Write, Record and Perform!

A Holiday Course for Young Musicians

Course Details

Date Monday 07 August 2017
Time 10:00 AM
Venue Leeds College of Music
Duration Monday 7 - Thursday 10 August 2017; 10am – 4pm
Tutor Tutors: Lee Smith & Krishna Thiruchelvam
Fee £150.00
Age 10–18

The Course

Do you know a young musician who would like to play in a band, write songs, experience working in a professional recording studio and perform a live gig?

As part of our programme for young musicians, we’re running four inspirational days of creative music making and workshops for aspiring young performers in the summer holidays under the guidance of talented tutors Lee and Krish.

This course will equip young musicians with new approaches to songwriting, as well as the experience of working in a recording studio, ideas on how to rehearse effectively as well as strategies to problem solve and prepare effectively for performance.

Working in a creative and supportive environment builds confidence. Teamwork, communication and creativity will be encouraged throughout the four days, with young musicians learning transferable skills. There will be plenty of opportunities to network and meet new friends; we should mention that this course promises to be a lot of fun too!

What is included?

Write: Young musicians will be shown a variety of techniques and ideas to start writing a song, and will build on this to look at lyric writing, chords and melodies. 
Record: Young musicians will learn how to set up microphones and equipment, record in a studio using a mixing desk, and layer sounds. Towards the end of the week they will take part in recording sessions to record their new songs to take away after the course.
Perform: Young musicians will be given advice on how to present themselves on stage and performance stagecraft. To celebrate the week’s work, they will showcase the songs they've written on the course in an informal performance for family and friends on the Thursday afternoon.

Who is it for?

This course is specially designed for young musicians who are looking for inspiration and techniques to create songs, as well as the creative use of music technology to write, record and mix music and to learn about working in the studio environment. Musicians, composers and songwriters alike will be inspired by new ways of creating songs and pieces to be showcased on the last day.
To get the most out of this course, we recommend that young instrumentalists and vocalists have at least two years of music making experience. Participants will be placed in two groups by age and experience with places in each group limited to eight participants.

Listen to the work of the groups on our Summer 2016 holiday course for young musicians:

Watch this video of participants from one of our holiday courses with Lee and Krish back in August to find out why they think this is a fantastic course.


Lee Smith is a professional music producer. He works from his studio in Leeds, which specialises in a hybrid of modern digital and classic analogue music production. His work spans across many genres from pop to rock and dance. Recent production credits include: Ellie Goulding, Submotion Orchestra, Pulled Apart by Horses and The Cribs. When Lee is not working with bands and artists in the studio he also works as a freelance sound designer and composer producing music for TV and Film. Recent projects include music for EA Games, EMI publishing, Universal publishing and Volkswagen.

Krishna Thiruchelvam is a professional musician, workshop practitioner and guitar teacher. Working both locally in Leeds and nationally, Krishna leads sessions on new ways of teaching music at the London Guildhall School of Music and is one of the original researchers and writers of the Leeds hub for Musical Futures (www.musicalfutures.org). His workshops, designed when developing Musical futures, are now used across schools worldwide.

Both Lee and Krish play in Leeds based band Middleman. The band have developed a strong international following over the last few years and have played Leeds and Reading Festivals, SXSW (Texas) and much of Germany, Holland and Belgium after signing to Suburban Records.

Lee and Krish have delivered our three day summer school, ‘Studio and Songwriting for Young Musicians’ for the past four years with great success.  We are delighted to invite them back this August to deliver this extended version of the course.


Bursaries may be available to those 18 years and under who live in a Leeds Council Tax postcode area from low income households*. Bursaries may be granted for those in receipt of:

Income Support
Incapacity Benefit
Job Seekers' Allowance
Those whose children are eligible for free school meals via Pupil Premium indicators
Looked after children
Asylum seeker with letter from the Home Office indicating their child is eligible for free school meals
Discretionary fee waiver for other reasons

Please note that neither Family Tax Credit nor Disability Living Allowance qualify for automatic fee waiver.

You must register your interest in applying for a bursary at least four weeks prior to the start date of the course.
These bursaries have been made available by The Leeds Music Education Partnership. Please note that we cannot guarantee that funding will be available. Please email shortcourses@lcm.ac.uk for further details.

*Only available up to a maximum of £100 per bursary applicant. In all cases, the recipient must pay a minimum of one third of the course fee.



We are pleased to be able to offer an accommodation package at Liberty Dock in Leeds City Centre for this Summer School for participants aged 16+.  Under 16s can also book accommodation for this Summer School on the condition that a parent or guardian also books a room. Full details can be found on our Summer School Accommodation page (opens in a new tab).

If you would like to book accommodation, please ensure that you read the information on the accommodation page before completing the course booking form and payment.

Book a place on this course


"I loved meeting other people my age, and having fun with everybody creating music."

Course participant, August 2016

"I learnt to be confident in the studio and how to collaborate my style with other people".

Course participant, August 2016

"My favourite part of the course was recording with everyone and learning from our mistakes each take."

Course participant, August 2016


"I'm so glad we made the journey up from Hertfordshire. Both of our children who attended loved being with similar aged and similar minded musicians. They are already talking about coming back for more! I'm also pleased to say that composing and recording are continuing at home. Thanks to you all for putting on a great course with such inspiring and energetic leaders."

A.Roberts, Parent


Current LCoM Saturday Music School students receive 10% discount on all short courses for Young Musicians. To claim your discount, please contact the Short Courses team by telephone, stating the name of your chosen course.





Find out more

What's On

Our packed concert season welcomes everyone from global stars to up-and-coming talents – and Leeds College of Music students are always at the heart of the programme

Booking Information

Book tickets online, by telephone, in person at the box office or by post, and take advantage of special offers and discounts, including discounts for group bookings

How to find us

Visiting us by car or public transport? See how to reach us, wherever you're coming from – and find your way around campus