Last month we had a knock on the door from our “noisy” neighbours at Wigmore Hall Learning. They’re the team responsible for inspiring new connections between people and music at the country’s leading international music venue, and they came to ask us a small favour...
Each year, Wigmore Hall selects a handful of talented students from colleges across London to put on their own 45-minute show at the concert hall, from selecting an artist through to developing a marketing plan and managing the event logistics. The groups are known as the Young Producers, and the experience goes towards their Silver Arts Award, a nationally-recognised qualification.
So where does Coca-Cola fit into all of this?
As part of the programme, students are given the opportunity to pitch their ideas and receive mentoring sessions from events management and marketing experts across the capital. And with Coca-Cola on their doorstep, they didn’t have too far to go to find an expert.
Liz Lowe, who has spent years working with young people and charitable organisations as Coca-Cola Great Britain’s Corporate Responsibility & Sustainability Manager, warmly welcomed Wigmore Hall’s request and took out an afternoon to sit down with the group. In an unoccupied meeting room, the Young Producers presented their marketing plan, before hearing some constructive feedback from Liz, followed by first-hand advice from her experience working in the industry.
Ashlin, one of the first pupils to present, said: “At first I was really nervous! But that soon changed, and I realised it was actually a really friendly and relaxed atmosphere in the room, where you could make a point and they weren’t going to make you feel stupid if you got it wrong.”
“I honestly didn’t think I’d be coming to Coca-Cola’s offices,” said Yassin, the group’s most inquisitive pupil. “Once I found out I was really excited and barely got any sleep. They’re nothing like what I imagined, it’s such a creative and arty environment.”
“The most important thing I learnt is that it’s always good to talk to people, and engage with them. Liz said she’s got to where she is today because she wasn’t afraid to speak up and make friends with people. She realised the importance of good relationships, and being in the right place at the right time. That’s one of the most useful pieces of advice I’ve been given.”
The session ended with a group photo outside one of the meeting rooms, followed by a whistle-stop tour of the office.
“It was great to see such enthusiasm and energy from the group,” said Liz. “They were full of interesting ideas and asked some great questions about marketing. I wish them all the best with their show!”
The 2015/16 Young Producers are year 9, 10 and 11 students from St George’s Catholic School, Tri Borough and Central Foundation Girls School and Bishop Challoner Catholic Collegiate School, Tower Hamlets. The concerts take place on Friday 4th March, and Wednesday 9th March at Wigmore Hall. Find out more here: http://wigmore-hall.org.uk/learning/young-producers
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