationCommunity / Innovation / Development / Collaborative Learning

    Community is defined as a “group of people who have a common link and a common benefit.”

    The Firebird difference

  • No project happens without collective learning for both the communities and artists
  • We try out new ideas for community projects and look for new ways these can be further developed and used elsewhere

We want Firebird to become a “club” that artists will want to belong to.

The “club” will offer – creative control, development of personal projects, professional development, paid work and to those who want it ownership and control of the direction of Firebird.

Firebird would want dissemination of learning, a distinctive quality of delivery, artists to promote Firebird and recommend others to join.

Frances Watt

Freelance project management and business development on Komposit and Folk Hub

Tel: 07747 671352     Email:

Looked After Children case study. Strut House.

May 13th, 2013

Firebird Trust’s latest Looked after Children case study for Strut House, Lincolnshire.

Learn about Firebird’s care in the community and download the latest case study for the Lincolnshire County Council funded Looked after Children project. LAC Strut House Case Study.

Positive outcomes for staff and residents within Looked after Children homes in Lincolnshire.

Positive outcomes for staff and residents within Looked after Children homes in Lincolnshire.

Teaching Languages through Music – Pilot Workshop

March 27th, 2013

Teaching Languages through Music. Education workshops to support the National Curriculum in primary and secondary education.

Firebird Trust and creative team member Rikki Thomas Martinez undertook the first pilot session from our range of education workshops. We were invited to deliver the session at Nottingham Girls Academy and they were particularly keen to be involved in our ‘Languages through Music’ session. Rikki is tri-lingual and is fluent in English, Spanish and French.  Music with lyrics engages both sides of the brain so becomes a powerful learning tool. Firebird harness this power to support various topics within the national curriculum and deliver these projects within primary and secondary educational settings. Find out more about our education workshops here.

Firebird Trust project manage multi-arts based project in Looked after Children Homes

February 1st, 2013

Firebird Trust manage multi-faceted arts project in Looked after Children homes across Lincolnshire

Roll up, roll up! Resident at Strut - Lincoln has fun at Circus themed workshop

Roll up, roll up! Resident at Strut – Lincoln has fun at Circus themed workshop

The Firebird Trust and creative team member, Liam Robinson have been project managing an arts development project within Lincolnshire’s Looked after Children’s homes. This is a contract funded by Lincolnshire County Council.  Working with a number of skilled artists and performers, Liam is delivering a diverse range of activities designed to increase the confidence and wellbeing of the homes’ young residents.

Firebird Trust and the arts providers have been engaging participants in activities that they wouldn’t normally have access to. Activities are currently being delivered in 6 Looked after Children’s homes. In three houses, residents have learning or physical disabilities and these sessions encourage positive behaviour and stimulate their senses, giving them a break from their usual routines. The other 3 homes are all mainstream residencies and activities within these houses are designed to create a cohesive atmosphere whilst building confidence and new skills. Liam and the arts providers have worked with each home to understand their needs and to create sessions that will not only engage the residents but staff too.

In one residency, Oksana Tyminska has delivered dance sessions to 6 boys who took part in varying levels. She used music and performance art to engage participants. One session evolved into a pantomime performance at the request of one of the residents. Oksana explains ‘The staff were really active and joining in not only with the boys but also for themselves which was really positive. They enjoyed the music and the physical exploration with the boys. It was quite rough and tumble and they felt this was good for the boys. The staff were inspired by the props and were discussing buying and implementing some of the ideas themselves.

Mosaic artist – Fiona Gurney has been encouraging residents to explore their creativity by designing and developing their own mosaic tiles. These tiles will eventually make up a design that will take centre stage within another home’s garden.

Artist Marion Sander has been working with another home’s staff and residents to decorate their conservatory. Members of staff have become engaged with the project and have even gone as far as designing their own clay brick tiles which will feature prominently within the conservatory. As the sessions progress, Marion hopes to introduce glass paints, artist canvases and paper lanterns to decorate, all of which will create a welcoming space for residents within their home.

In one residency, Firebird Trust creative team member, Gary Hammond, led some drumming workshops; he says ‘they are really looking forward to me going back in. They were also surprised that some residents stayed for the whole of the session without leaving! The staff were ace and took part, all in all a good time was had.’

As well as managing the Looked after Children project, Liam Robinson has also been delivering sessions to some of the homes. Utilising his creativity and his innate ability to connect with people, Liam has designed a range of workshops including a dance and movement based Arts Circus. He encouraged residents to imitate circus performers including lion tamers and clowns. Using costumes, face paints and various props Liam encouraged residents with varying physical and mental abilities to join in. He says of one young participant ‘her reaction to my session was brilliant.  She was animated throughout, she took part in everything, dressed up, had her face painted, face painted my face and the staff, danced, played instruments, twirled plates, juggling, etc.  I think the smile never left her face whilst I was there.’

In one location, Liam delivered a musical storytelling session and re-enacted Roald Dahl’s ‘Enormous Crocodile’ tale. He used drama, costumes, tactile experiences and music to engage the residents participating in this workshop.

These are just a few of the multi-arts activities that are currently being delivered throughout Lincolnshire under the umbrella of the Looked after Children’s project. The Firebird Trust and Liam are working in conjunction with young people and staff in each home to develop bespoke programmes depending on their interests. This is to ensure longevity of the project and to provide residents with new experiences and opportunities to gain new skills they wouldn’t normally have access to.

