Sue Simmonds

As one of the founding members of Soundabout, for the past 20 years, Sue has been instrumental in developing and sustaining Soundabout’s mission to use music and sound to provide opportunities for self-expression for all people with physical disabilities as well as various complex needs across the age span, including sensory disabilities. Her particular interest is in providing for those with profound and multiple learning disabilities (PMLD) and with Autism (ASD).

Sue’s main and sustained focus has been instilling confidence in those who support people with learning disabilities to believe that they can use musical ideas to provide meaningful opportunities for self-expression, active participation and building relationships. She has also just completed a PG Certificate in Sounds of Intent and taken part in researching musical development in young children in children’s centres across the country.

Isabel Bedford

Isabel first joined Soundabout in 2013, initially as an Intern and then becoming a fully-fledged Soundabout practitioner in 2014.

Isabel has experience of running interactive music sessions for people across the age span with complex needs in both community settings and schools. She has worked on a wide variety of Soundabout projects including Little Soundabout and Soundabout Life, Sound Potential Berkshire, Sounds Wild, Sounds of Intent in the Early Years and Baby Soundabout. She also delivers training for Soundabout in various aspects of interactive music-making.

As well as working for Soundabout, Isabel also works as a music practitioner, Music Therapist and project coordinator for other arts and health organisations. She holds an MA in Music Therapy, PGCert in Music and Special Needs, MMus in Ethnomusicology and a BMus in Music.

Pete Ord

Pete Ord is a Producer, Musician and Educator based in the East of England. A Community musician for the over 5 years Pete trained with acclaimed arts company Whitewood and Fleming and has experience working with SEND, Looked After Children, Youth Offenders, PRU and Vulnerable Adults. Specialising in assistive music technologies and songwriting Pete uses aspects of both in all his creative work. Having completed a PGCert in Music and Special Needs in 2014 Pete delivers creative sessions, as well as training for Soundabout focused on creative pupil lead music making often incorporating Skoog, Soundbeam and iPads.

Will Taggart

BA Composition and Professional Practice – Coventry University, 2006.

PG Cert Music and Special Needs: ‘Sounds of Intent’ – Roehampton University, 2016.

Music Educator and Performer. Will has been working for 10 years as a music teacher in both Mainstream and Special Education and performing in professional bands on Bass Guitar and Saxophone. Currently working in a primary setting for children with Social Emotional and Mental Health Difficulties Will is the Creative Arts Lead providing 1 to 1 and group sessions. Will gained an internship with the charity in early 2015 working on the national launch of the Sounds of Intent in the Early Years project. Following on from this he received a sponsorship by Soundabout to complete the PGCert Music and Special Needs: ‘Sounds of Intent’. Now working as a Soundabout music practitioner Will is part of the Sounds of Intent in the Early Years team and has developed the Sounds Modern project with Pete Ord.

Felicity Corbyn

Felicity Corbyn has a degree in English/ Drama which included set design and an MA in Special Needs. As a primary/nursery teacher, she created a wide range of environments for themes and plays that she used to run every summer for many years. She has been a Soundabout practitioner since 2006, working in SEN schools around the country and is responsible for setting up Soundabout’s festivals, planning, resourcing and creating themes such as ‘The Quest’, ‘The Amazon Rain Forest’ and ‘Caribbean Carnival’. Felicity successfully completed her PGCert in Music and Special Needs in 2014.

Stephen Pratley

Steve Pratley has over 20 years’ experience of working in the areas of creativity, music and communication in Special Needs Education. He has been a Soundabout practitioner since its formation in 1998. Steve is also co-director of Flash of Splendour Arts, a community arts organisation which specialises in creating ground-breaking exhibitions with young people with autism and learning disabilities, and a trustee of the Exuberant Trust which assists young Oxfordshire musicians and creative artists. Steve is currently undertaking the PGCert in Music and Special Needs during 2016/17.

Matthew Dear

Matthew Dear is a graduate of Anglia Ruskin University, Colcheter Institute, where he studied piano and flute performance. He completed the EPTA Piano Teachers Course and PGCert Sounds of Intent with Soundabout in 2013-14. Matthew also has a UCERT (Autism Spectrum ) with the University of Birmingham.
He has spent several years working in China where he helped to establish an early intervention centre for children with Autism, delivering music sessions and also training local music teachers.
He now continues to work with other charities and his local music service, particularly focused on working with children with autism and complex needs. He delivers in-school training, multi-sensory, early years and Sounds of Intent training with Soundabout.

Karen Nicholson

Karen graduated as a mature student from the University of Birmingham on the flute in July 2018. During her time at university Karen volunteered for the Coventry Alzheimer’s Society Singing for the Brain group, and Melody Music Birmingham.  During the end of her final year Karen gained an internship with the charity and joined the Soundabout family. She then went on to complete her PGCert in music and special needs in 2019.  Her interest in music and disabilities comes from the love of her uncle whom had additional learning needs and was quite the one man band with his keyboard and harmonica!

Lauren Storey

Lauren graduated from Birmingham Conservatoire on the French horn and then completed her PGCert in Music and Special Needs: Sounds of intent in 2017. When studying for her A Levels it was suggested to Lauren that she volunteered with Y-Not Arts, a charity in Northampton that provide music, dance and drama to children and young people with additional needs. Lauren has since volunteered with other organisations to gain insight into this work and is very keen to learn all things Soundabout!

Rebecca Holman

Becca graduated from the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire in 2018 with a BMus Hons. Although the french horn was her primary focus, she had a developing interest in providing music for communities and people with additional needs. During her time at Conservatoire, Becca volunteered with Music Melody Birmingham which gave her the experience of inclusive music making. In September 2019 Becca gained a place on the PGCert in Music and Special Needs (Sounds of Intent) course at the University of Roehampton, alongside starting her Music Intern position with Soundabout.

Georgie Lockett

Georgie graduated from the University of Birmingham in 2019 with a music degree, and a desire to work in music education and community music. During university, she volunteered with a playscheme for children with additional needs and wanted to combine this work with her love of music. After graduation, she became a part of the Soundabout family as a music intern, and began the PGCert in Music and Special Needs (Sounds of Intent).