Transforming lives through music.

We aim to ensure that everyone, regardless of their background or situation, has the chance to make music. We work innovatively with people of all ages, empowering them to reach their full potential, in music, in learning and in life.
See the difference we make

Music expresses that which cannot be said
and on which it is impossible to be silent.

Victor Hugo.

Music is a way for young people to connect with themselves as well as a bridge for connecting with others.

Daniel A Carp, CEO, Eastman Kodak.

Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything.


When words fail, music speaks.

Hans Christian Andersen.

Why music works

Music changes lives: we see it happening every day in our work, and hear about it from young people and their parents, as well as colleagues across the country.

A wealth of research, and our own experience, has shown that music can improve confidence, self-esteem, motivation, engagement in education, wellbeing, self-efficacy, mental agility, social and teamwork skills. It can develop creativity, problem-solving skills, and our understanding of the world and our place in it.

It’s a powerful means of communicating, beyond words, which enriches our lives, gives us feelings and experiences like nothing else, and can change the way we think, feel and act.

Latest news

Instrumental & vocal teachers required

    Instrumental & vocal teachers required for The Forest High School, Cinderford, Gloucestershire   Be part of our vision for the transforming role of music, for individuals, the school and the local community   We are particularly looking for vocal and... read more

Mix & Mash back for Summer 2016

After taking a couple of years off to work on other projects (and get married!), Mix & Mash is back! We will be running our summer school project as part of Of Course We Can from 8th – 12th August. Mix & Mash Music Week will provide a crash-course in modern... read more
More resources coming soon!

What we do

We work in schools, pre-schools, hospitals and community settings across the county, as well as our three studios in Cheltenham, Gloucester and Cinderford.

View our schools brochure to find out how we can help.


Our work is divided into three core areas:


Direct delivery:

This includes bespoke workshops, education programmes, and community based drop-in sessions, with subjects ranging from instrument and vocal tuition to songwriting and music production classes.

Training, capacity-building and leadership development:

Youth leadership, traineeships, apprenticeships, teacher training, workforce development, advice and guidance, conferences.

Influence and advocacy:

We develop and contribute to research and best practice, working with policy-makers, partners and our ambassadors to make the case for music and drive up quality delivery.

The difference we make

Our work makes a difference across a wealth of areas:

Promoting enjoyment and inclusion, so that everyone has a chance to find their voice or musical skill, exploring music as a way to enhance their life.
Improving people’s physical, mental and social health and wellbeing, for example by working with people affected by mental health problems, those with disabilities, or young people at risk of offending.
Engaging and motivating young people in education, increasing attainment and helping them progress through vocational or academic routes and into employment.
Developing musical talent, improving progression pathways for gifted musicians and technicians.
Developing the music workforce, training musicians, teaching staff and youth workers, as well as supporting young leaders, so that the county can deliver more and better quality music provision.
Increasing understanding of the importance of music, amongst policymakers and funders, building support for the sector now and in the future.

How we can help you

Services we provide
  • Education programmes and sessions in schools
  • Bespoke workshops
  • Community based drop-in sessions
  • Conferences
  • Instrument tuition
  • Singing, beatbox and rap
  • Songwriting and music production classes
  • Youth leadership programmes traineeships, apprenticeships
  • Training and workforce development for teachers, community workers and musicians
We work with

We work with all ages and all abilities, from absolute beginners to some of the county’s most gifted and talented musicians. But our guiding value is inclusion – making sure everyone, regardless of their situation, has the chance to make or enjoy music – so we have a keen focus and a strong track record on:

  • Early years.
  • Children and young people in challenging circumstances including young offenders, those not in education or employment, looked-after children.
  • Disabled people and those with chronic physical and mental health conditions.

Our safeguarding policy:

We keep the children and young people we work with safe, read how we do this.

Who we are

Formerly Gloucester Music Makers, we’re a highly skilled and experienced team of committed, creative and innovative professional musicians, driven by a passion for inclusion.

In addition to the core team, we work with a variety of music leaders, young volunteers and teachers to provide bespoke workshops, education programmes, after-schools and drop-in sessions for people of all ages and abilities.

If you’d like to speak to a member of our extended team contact Beth.

Areas of expertise

  • Early years
  • Musical inclusion
  • Music production
  • Rap and beatbox
  • Vocal work

Our core team

Deborah Potts

Our CEO Deborah has over 20 years’ experience working at the highest level in national charities from the Women’s Sports Foundation to the YMCA. She specialises in strategic development and growing charities to maximise their impact.

Mark Bick

A founder of the Forest of Dean Music Makers (which went on to join with others to form The Music Works), Mark Bick has 30 years’ experience in music education and community arts as a workshop leader, manager and trainer. He specialises in music inclusion.

Ali Harmer

Ali Harmer has been involved in musical play since 1996 working in early years, healthcare and special educational settings. Her focus is on communication in musical play, including diagnostic interactions.

Rob Kempner

Rob Kempner is a trained primary teacher with a music specialism. He has over 20 years’ experience in both urban and rural schools, including eight years as a head, and is an expert in inclusion.

Malaki Patterson

Malaki runs our studios and is a music producer, sound engineer and music educator with over 10 years’ experience in both the industry and community field. His skills are in music technology and production, songwriting, vocals (rap) and artist development.

Liz Terry

Liz has over 20 years’ experience of delivering creative and inclusive singing and music sessions with adults, children and young people in a variety of educational, community and health settings. She specialises in vocals and music for health, is a trainer and a natural voice practitioner.

The Music Works

The Music Works is a charity whose goal is to transform lives through music. Formerly Gloucester Music Makers, we work with all ages and all abilities, from absolute beginners to some of the county’s most gifted and talented musicians, offering services from one-to-one music mentoring to performances.

Through this, we aim to ensure that everyone, regardless of their background or situation, has the chance to make and enjoy music. But, more than that, we use music to empower them to reach their full potential, in music, in learning, and in life.

Find our more or get involved

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