Some of the necessary qualities for a teenager to develop is resilience. This entails their potential to beat adversity.

Resilience is maybe extra necessary now than ever. At the moment’s younger individuals have been going through adversity on a mass-scale, because of COVID and all of the disruptions to their training and social, residence and dealing lives.

The excellent news is, resilience isn’t just one thing you might be born with. It may be discovered from our experiences and interactions with others.

Dad and mom might not be conscious that one technique to develop resilience is thru group music making, resembling in a college or neighborhood choir, orchestra or band.

Our analysis

We needed to research how group music making can develop expertise past simply studying to play an instrument or sing.

Our examine is predicated on the Tasmanian Youth Orchestras, which embody achieved musicians aged from 14 to 25. This consists of the state youth orchestra in addition to two different orchestras, specialist ensembles and two choirs.

For our undertaking, we collected feedback from gamers, managers and conductors/academics on a closed Fb web site after which did eight follow-up interviews.

Our findings present how qualities like teamwork, empathy and grit – all elements of resilience – could be developed by means of group music making.

Learn extra: Self-compassion is the superpower 12 months 12 college students want for exams … and life past faculty


To ensure that a bunch of gamers to make a bit of music work, they need to work collectively.

Individuals need to pay attention to one another, perceive what is occurring round them, and be ready to vary how they play one thing (gradual or quick, loud or gentle) relying on how the group is performing. You want to have the ability to worth the contributions of different individuals, not simply your personal.

So, we discovered in case you are taking part in in a band, you might be studying staff work expertise. As David*, a conductor instructed us:

After some time, gamers realised that they had been in the end accountable to the opposite gamers to not the conductor.


Gamers additionally want to have the ability to perceive others in a bunch and share their emotions.

In a choir or orchestra, the music making is a shared inventive expertise – that entails the entire physique. And that is the place empathy is available in.

Empathy, like teamwork, could be cumulative, rising over time by means of rehearsals and performances, as gamers and academics help each other. As brass participant Tom stated,

I’ve to know that I’m not at all times going to be the primary focus of a bit.

One other participant, Simon, instructed us about his realisation that different individuals had been additionally having to work exhausting (and it wasn’t nearly him).

You definitely aren’t the one individual having to practise your doubles [playing two notes at once] for that piece.


It is crucial for younger individuals to develop a “development mindset”, the place they perceive effort makes them stronger and studying is a long-term dedication.

That is the place grit additionally is available in: pursing a objective and sticking with it even when it takes quite a lot of work or will get troublesome.

It will possibly take many months to be taught a bit of music as much as efficiency normal. And studying an instrument requires follow each day. So dedication is a key a part of studying music.

Lawrence, a participant, instructed us about taking part in his faculty musical:

There have been many factors all year long which I felt like giving up […] however it was one thing I had dedicated to […]. I saved engaged on taking part in the music to one of the best of my potential, even when it felt like I couldn’t do it.

Tory, a choir conductor, described efficiency as each “secure and unsafe”. Younger individuals in a choir be taught to take care of the sudden as a part of efficiency. And this takes a form a bravery.

You’ve received security in numbers, to some extent, however you might be nonetheless entering into the unknown each time you stroll on stage to do a factor. You possibly can depend on one another, since you’ve rehearsed, however stuff does go pear formed. Stuff occurs […] It’s an extremely helpful life talent to have the ability to go, ‘nicely, that sucked’ […] and go, all proper ‘let’s [go again]’.

Why music?

However what’s so particular about music in fostering resilience? Younger individuals additionally work in sporting groups or tutorial assignments. They will additionally work collectively whereas taking part in video games.

Taking part in music provokes exercise in many alternative elements of the mind on the similar time. Listening to music that we like triggers the pleasure/reward centre of the mind. Dopamine and serotonin are launched, leading to that “really feel good” sensation, and offering an incentive to maintain partaking with music.


Studying a musical instrument additionally strengthens connections within the mind, linking the auditory cortex to elements of the mind concerned within the processing of complicated info. This hyperlink has been proven to enhance reminiscence, motor features and studying in different topic areas.

Making music with others additionally impacts ranges of the bonding hormone oxytocin, supporting a way of togetherness, whereas lowering ranges of the stress hormone cortisol, andboosting immune perform.

For younger individuals, music can present precious respite from examine and each day life, and assist handle and specific their feelings.

So, if you need your youngster to be a staff participant who’s empathetic and reveals grit, our analysis means that becoming a member of a music group may very well be the reply.

*names have been modified