Kate Hodson of Magic Me Arts reflects on her experience as a Drake Music trustee.
She shares what she gained from being on the board and a few highlights from her time with us.
I was attracted to the opportunity to become a trustee with Drake Music for a number of reasons.
Firstly, I felt a strong affiliation with the values at the core of the organisations – that everyone has the right to make music, be creative and express themselves.
I wanted to contribute and support an organisation which held these values and I loved the innovative solutions in Assistive Music Tech that Drake Music were creating and using.
Secondly, whilst working for in a large arts organisation at the time, I wanted to find ways to apply and develop my strategic thinking at a higher level.
As much as being a trustee was about sharing my skills and experience, it was also an opportunity to develop, learn and grow my knowledge in areas I wasn’t touching on so regularly in my day job.
Over the four years as a trustee with Drake Music, there were many highlights and favourite moments.
Seeing the work of the R&D programme grow from strength to strength was one of these; from visiting hack-a-thon events and seeing the buzz around musicians and coders/makers working together to test new ideas, to the seeing the success of the instruments such as the Kellycaster emerge from these events and gain more momentum.
Seeing the work in schools and with young people develop, working with young disabled musicians in a variety of settings, across England, was another highlight.
I was proud to see be part of an organisation that continues to influence and campaign that all young people have the right to make music, with big events like the We All Make Music conference putting the crucial issue of inclusion at the heart as part of the wider music education debate and landscape.
And finally, seeing Drake Music’s commitment to commissioning disabled musicians was always an important part of why I was part of the Drake Music family.
The DM Resonate event last year at the ICA was a particularly exciting moment for the organisation, heading up an event that showcased disabled musicians from across genres and disciplines on one dynamic lineup.
Being a trustee enabled me to be around the table and influence the wider key decisions that set the direction of travel for Drake Music, as well as work closely with key members of staff to support development of the strategy, learning and participation vision, and key policies for the organisation.
Having stepped down after 4 years, I encourage others to join the board and to take the opportunity to guide and influence such an important organisation as Drake Music into its exciting future.