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University to appoint new Director/Animateur for its reshaped music provision

Credit: Aberystwyth University

Aberystwyth University has announced its intention to appoint a new Director/Animateur of Music to lead its reshaped and revitalised music provision into the future.

For more than a century, Aberystwyth University has made a key contribution to Wales’s proud and long-standing tradition of music.

With the global COVID-19 pandemic having necessitated a lull in the University’s musical activity, the University is delighted to announce the re-launch of Music at Aber, which will continue as a collaborative effort between the University, Aberystwyth Arts Centre and the wider community.

Towards the end of last year, the University gathered the views of members of the community, including groups connected to the existing music provision, students and student bursary holders, external stakeholders, music organisations, and the wider public. The re-launch of Music will respond to that discussion.

Dr Anwen Jones, Pro-Vice Chancellor at Aberystwyth University commented: “The discussion and online public meetings we held clearly demonstrated that music is valued at Aberystwyth, both within and beyond the University.  The Aberystwyth community’s commitment to, and fondness for, established activities such as the Philomusica and the University and Town Singers came across strongly, emphasising the importance of building upon the strong strands that exist within our current provision.

“We also know that there is real enthusiasm for more diversification, inclusivity, experimentation and collaboration.  So, as we develop and shape our refreshed music provision, we also want to focus on the perspective and aspirations of our students, younger members of the community and reach out to new cohorts and communities.

“The post of Director/Animateur of Music will offer an exciting opportunity for the appointee to bring their own ideas and specialisms, and to guide and lead our music provision into the future.”

Once appointed, the new Director/Animateur will collaborate closely with Aberystwyth Arts Centre.  This will allow for the development of an overarching music strategy that will benefit the University, the Arts Centre and the community, and will complement the Arts Centre’s exciting programme.

Dafydd Rhys, Director of Aberystwyth Arts Centre, said: “Music in Aberystwyth has long benefited from an exciting collaborative dynamic between University staff, students and the wider community. As the University demonstrates its continued commitment to and investment in its music provision, we look forward to a new era of energetic musical performances and engagement with a varied and stimulating musical experience, which will spread the many benefits that music brings throughout our community and beyond.”

Proposals for music provision into the future include maintaining and developing student music bursaries, and allocating appropriate rehearsal and practice spaces to house large-group music activity and to meet demand to develop and house other types of music-practice and music-making; including spaces for pop and rock band practice and ‘jam’ sessions.

As part of its refreshed provision, the University will also work to develop mutually-beneficial collaborations and partnerships with other music-focused organisations in the community and with external bodies, and use these relationships to nurture new projects and initiatives.