Discovering Brass

Our award-winning project aims to support and invigorate the cultural heritage of brass playing. We strongly believe that music has the power to change lives and for the past two years have been bringing people together to learn and play brass instruments and connect through music.

Central to our project is the Discovering Brass teaching programme in which young people get to learn a ‘beginner’ trumpet (a natural trumpet) in the comfort of their own home or through selected primary schools. Discovering Brass is an interdisciplinary programme that uses the natural trumpet to teach not only music, but also aspects of science, history, anthropology and modern language. Since July 2020 we have taught around 260 children how to play the natural trumpet and over 50% of these are still playing brass instruments today. Watch an online a Discovering Brass lesson led by our wonderful tutor Tony George here:

Learn the trumpet at home, Angus and Clackmannanshire (2022-2023)

Next academic year we are offering children in selected areas of Angus and Clackmannanshire the chance to join our Discovering Brass programme and learn the trumpet at home for free! Lessons are delivered for 16 weeks via Zoom in small groups and focus on learning the basics of brass in a fun and inclusive digital environment. After this, participants can choose to connect with a brass band and continue their learning on a brass instrument. The programme includes the following elements:

  • One ‘beginner’ natural trumpet delivered to your home on loan until March 2023
  • 16 x 30-minute trumpet lessons via Zoom taught in small groups from September 2022 to February 2023
  • Discovering Brass lessons are taught in Angus on Mondays between 4-6pm
  • Discovering Brass lessons are taught in Clackmannanshire on Fridays between 4-6pm
  • Access to online support material via the StAMP Brass website
  • A community progression programme to join a local brass band in March 2023
  • The opportunity to take part online and in person in interdisciplinary StAMP events and concerts

Discovering Brass application criteria:

  • Children living in Clackmannanshire (in the Alloa area particularly)
  • Or children living in Angus (in the Arbroath, Carnoustie and Monifieth areas particularly)
  • Children aged between 7 – 12 years

 Priority will be given to:

  • Children who don’t already learn or play an instrument
  • Children who might not otherwise have the opportunity or means to take part in music

To take part you need:

  • To attend weekly sessions and commit to practice between lessons
  • To read and agree to the code of conduct in the Laidlaw Music Centre Online Safety Guidelines
  • To complete an instrument loan agreement and return the trumpet at the end of the programme
  • Access to a digital device with reliable internet connection is beneficial

Further information

Music is a skill that requires dedication, hard work, time and effort. You have to commit to the learning process regardless of how you are learning, and this is even more important in the “virtual” world. At the end of the Discovering Brass lessons, participants will have opportunity to opt in to continue their learning with either:

The Clackmannan District Brass Band. Their youth band meets on Tuesdays at 5pm in Alloa. Or the Arbroath Instrumental Band. Their youth band meets on Mondays at 6.30pm in Carnoustie. We will send full details to all participants in February 2023.

Application Process

All applicants need to read this information and decide whether this opportunity is right for them and their family situation at this time. Parental engagement and support is vital during the music learning process. If you would like to apply for Discovering Brass, please click on the relevant application form below:

ANGUS online application form

CLACKS online application form

Application deadline is Friday 1 July at 5pm.

You will be notified if you have a place on Discovering Brass by 15 July.

If you require any further information, please contact:

StAMP Brass | Laidlaw Music Centre | University of St Andrews


Text: 07874 792803


You can watch previous Discovering Brass participants in our StAMP Brass concerts on the Music from St Andrews YouTube channel. These include the StAMP Brass Camp Finale Concert, Under Stars and Satellites, and Ebb & Flow.


Download our Discovering Brass Guide Book written by John Miller

Practice online with our musicianship teacher Claire