Today, 42 young creatives from London, Los Angeles, Gateshead, Scotland and Bristol will release Tuning into Change: A Youth Manifesto for the Arts at the Barbican, London, calling on world leaders, the Government, arts leaders, journalists, teachers, young people and the general public to prioritise access to the arts. A Barbican Guildhall Creative Learning project, the Manifesto will be launched at an open rehearsal in the Barbican Hall featuring world-renowned conductor Gustavo Dudamel, members of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain (NYO) and the Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles (YOLA), as part of the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s 2018 Barbican residency. The publication’s foreword is written by Dudamel.
Aimée Hanson, 16, said: “Things need to change; otherwise people are at risk of being divided and disconnected. They’ll be deprived of expressing their true selves and discovering hidden passions that could ultimately lead to something revolutionary. Tuning into Change: A Youth Manifesto for the Arts is proof that, regardless of our age, we as young people are just as capable of generating and executing ideas to change the world. We call on you to join our movement because together we can create a change greater than any one individual.”
The Tuning into Change project brought the young creatives together at workshops over a period of six months to determine what the arts can offer young people and the role that young artists can play to create lasting change in our uncertain world. Earlier this week, the 14-to-25-year olds collectively produced their fourteen point Manifesto and accompanying 93 page publication – exploring how young people can effect change at different levels, from the individual to the global – over just two days (30 April – 1 May).
Gustavo Dudamel said: “Art offers lessons and tools for us to improve ourselves, and like in an orchestra, fosters an environment where all can express their voices, share their experiences, and in the spirit of learning, compassion and respect, create a more harmonious world together. That ideal is what this Manifesto represents and why I am confident the young people whose ideas are included - as aspiring artists and committed citizens - will be great leaders in creating a better tomorrow.”
Tuning into Change: A Youth Manifesto for the Arts makes THE ASK: a 14-point plan including:
World Leaders: listen, just listen, to other people’s beliefs. Governments: take the pressure off grades/targets in education in order to focus on wellbeing and creativity; make the arts a fundamental part of the classroom and curriculum. Arts leaders: prioritise providing opportunities within the arts world to people with no prior experience of them.
Teachers: spend 30 minutes this week doing art of any kind; share ideas with other teachers.
Artists, musicians, the public: go on to your music app, type in ‘classical music’ and listen to the first piece that comes up.
Young People: keep on perfecting your talent and talk to other young people about it, share what you love and generate ideas. Believe in yourself.
Jenny Mollica, Head of Creative Learning, Barbican / Guildhall School of Music & Drama, said: “Young people are our future and it is imperative that we listen to them. At Barbican Guildhall Creative Learning we work with thousands of young people every year to ensure they can access and engage with world-class arts for free and we are so grateful to all of the young people involved for their tremendous commitment to this pioneering project. We would encourage everyone to read and share Tuning into Change: A Youth Manifesto for the Arts which can be found on the Barbican’s website.”
Tuning into Change was delivered in partnership between Barbican Guildhall Creative Learning and the Los Angeles Philharmonic with Big Noise Raploch in Stirling, Bristol Plays Music, NYO, Sage Gateshead and YOLA and was funded by Art50, a scheme commissioned by Sky Arts to explore the notion of British identity in the wake of Brexit.
The project is part of the Barbican’s 2018 season The Art of Change which explores how the arts respond to, reflect and potentially effect change in the social and political landscape.