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National Children’s Orchestras welcomes Louise Mitchell as new Chair of Trustees

29th January 2020

National Children’s Orchestras (NCO), the music charity that inspires young musicians aged 7 to 14 years old to achieve their full potential through orchestral performance, has today announced Louise Mitchell as its new Chair of Trustees.

Louise is Chief Executive of Bristol Music Trust, which was created by Bristol City Council in 2011 to manage Colston Hall, the south west’s largest concert hall, and take a regional overview of music promotion and formal music education and where she is currently overseeing a £48.8 million building transformation.

Previously, Louise was the Director of the Glasgow UNESCO City of Music and Director of Glasgow Concert Halls, where she spearheaded the regeneration of two of the city’s most revered venues, the City Halls and The Old Fruitmarket, in a substantial £8.3m redevelopment. She has also had a series of high profile positions in the classical music world including Concerts Director for the London Philharmonic Orchestra and Assistant Director at the Edinburgh International Festival.

Louise is also a board member of Destination Bristol and Paraorchestra and Friends, Honorary Secretary of the Royal Philharmonic Society, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, and a past Board Member of the International Society for Performing Arts & Association of British Orchestras.

She joins National Children’s Orchestras board of Trustees at a time when the charity is embarking on an ambitious new strategy to increase diversity and embed wellbeing, creativity and child voice across its orchestral learning programme. Louise will also play a key role in the charity’s relocation to Bristol in 2020 as it seeks to develop partnerships and networks with Bristol’s thriving education and arts sectors and beyond.

Louise Mitchell said “I’m so pleased to be joining National Children’s Orchestras at this crucial time for the organisation. I’ve been impressed with their reach and clear ambition to inspire young musicians and I can really see how the organisation adds value to the local and national music education scene. I look forward to doing everything I can to support Managing Director Sophie Lewis and the rest of the senior leadership team.”

Louise takes over from Interim Chair, Janet Baker who said “The recruitment of Louise is an incredibly positive story for NCO. Louise is an active and committed champion of classical music in the UK, and the success she and her team are making of running the music education hub in Bristol is exciting to see. I am looking forward to continuing my Trusteeship at NCO.”

Founded in 1978 by Vivienne Price and in response to a gap in provision for younger players to experience orchestral performance at a national level, today NCO consists of 11 national and regional symphony orchestras made up of 703 remarkable young musicians. The charity’s bursary fund enables over 100 children each year to participate in residencies and performances. In 2020 NCO’s orchestras will perform at some of the UK’s finest concert halls including The Bridgewater Hall in Manchester, Queen Elizabeth Hall at London’s Southbank Centre and Town Hall, Birmingham