This Looked after Children homes project will continue to evolve and as the practitioners get to know the residents of each home in more depth, they will be able to cater for their needs with a far greater variety of activities. The Firebird Trust look forward to reporting on the progress of this worthwhile project.

The Firebird Trust features within Online Local Community Magazine – LeftLion

November 13th, 2012

The Firebird Trust were lucky enough to have a piece of editorial written about the work we do throughout the East Midlands and featured within online magazine – LeftLion was designed to be an online magazine and resource to help bring together Nottingham’s diverse cultural aspects.  Beth Hewitt of LeftLion visited our offices in Nottingham a couple of weeks ago to interview Business Development Manager, Kayleigh Glasper.

Some more exposure for The Firebird Trust, let’s hope this continues.

To read the article about Firebird Trust on LeftLion’s website, click here.

Rhythm & Rhyme project – Parent and Child Creative Play

October 29th, 2012

Rhythm and Rhyme project

Creating music at a Rhythm and Rhyme session.

Following on from our previous article :- SureStart Plays Host to Rhythm and Rhyme Programme, we are keen to give you all an update.

Dave ‘Stickman’ Higgins and  Rikki Thomas Martinez are delivering Rhythm and Rhyme projects at Sure Start venues across North West Leicestershire.

Some of the activities executed at these Rhythm and Rhyme sessions create inspirational language from both parents and children. The aim is to strengthen knowledge, vocabulary and communication skills plus create bonds through parent and child creative play.

We have recently received another case study from the session that we believe sums up the type of experience and outcome we aim to provide parent and child with. This is as follows:

Initially the child* described in this case study was difficult to engage, and had a very low attention span. After participating in our sessions at North West Leicester Sure Start Centres the parents have noticed that their child has become calmer and more involved in activities at the sessions but has started engaging and playing games at home.

 Subsequently the child’s father has bought a guitar and the family now use child centred songs to engage the child at home. These songs can be used and tailored around any subject such as breakfast, tidying up, getting shoes on or even bedtime routines!

 Parent has said: “I think it’s been one of the best sessions since coming to SureStart – very interactive and culturally combining music from around the world with the rhymes… It’s very uplifting… makes me want to be creative…”

We hope to be able to supply more of these case studies to share with you. It’s great to have these sessions deliver such positive outcomes!

*Names have been changed to protect the identity of our Rhythm and Rhyme participants.

Firebird Discuss Music in the Community with Local Newspaper

October 18th, 2012

Due to an increase in promotional activity, Firebird Trust were lucky enough to feature in the Nottingham Post newspaper today.

With an interest in our programmes, the Nottingham Post were keen to discuss music in the community and how we aim to introduce these programmes into Nottingham and the surrounding areas.

Great exposure for us!

If you click on the image you should be able to view a larger version of the article.




Firebird Trust work with Looked After Children in Lincolnshire

October 10th, 2012

Firebird Trust Win Music Contract For Looked After Children in Lincolnshire

Firebird Trust has won a 3 year contract with Lincolnshire County Council. We will be working in all of Lincolnshire’s homes for Looked after Children.

Sometimes children can’t live at home with their families and they have no relatives or friends who can look after them. When this happens Lincolnshire County Council try to find the right kind of living arrangements for the child.

Project manager Liam Robinson will be working with Rhubard Theatre and Sarah Bartholomew to execute a programme of activities incorporating a multi-arts approach. We will work in conjunction with young people in each home to develop bespoke programmes depending on their interests, meaning each one will be different. What an exciting opportunity! We look forward to kick starting the project this month!

More news to come!

Evaluation of Music in the Community Project-Ripples & Waves

August 16th, 2012

Jude Hall, Freelance Cultural Project Evaluator carried out a report to evaluate how successful Firebird Trust’s Ripples and Waves, a music in the community project, had been this year.

Communities of Binbrook and Brookenby were the focus of this project and it was born from the lack of community events available in the area. The Firebird Trust and resident artists Liam Robinson and Gary Hammond had a desire to rectify this and create a community for these two villages in East Lindsey, Lincolnshire.

Various activities took place under the umbrella of the Ripples and Waves project. Examples include:

• After School Guitar Club

• Binbrook Activity Night

• Ravendale Care Home Visits

• Story & Sound Sessions


• The encouragement and growth of two local groups. Folk group and youth rock band.

The community were rewarded for their participation and support with one off events such as:

• Song writing workshops

• A Memphis Belle celebration

• Local History Group Talks

• Other skill building activities

The project’s aims were to make music an everyday commonplace occurrence, create a social experience, positively engage community members of all ages, build confidence through a taught programme and develop skills. They also aimed to create foundations for community engagement.

The ultimate aim of the Firebird Trust was that the project should become self sustaining, leaving the residents of Binbrook and Brookenby with the skills, knowledge and tools to continue the work initiated by the project alone.

Our aims were achieved and we received some excellent feedback from members of the community. We are proud to leave behind a legacy that will continue to thrive in a flourishing community.

The following are examples of some of the testimonials we received from various participants of this project. It’s always great to get such fantastic feedback.

“We have been very pleased with work from the project and it has benefited many families in the area. The guitar club has been especially brilliant as it has enabled parents and children to learn together. (So much so there’s a waiting list to start in September!!!) Liam has also supported throughout and the dance/ music sessions have been super. Any further working together / support would be extremely well received.” (Binbrook Primary School Head Teacher).

“Gary helped create a unique experience for the kids, something which they’d never have had a chance to participate in otherwise. Everything has been received extremely positively!” (Family Activity Club coordinator).