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About Us

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Who We Are

Since English Pocket Opera Company (EPOC) was founded in 1993, it has grown to become one of the largest charitable providers of music education in the UK, giving musical opportunities to over 20,000 children each year.

EPOC creates opera: for, by, and with children and young people; offering opportunities to work closely with professional artists, participate in singing, acting, musical composition, art and design whilst building key skills across the curriculum.

EPOC is based in a primary school: Pooles Park Primary School, Finsbury Park in Islington, London. Its work is grounded in the school and its community and branches out to the Borough of Islington, the 32 boroughs of London, Hertfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Britain and as far as Bermuda

Vision

EPOC exists to inspire children’s creativity through music.  We aim to create unique and accessible music experiences that develop children’s confidence, build their communication skills, introduce them to new art forms and help them to realise their full potential.  We seek opportunities to demonstrate the significant benefits that music can bring and its power to transform lives and communities.

What We Do

Opera: for, by, and with children and young people.

Opera: embraces singing, instrumental music, drama, dance, composition, design and poetry; takes in history, foreign languages, geography, PHSE, maths and English; requires teamwork; builds communities; and requires a host of skills including counting, painting, wiring a plug, sewing, building, creative writing, composition and many more.

Through our core programmes, EPOC offers a wide range of specialist projects to thousands of children and young people. 

We offer:

  • workshops in schools – singing, drama, dance and composition;
  • interactive professionally performed presentations in schools;
  • performing opportunities for children in fully staged operas in public theatres with professional singers and musicians;
  • capacity building and resources designed to promote self-sustainability in schools, including: professional development, teacher mentoring, and volunteer training;
  • creation of curriculum and teaching resources for integrated learning & continued use;
  • evaluating our work to ensure that it meets the needs of the partners that we work with; and
  • strategic partnerships with arts and community organisations

We create unique programmes that:

  • are tailored to achieve broader educational and social impact;
  • build capacity for long-term sustainability;
  • use opera: a unique and broadly cross-curricular art form that embraces music, singing, design, history, costume, languages, literacy, technology, dance and art;
  • are tailored to individual school/community requirements; and
  • culminate with showcase performing opportunities for children alongside professional artists and musicians in schools, concert halls and theatres.

EPOC works with:

  • children and young people – of all ages and abilities, at nursery, primary, secondary and/or tertiary level.
  • schools – in class-sized groups, whole schools and/or clusters of schools;
  • teachers – either in class or in groups.

Why We Do It

Music has the power to transform lives, yet hundreds of thousands of children and young people are missing out.  The benefits of participation in the creative arts are well documented and as research demonstrates, music making helps develop a child’s creativity and intellectual, personal and social development.

Participation in music profoundly adds to our quality of life, strengthens our identity and self-esteem and connects us to one another and to our community. As well as being fun and vital to our children, music projects like ours

  • help to develop essential life-skills such as teamwork, communication and respect for others;
  • encourage critical thinking and has a direct and positive effect on learning skills. Music can cultivate an appreciation of other cultures, embracing diversity and community awareness; and
  • allow and encourage self-expression

We believe that all children should have access to the benefits that music-making can bring and we are committed to creating opportunities for all children to participate in the arts, particularly those from socio-economically disadvantaged backgrounds.