"Music is salvation. Without music there would almost be no point of life". Compelling words from year 12 student and lead guitarist James Finegan of The Psycho Muffins, hailing from Morpeth School in Bethnal Green, London.
Long led by Musical Futures Associate Peter Romhany, Morpeth School's music department has an enviable reputation in the international music education community for fostering the best musical talent from its students. Peter was an early adopter of the Musical Futures initiative and I have witnessed, first hand the programme's achievements both in Morpeth's classrooms and across the length & breadth of the United Kingdom.
As part of building a new library of photographs to create the new Musical Futures website, I visited many schools across the country, including spending a day at Morpeth. Working through various school years, I met James along with his friend, fellow band member and bass player Sravudh Tanhai, jamming in one of the studios. Learning that I was documenting various aspects of the music department, James asked if I'd capture his alter ego and regular band attire for prosperity. After running home for his outfit, the scene was then set to make the portrait you see above.
James & Sravudh have just shared their thoughts about music education and their words strike at the very crux of what makes a vital and rewarding education environment. A mere 1'40" long, I urge you to view and share. I invite Secretary of State for Education, Nicky Morgan to watch this video too.