‘It's appalling that music is neglected in schools’ – Andrew Lloyd Webber

5 January 2018, 16:58 | Updated: 5 January 2018, 16:59

Andrew Lloyd Webber has spoken out about the empowering force of music, and the disastrous effect of music cuts in schools in a brand new Classic FM show.

Speaking to fellow composer Howard Goodall for their new Classic FM show The Sound of Music, Andrew Lloyd Webber delivered a fiery statement regarding cuts to music education.

“I think it’s an appalling thing that music is so neglected now in our schools,” he said. “I mean, my foundation in our very tiny way, we’ve got 6,000 kids now who get a free music lesson every week in the city schools in London – but it’s a drop in the ocean.”

Last year, Lloyd Webber donated £1.4 million from his own foundation to a scheme that gives free music lessons to school children.

“What the government should be grasping is that every penny you spend on music – not to turn people into musicians, but music as an empowering force – comes back to you in tenfold.

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“When you hear that the Brit school, which is doing a fantastic job as a free school, is having trouble because the funding’s there up to 16 years old, but it’s being withdrawn by the government to some extent, between 16 and 18... you say, hang on a moment – has it not occurred to the Chancellor of the Exchequer what they’re making out of Adele or Amy Winehouse?”

For more conversation between Howard Goodall and Andrew Lloyd Webber, listen to their six-part series, The Sound of Music, every Saturday at 9pm on Classic FM.