BEAT Music Academy West

BEAT Music Academy West (formerly Hendon Music Centre) is a warm and friendly environment for your child to enjoy excellent musical training and experiences. It currently has five string groups and 3 wind bands of various abilities, including Barnet Youth String Orchestra, Rock 'n Pop groups, a jazz band, beginner string/woodwind/brass groups and sessions for Young Music Makers aged 4-7 years.. Concerts take place at the end of each term.

Saturday String Group Times

9.30-10.15 Beginners
9.30-12.00 Super Strings
9.30-12.00 Group 4
9.30-12.00 Finchley String Orchestra
9.30-12.00 Barnet Youth String Orchestra (auditioned flagship group)

String Groups

BEAT Music Academy West has various string groups and instrumental groups of varied standards, giving players the opportunity to play together at a level appropriate to their own abilities. Students are promoted through the groups usually at the end of every academic year. This gives them an opportunity to get to know each other well whilst being challenged by harder music as the year progresses. If you play a string instrument or would like to start learning we would love to see you at BEAT Music Academy West.

Absolute Beginner String Group

At BEAT Music Academy West we believe it is important to play an instrument in a group as soon as you start learning an instrument. Of course, you can join our higher groups at any stage but we have created an Absolute Beginners Group that players can join after as little as one lesson. This group takes place between 9.30-10.15am on Saturday mornings and is led by an experienced, specialist tutor.

Wind Bands

BEAT Music Academy West has various wind bands and instrumental groups of varied standards, giving players the opportunity to play together at a level appropriate to their own abilities. Students are promoted annually through the groups when ready. There are no auditions for this. The bands get to play regularly out and about in the community. If you play a woodwind, brass or percussion instrument we would love to see you at BMAW.

Beginner Groups

At BMAW we believe it is important to be involved in making music with others from as early as possible. Once your child can play four or five notes on their chosen instrument they can attend our beginner groups. These run for one hour and are led by experienced, specialist tutors.

Jazz Band

The Jazz Band runs for half an hour before the main bands every Saturday morning. Aimed at students of any instrument of grade 3 standard and above, the band covers music from a wide range of jazz styles from 1920's Glen Miller through to modern day jazz standards, film, TV themes and original pieces written especially for the band.

Young Music Makers (YMM)

YMM classes are for children of nursery age through to school Year 2. Classes aim to introduce children to the enjoyment of practical music making, and to develop musicianship skills from the earliest possible age. They will learn to sing, play the recorder and percussion instruments and understand basic music notation, rhythm and pitch, alongside learning social skills such as interacting in groups, and sharing a love and enthusiasm for music.

In the summer term, children have the opportunity to see and try various instrument to help them decide what they would like to go on and learn. they would like to learn, following a demonstration by our excellent musicians. Suitability tests take place  to ensure students choose an instrument suitable for them, and that they are of the correct age.

Instrumental lessons usually commence at the beginning of Year 2 for those taking up string instruments, and Year 3 for those taking up wind and brass. As part of our YMM offer children have the free loan of an instrument for the first year.

Instrumental and vocal lessons

We offer individual lessons on all string and most brass and woodwind instruments, guitar, piano and drum kit. Lessons are available to all children subject to availability and a suitability test.

BEAT Endangered Instrument Scheme 2020: The scheme is open to double bass, trombone and tuba.


Email [email protected]


To enrol your child, please email [email protected]. Or why not come and visit us on Saturday mornings - we're open from 8.30am-12.30pm.


We are located at the following address:
St Mary’s and St John’s School, Sunningfield Road, Hendon, NW4 4QR

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