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Anjana Rinne (she/they)

I am an early years music practitioner, the first person in London to hold a CME:EC and I run my own small business, Mini Mindful Musicians.

I am passionate about creating inclusive, diverse and equal musical learning experiences for families.

One of my favourite experiences has been, working with lockdown babies including running session at the V&A. To have a positive impact on people’s mental health is one of the best things I have ever done. I incoorpate mindfulness within my sessions and take a very gentle & child-led approach. This has a wonderful effect on children’s and their parent or carers wellbeing.
I stay away from traditional nursery rhymes and any kinds of stereotypes, educating families about the beauty of diversity, equality and inclusion.

My own experiences as a child inspired me to help create stronger, mentally well children and have an impact on their little lives but also educate parents about various topics to help understand, listen and support their children.


Bazil Meade (he/him)

Bazil Meade MBE – Co-Founder and Creative Director of London Community Gospel Choir

Born in the Montserrat, Bazil Meade is the charismatic and multi-talented vocalist, pianist and leader of Europe’s premier vocal ensemble, the London Community Gospel Choir. Moving to England at aged nine family circumstances caused him to leave home in his teens. His ambition was to bring the two fundamental aspects of his life together, his faith and music, to inspire and entertain audiences. Having built up a legion of dedicated fans the choir perform regularly to audiences all over the world.

Many of the greatest musical artists have called upon the services of Bazil and the choir including Madonna, Sting, Sir Paul McCartney, Brian May, Tina Turner, Diana Ross, Luther Vandross and Kylie Minogue. Bazil can turn his hand to any type of genre and his and the choir’s versatility have made them the first point of call for soulful vocals for high profile concerts and recordings.

As well as with the choir, Bazil runs his own vocal workshops around the world and also the Bazil Meade Experience – Bazil on keys with 3 backing vocals and the band, an imitate performance.

His book A Boy, A Journey, A Dream tells the story of his life with the choir. The foreword written by Sir George Martin.

Awarded the MBE in 2018 for Services to Gospel Music. If you talk about British Gospel Music you are talking about Bazil!


Lisa Cherry (she/her)

Lisa Cherry is an author and a leading international trainer and consultant, specialising in assisting those in Education, Social Care and Adoption and Fostering to understand trauma, recovery and resilience for vulnerable children, young people and their families. Lisa has over 30 years of experience in this field and combines academic knowledge and research with professional skills and personal experience.

Lisa’s MA research looked at the impact on education and employment for care experienced adults who experienced school exclusion as children in the 1970’s and 1980’s. Currently, Lisa is undertaking her DPhil studies at The University of Oxford in the Department of Education, asking the research question “How do care-experienced adults understand being excluded from school in relation to ‘belonging?”

Lisa is the author of the hugely successful book ‘Conversations that make a difference for Children and Young People’


Miss Jacqui (she/her)

Miss Jacqui … a Poet and Songwriter, knows a lot about working with the cards that you are dealt. Especially because she is someone who always tries to challenge societal perceptions, like what it actually means to be a black woman with a disability. A wheelchair user herself Miss Jacqui wants her poetry and music to help her listeners see the world differently, and inspire others to feel confident in being themselves.“When you are a minority in a minority in a minority, you have no choice but to stand out.” – Miss Jacqui Her love for Spoken Word/Poetry came to light in 2011, when she joined “Poets Platform” led by Kat Francois who is a well-known performance poet on the global poetry scene. It’s why Miss Jacqui care about the lyrical content in her work. She wants her work to be accessible for all while carrying a strong message to help people see the world differently, so that she can inspire and make people feel comfortable about being themselves. As well as being an ambassador for multiple organisations that she holds close to her heart. Especially because equality, community, and exploring different art forms is something that Miss Jacqui is passionate about as well as positive change. Since then Miss Jacqui has performed at various locations like the 2012 Paralympic Team Welcoming Ceremonies, Southbank Centre, and Roundhouse to name a few. Some of Miss Jacqui influences include music that focuses on a storytelling. Miss Jacqui believes that creativity can be a universal language and in her spare time, she is devoted to the exploration of poetry, music, songwriting, and of course performing. “I want to break as many stereotypes as possible when it comes to me being a black woman with a disability.” – Miss Jacqui


Paul Whittaker (he/him)

Paul Whittaker was born Deaf in 1964 yet has pursued a music career despite this. After gaining a music degree from Wadham College, Oxford, and a Post-graduate diploma from the RNCM he founded a charity “Music and the Deaf” which he ran for 27 years. Since 2015 he has worked freelance, continuing to promote music and deafness and encouraging access and inclusion for D/deaf people.

Paul has also worked as a theatre, opera and concert interpreter, working on shows such as Les Miserables, West Side Story, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and many others; at the BBC Proms, Edinburgh Festival, Aldeburgh Festival; with The Sixteen, Halle Orchestra, Royal Northern Sinfonia, Britten Sinfonia and Opera North.

During lockdown he has created many BSL resources for choirs, music services and hubs, and worked with the Stay at Home Choir, Oxford Bach Soloists, NYCGB Alumni and NYCOS.


Roger Wilson (he/him)

Roger Wilson is co-founder of Black Lives in Music, an initiative dedicated to addressing better representation throughout the music industry.  He has many of years of experience on both sides of the stage as musician, educator, tour manager and administrator.  Conservatoire trained, he has worked extensively in the commercial, jazz and classical sector with a wide range of artists from Lesley Garett and Bryn Terfel to James Brown and Quincey Jones.   As an instrumental teacher and lecturer, Roger has worked throughout the UK music education sector at all levels. In recent years, he has been dedicated to the professional development of aspiring young musicians.  He is and continues to be a champion of social justice.


Shahana Knight (she/her)

Shahana Knight is the founder and director of TPC therapy Ltd. A mental health service for children and young people. Shahana manages a team of play therapists who work with children in schools, adoption, fostering and homicide. She is also the founder of the ‘Therapeutic Schools Programme’ through which she is working with schools across England to put children’s wellbeing at the core of education. Pioneering a vision for all schools to become therapeutic schools. Her unique approach is making a significant impact and has been recognised by BBC newsround and BBC Teach who have both done features in which Shahana has appeared. Shahana is a finalist in the upcoming Ladies first awards 2020, in both categories ‘inspirational women’ and ‘business entrepreneur’. Shahana writes a regular segment in Head Teachers Update, the national magazine for primary schools, sharing therapeutic teaching ideas and techniques. She is also governor of a primary school and sits on two foster care panels.


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