The overall aim of the ECCO (Ethnic Contemporary Classical Orchestras) is to catalyse and inspire social change and creative engagement with cultural diversity, giving artistic expression to families and communities.
Established by Musiko Musika in 2009, and based at the Lyric Hammersmith the ECCO (Ethnic Contemporary Classical Orchestras), is a project to create youth music ensembles that reflect the diversity and musical interests of the young players and their families. Rooted in, but not constrained by tradition, the ECCO project is based on the concept of a classical orchestra but reaches far beyond it in terms of instrumentation, repertoire and approach. The ensemble currently incorporates violin, viola, cello, Kala U Bass, guitar, trumpet, sikus (panpipes), keyboard, tambora costeña, tambora Dominicana, bombo leguero, bombo criollo, cajón, guiro, chajchas, claves, campana, maracas Cubanas, mirdungam, tañador, Native Instruments’ Maschine and Yamaha drum pads. The parents and families of the young musicians are also directly involved in the project, singing and playing in the ensemble alongside their children, and having a key role in connecting the project culturally to the diverse communities of the families.
Photo by Harriet Armstrong
Photo by Harriet Armstrong
ECCO (Saturdays 10.15 - 12.15)
8 - 18 year olds with existing instrumental skills (application for membership by audition)
We rehearse and perform a repertoire of music that encompasses Europe, Africa, Asia and Latin America. Performing regularly at the Lyric and elsewhere this is an exciting and dynamic group of experienced young musicians.
If you would like to audition to join the ECCO please use the application form that can be downloaded on this page.
ECCO Electric Band (Saturdays 13.15 - 15.00)
12 - 18 year olds
The ECCO Electric Band is an advanced creative ensemble for existing members of the ECCO project. The young players work as a collective to develop new music and arrangements inspired by world music.
Please note that the ECCO Electric Band is only open to existing members of the ECCO
ECCO First Steps for Strings (Saturdays 13.30 - 14.30)
7 - 12 year olds, beginners welcome
The ECCO First Steps for Strings is an introduction for beginners to learning the violin and cello and playing music in an orchestra based on the ECCO model. This is a one-year course, instruments can be loaned if required.
Places are limited: to apply to join please complete the application form that can be downloaded on this page. Children and parents/ carers must attend an induction meeting before starting the course.
The ECCO is based at the Lyric Hammersmith.
For further information about the ECCO project, our auditions and applications procedure and criteria please email
Completed application forms should be emailed to
Download the application form here: