July 14, 2024

Creative connections: ordinary people doing extraordinary things – NW Live Arts brings new workshops and concerts to London

NW Live Arts have announced a new concert,  Creative Connections on April 17th at St John’s Waterloo. This marks the culmination of a project bringing together professional musicians and members of the local community to explore the value of creative connections between cultures and communities in 7 weekly creative workshops and finally a concert.

The London music charity invited five musicians to co-curate a concert of music in different genres from different cultures. The result is a captivating mix of Basque folk, mediaeval, South American, contemporary, Central European, Indian contemporary and Middle Eastern music, along with jaw-dropping improvisation. The programme is delightfully woven together in a continuous 70-minute performance, sharing stories of what brings us together and acknowledging our shared humanity.

About the concert

Creative Connections

St John’s Waterloo

Wednesday 17 April, 7.30pm


David Zucchi saxophone

Iñigo Mikeleiz-Berrade accordion

Emma Purslow violin

Attab Haddad oud (pictured above)

Kuljit Bhamra MBE tabla

NW Live Arts presents Creative Connections, in conjunction with St John’s Waterloo.

An evening of captivating mix of music from plainchant by Hildegard of Bingen, to music by North American composer Kenji Bunch, accordion virtuosi Richard Galliano and Astor Piazzolla, violin music by Enescu and arrangements of pieces by Attab and Kuljit. The programme will also include solos from Kuljit Bhamra’s latest album A Tablanaut’s Journey. The programme is delightfully woven together in a continuous 70-minute performance, telling stories of what brings us together in  joyful recognition of our shared humanity.

Alongside the concert performance, we’re running creative workshops with the St John’s Waterloo community. In these workshops, music, improvisation and storytelling will collide, culminating in an informal performance of a soundscape devised by the musicians and workshop attendees as equal creative partners.

NW Live Arts was started in 2018 by Caroline Heslop in Camden, with the mission of bringing world-class music to communities which have been historically marginalised or underserved. Each concert is intelligently curated around a theme, with a very diverse range of influences – from well-known classical music, new music, folk and music from around the world feeding into the programme. Alongside each concert there is a series of music and storytelling workshops which help local people engage with the theme of the concert, meet and be creative with some of the musicians from the concert, and for those who wish to, perform in the concert.

The benefits to the programme are many. They demonstrate that “ordinary people” can do extraordinary things when they are encouraged and facilitated to engage meaningfully in the arts and are treated as creative equals with the professional musicians and storytellers. Participants have seen huge benefits to their wellbeing and emotional health, through building skills and connecting with others, using music and storytelling as an outlet for processing lived experiences. They learn from high calibre professionals, boosting self belief in their ability.

Music from the concert programme will be used as one of the resources for the workshops co-ordinated by Rhia Parker and facilitated by Aga Serugo Lugo. Participants will work on their stories told in words and music together with Rhia and Aga.


A former participant said: “The process of workshopping the idea and linking coming home to the journey of Odysseus was inspired. You managed to create an environment, that allowed us to form a troop and encouraged us to explore our feelings of coming back from Combat in a safe place. We all immediately, veterans and musicians, became a close and caring band. Art has this ability to allow the scared and troubled mind to shine a light on the darkness of the soul and reaffirm our basic humanity. Over the weeks of rehearsals it was a joy to belong and care for each other. The performance night was a revelation, the warmth of the audience and the standing ovation, for our story, stunned and inspired us.”


Caroline Heslop, founder and Artistic Director of NW Live Arts says: “Since 2018 NW Live Arts has been bringing world-class music to communities and venues across London with the belief that participation in the arts can have an extraordinary impact on our mental health, understanding and empathy. This new series of workshops with participants proving themselves as inspired storytellers and emerging composers is incredibly exciting.  


Tickets are available

£18 / £10 (concessions)