Leeds Silver Steel Sparrows formed in 1999 with just five young players. It has gone from strength to strength, getting through to the first Music For Youth National Festival in 2005, and winning the overall UK World Music Award in 2009, culminating in a slot at the Schools Proms at the Royal Albert Hall the same year, and then the Festival Hall, Southbank in 2010 for the Festival of Britain.
Since then the Sparrows regularly play for local and national conferences and events, including Breeze on Briggate, Harrogate International Festival, and Leeds Town and Civic Halls for all sorts of civic ceremonies. To reach these high standards students have to put the work in. Previous experience playing is not necessary, as not all schools offer steel pans. Playing another instrument is certainly helpful, but not important.
Players are not formally auditioned; they are usually recommended by their music teachers, but anyone can try out.
Conductor: Victoria Jaquiss and Chris Greer