In Harmony Opera North engages over 2500 children and young people every week.

Delivering an inclusive programme of high quality music education and performance opportunities, In Harmony Opera North encourages young people from all backgrounds to engage with the arts and benefit from a range of personal, social and musical outcomes.

The programme promotes musical excellence and provides development pathways for committed and enthusiastic young people to realise their musical potential, but In Harmony Opera North is more than a music programme: at its heart the programme supports the development of a strong sense of community which feels connected to the wider company of Opera North and the work that it creates and presents.

Support In Harmony Opera North

You can help us to ignite a lifelong love of music in the next generation, and spark a lifetime of opportunities for young people across the region.

In Harmony is currently taking place at six primary schools in Leeds and Halifax, and one secondary school in Leeds.

Since Spring 2013, In Harmony Opera North has centred around the children and community of Windmill Primary School in Belle Isle, south Leeds. In September 2015 Low Road Primary School in Hunslet was absorbed into the programme.

It was then extended to New Bewerley Community School, Beeston, in September 2016, with Richmond Hill Academy in Cross Green becoming the fourth In Harmony school in September 2018.

Between 2019 and 2022, In Harmony Opera North ran after school sessions at The Ruth Gorse Academy. 2019 also saw the start of a two-year collaboration with The Stephen Longfellow Academy, which works with students who are struggling to maintain a full-time place in mainstream education.

In 2022, two new primary schools joined the programme – Clapgate Primary School in Belle Isle and Lee Mount Primary School in Halifax – as well as a secondary school – Trinity Academy Leeds – where In Harmony runs an afterschool setting.

In Harmony Opera North offers young people regular music making activities both within curriculum time and as extra-curricular activity. All pupils in Year 1-2 participate in weekly musicianship lessons. In Year 3-4, pupils join a weekly choir. Year 3-6 also participate in small group weekly instrumental lessons. Some schools receive specialist SEND delivery from an experienced music therapist.

In Harmony participants also have access to a range of ‘extras’, which are incorporated into the programme. These may include workshops and performances with musicians from the Orchestra and Chorus of Opera North, or access to company’s productions. All participants perform to family and friends on a termly basis.

In 2023 Opera North is working closely with the local community to deepen cultural engagement in the Richmond Hill, Cross Green and East End Park area of Leeds.

The In Harmony programme continues to be an essential ingredient in ensuring the future success of our pupils. It continues to define our identity and ethos, and enriches the social, moral, spiritual and cultural aspects of our curriculum in a way that no other project can match.

It has brought communities together and acts as the unifying thread in the tapestry of our ongoing achievements. My pupils exude pride and passion for the In Harmony programme. Long may it continue to change lives for the better.”

— Andy Gamble, Executive Headteacher, Low Road and Windmill Music Federation

In Harmony is a national programme that aims to inspire and transform the lives of children in deprived communities, using the power and disciplines of ensemble music-making. The programme, funded by the Department for Education and Arts Council England, has ongoing projects in Lambeth, Liverpool, Newcastle Gateshead, Nottingham, and Telford and Stoke in addition to In Harmony Opera North.

In Harmony Opera North is generously funded by:
Arts Council England
The Keith Howard Foundation
The Liz and Terry Bramall Foundation
Opera North Future Fund

In Harmony Ambassadors:
The Charles and Elsie Sykes Trust

In Harmony Supporters:
The Harrison-Frank Family Foundation (UK)
Pinsent Masons
The Rudge Shipley Charitable Foundation

Liz and Terry Bramall Foundation logo


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