Yeovil Music Centre

A Brief History of Yeovil Music Centre.

        Yeovil Music Centre was founded in 1969 by staff from the music department of Yeovil College. Soon after its conception, pianist and teacher, Margaret Gant took over the reins and invited other teachers to help. Local teachers Sonja Helliar and Janice Sugg assisted Maureen in the early days and soon Yeovil had its own flourishing music centre, encouraging and aiding budding musicians of all ages. 

Many teachers have been involved over the years, each adding their own unique style of educating, encouraging and inspiring students, Will Antell, Bert Parton, Clive Webb, Paul Wendell, Alison Rees, Ruth Jones, Ian Gibbins, Elise Gourlay, Robert Martin & Steve Smith, to name but a few. Yeovil Music Centre thanks those 50+ local musicians and music teachers for contributing their skills and enthusiasm to furthering the musical education and enjoyment of the 1000’s of young people who have passed through our doors. 

The centre has incorporated many diverse musical groups, for example The Suzuki Strings, Bertie's Big Band (now thriving independently), Folk Bands, Choirs, Pop Groups, Orchestras, Wind Bands and ensembles of every shape and size.   

Over the years, many people have heard the various ensembles (including the now sadly disbanded Yeovil Youth Concert Band) perform at school fairs (for example at St. Gildas, Holy Trinity and Huish), or at Lufton College, Abbey Manor Community Centre, The Octagon Theatre, and Westland Sports and Social Club.

 Eventually, Somerset County Council captained the helm of the music centre, firstly in the guise of SOMMITS and then as Somerset Music. In July 2008, Yeovil Music Centre became independent once more. 

In all this time two constant factors have been evident, a constant supply of talented musicians from the Yeovil area and dedicated teaching staff. 

The Tuck Shop, voluntarily managed and operated by members for the sole purpose of supporting the music centre, has been an integral part of Yeovil Music Centre since 1996. Besides providing refreshments and support each week they have, over the years, sponsored:- trips to shows; weekend adventures at Osmington and Kilve; discos; barbecues; trophies and awards. They have equipment, instruments and sheet music available to borrow.

Today Yeovil Music Centre offers many musical adventures and activities. Let us all hope that in the future we can continue to assist in the education, inspiration, development and nurturing of the wealth of talent that Yeovil consistently produces. 

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