Swaledale Festival engages with hundreds of children of different backgrounds in art and music projects throughout the year, not just during the Festival fortnight.  We send professional musicians, writers and artists into schools and community centres to inspire and teach the children, and we provide a platform for students' work by organising special concerts and exhibitions.

In 2017 Swaledale Festival collaborated with local schools, National Youth Jazz Orchestra, BFBS and NYMAZ to run a major music and visual arts project: JAZZ!  This saw the superb National Youth Jazz Orchestra perform a special concert for 500 school children in Catterick Garrison that was broadcast to all North Yorkshire schools and to army bases all over the world.  Primary school children also produced their own jazz-inspired artwork that was displayed at high-profile venues including The Station Gallery in Richmond.


We work with people of all ages, not just children, by organising community performance projects, art classes, exhibitions, workshops and mentoring schemes.  Almost all of our community and education work is delivered free of charge to participants.  

Our Wandering Minstrels programme sees Swaledale Festival engaging world class musicians to perform in care homes and sheltered housing each year - to entertain people who are unable to attend our regular concerts.  Feedback confirms that live music has a profound and beneficial effect on residents, particularly those with dementia.

Young Artists Platform

Our Young Artists Platform consists of an annual series of concerts by young musicians early in their careers, offering valuable performance experience and helping to raise profiles and build audiences.  Most years we include at least one masterclass, too, in which local young musicians are invited to perform in and receive expert guidance from a world-class musician or group.  Former young artists include Sheku Kanneh-Mason, Jess Gillam, Behn Quartet and the Bammental Orchestra.

Reduced-Price Tickets

It is really important to us that Swaledale Festival is accessible to young people.  For that reason we offer tickets for young people at extremely affordable prices - typically just £3 for under-25s.