10 brilliant composers, Alexander Campkin, Alice Zawadzki, Ayanna Witter-Johnson, Ben Parry, CN Lester, Charlotte Harding, Kerry Andrew, Roderick Williams, Shruthi Rajasekar and YolanDa Brown have written 10 brand new songs for children, which have been recorded by Sale Youth Choirs, Britannia Primary School, Bristol Youth Choir, Sir John Leman High School, and the National Youth Girls’ Choir.

The sheet music, recordings, and many other resources are available online now for free as part of the Friday Afternoons project, which celebrates its tenth anniversary in 2023.

Friday Afternoons is named after the set of songs composed by Benjamin Britten for the children at his brother’s school in Prestatyn, who always had a singing lesson on a Friday afternoon. It was one of Britten’s earliest examples of music that would be “useful” to a particular community.

Friday Afternoons creates high-quality original music with an exciting array of contemporary composers, with young people in mind. It also creates resources and training, enabling teachers to confidently teach singing in schools and other education settings.

Song is at the heart of Britten Pears Arts as one of the most democratic and accessible forms of community music-making.

The Friday Afternoons vision is for every young person to have access to the joy of high-quality music experiences through their voice. The songs and resources cater to a range of abilities for both young people and their teachers, ensuring both accessibility and challenge.

Singing together as a class or a school has been shown to have a huge benefit on young people’s wellbeing, as well as improving a sense of school community.