The Resound Ensemble is made up of musicians with disabilities.
The ensemble is a professional component within the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra in the UK.
“I think Resound is absolutely groundbreaking and has changed many people’s perception, and my own, of what actually music, as a professional musician, should be like,” explained flutist and ensemble member Kate Risdon.
Each musician in the six-person ensemble has a disability, making it the first ground led by musicians with disabilities in an orchestra’s core offering.
“I think you would struggle to name someone with a visible, physical disability you see live on stage who’s a musician,” linnstrument and ensemble member Charlotte Bott said. “When I was first drawn to music, I had no way to express myself. I couldn’t talk and had very limited movement. And it became the first control I had over my environment.”
The musicians seamlessly adapt their disabilities to the work often with adapted instruments or sheet music.
Conductor James Rose helped form the ensemble. As a musician with cerebral palsy, he knows what it’s like to fight for proper training and opportunities.
“I would say that people tend to have misconception about the abilities of people who have disabilities,” he explained. “I’ve had a lot of people doubt my capabilities, not just a conductor but as a human being.”
Resound was the first disability-led ensemble to play at the Proms, a prestigious music series broadcast on the BBC.