Education Projects

Discovering Lieder (KS2) and Cool Lieder (KS3).

Leeds Lieder inspires hundreds of children to discover and engage with classical song and excellent singing practice through their award-winning education projects: Discovering Lieder (KS2) and Cool Lieder (KS3).

We offer exciting opportunities for young people in primary and secondary schools across Leeds to broaden their cultural horizons, explore their talents, discover and develop their voices through a series of specially devised projects. 

We promote access to classical music for people who would not otherwise have the opportunity or who may be on the fringes of society, and we strive to educate and encourage young people to engage with music in and outside of school.

We believe that a musical education is essential to the social and personal development of young people and are proud to work alongside music teachers to provide this in schools and help every child find their voice.

Discovering Lieder introduces primary school children to the joys of attending a classical concert and invites them into the wonderful world of stories and characters found in Art Song. It runs over one intensive week with a culmination concert on the Friday. Each school is visited for a one-hour session with our team who present Lieder as a fun and relevant art form and the children even write their own verse to a song by Schubert!

On the concert day 300 children from 10 schools across the Leeds come together and are treated to a concert of Lieder. They hear songs by Schubert, Poulenc, Head and Dove all in their original language and perform their very own verses to round off a wonderful week!

Cool Lieder works with secondary school children to develop their musical and singing abilities whilst exploring the rich vein of Art Song. At an age where children may struggle to communicate their emotions, we encourage them to express themselves through music. The project runs over a month and involves our specialist team making three workshop visits into schools and working with participants on singing, musicianship, storytelling, creative thinking and performance practice leading towards a culmination concert.

 All our projects are led by exceptional creative artists and encourage healthy bodies and minds, active imaginations, social awareness and a sense of achievement among participants.


For more information about our projects, or if you would like to get involved, please contact Phil Wilcox.

 Discovering Lieder was recently chosen as a recipient of an ACA Member’s 2019 Award.

Read more about the award here.

Discovering Lieder

Spring 2019


Be inspired by the creative experience of exploring songs and words of great composers and poets; use your own instrument – the voice – to engage with great art and to create your own songs.

Cool Lieder

Spring 2019


Explore and share musical ideas and develop aural awareness. Discover how notation, chord sequences, beat, time signature and melodic shape are used to create a sound-world and shape a story and that you don’t need a microphone to produce a mind-blowing vocal sound!

Discovering Lieder

Classical Song Project for KS2

An interactive introduction to classical song and attending a concert.

The Discovering Lieder Project runs for one intensive week in March when each primary school is visited for one hour by our team. During this hour the children explore the joys of attending a concert of Art Song and the artists help to present Lieder as a fun and relevant artform, full of characters and stories, that can excite the imagination and stimulate the mind.

On the concert day 300 children aged 9-11 from 10 schools across the Leeds area filled the Town Hall and were treated to a concert of Lieder. Myself (baritone), Charlie Trepess (soprano) and Ewan Gilford (piano) performed songs by Schubert, Poulenc, Head and Dove all in their original language. A picture selected for each song was beamed onto a big screen behind the stage and the children were not given written translations of the texts, allowing their imaginations to run wild! In what’s definitely a Leeds Lieder Education tradition, the concert finale was a mass-sing of Schubert’s Das Wandern, with each class singing their own verse specially written by them in the workshop sessions.


Here’s an example verse (to the tune of Das Wandern, Schubert):

Once there was a little girl skipping in the wood.

‘Round the corner was her friend, Red Riding Hood.

Jolly men in the pub dancing to an Irish jig,

An alpaca, a llama, a pig in a wig.

They took the yellow-brick-road

To a ball hosted by a toad!

We would like to say a big “Thank you” to staff and children from the participating schools:

Burley St Matthias Primary

Castleton Primary

Chapel Allerton Primary

Grimes Dyke Primary

Hawksworth Wood Primary

Stanningley Primary

Weetwood Primary

Westerton Primary

Whinmoor St Paul’s Primary

White Laith Primary

Discovering Lieder workshops and concert are free to participating schools.

We’d love your school to get involved so, if you’re interested in taking part in future projects, please get in touch!  You can contact Rebecca Emery, the Festival Administrator by phone: 0113 234 6956 (Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, voice mail at other times) or by email to: 

Cool Lieder

Classical Song Project for KS3

Discover some of the great composers’ repertoire of songs and perform them in choirs, small ensembles or as soloists.

The Cool Lieder Project involves our specialist team making visits into secondary schools to rehearse the children for a culmination concert at Leeds Town Hall. Richard Robbins (tenor, animateur), Nick Hennessey (storyteller) and Jenny Martins (pianist) made three workshop visits into each school throughout March and worked with the children on singing, musicianship, storytelling, creative thinking and performance practice. Teachers were encouraged to be actively involved, teaching and rehearsing the songs with their students in between visits by the creative team.

On the concert day over 150 children aged 12-14 from 6 schools across the Leeds area came down to the Town Hall and performed a fantastic programme of Art Song. I was struck and heartened by the quality of both the singing and the listening that occurred that morning. Each class group performed with confidence and expression, and the audience seemed truly engaged and moved by the experience.

Students from six Leeds secondary schools took part in the Cool Lieder project and concert 2019:

Carr Manor Community School

Corpus Christi Catholic College

Crawshaw Academy

Grammar School at Leeds

Prince Henry’s Grammar School

Rodillian Academy

The Cool Lieder Song Book (available to download as a free resource for schools here) contains 10 specially selected songs, newly translated with simple accompaniments for teaching purposes alongside the original.  Teaching notes are provided for each song.

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