Music Bus

We are a brother and sister team who have worked in the arts both together and independently for over 40 years. Jeremy Arden is a composer, pianist and teacher and leading exponent of the Schillinger System of musical composition. Annabel Arden is an international theatre and opera director. She began her career as co founder of Theatre de Complicite in 1983. Her most recent work with Simon McBurney, was supported by Hawkood at a crucial moment during the lockdown in March 2021. Annabel fell in love with HW and realised it was the perfect place to develop the project of the Music Bus, a long held vision.

The Music Bus is a mobile music centre that can be brought to any venue where young people want to participate, such as schools, arts centres and festivals.

The Bus comes with several highly skilled musical facilitators, people who can improvise on multiple instruments as well assing, and a extraordinary sound artist, someone who can capture and manipulate in real time, the voices of the children, their heart beats and breath sounds.

Our proposition is that anything that moves can be made into music and that many other perceptual qualities, such as colour, luminosity, texture and mood can be directly translated into sound.

You have everything you need from the moment you step on the bus.

All the experiments, games and surprises are rooted in your movements, body, voice and anything that you can make move – from a scrumpled piece of paper to a stick to a clockwork toy. We hope to convince the children that the music is in them, their bodies, their voices, their experience. And that through music they can also tell their story.

We believe in music as a healing tool, intrinsic to what we think of as civilisation and key to survival. It has been shown that our ability to perceive music is completely linked to our evolutionary past. Music connects us with many living beings: we share the perception of pitch with cats, dogs and owls and who knows how many other creatures…..

This is the very beginning of the Music Bus project. At Hawkwood we are working to expand the germ of our idea. Even though we are only here for a long weekend, the creative environment and the open engaged quality of conversations over meals have helped and influenced us. We are energised! Imagining introductions to the bus, developing immersive games, shared processes which will be fun and moving. We feel it is vitally important that children are made aware of the universe of musical expression which goes way beyond genre style and fashion.

The music bus is conceived as an inclusive experience to stimulate young people’s imaginative curiosity about what music really is and how they can make it.

Full credit to the Music Bus crew; Jeremy Arden and Annabel Arden, for their wonderful work in their artist residency.


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