Transforming Communities

Temi – supporting the musical development of a child with autism

Live Music Now’s “Musicians in Residence” programme took place in 12 special schools across England. During the course of a year, each school hosted an LMN Musician in Residence who made weekly visits to work with small groups of pupils. There were also termly concerts by various LMN ensembles and a creative music and performance project in the final term, led by two additional LMN musicians.  This case study describes one pupil’s musical journey guided by LMN clarinetist, Jessie Grimes.


Temi is a nine year old boy with autism. He finds many things in the world around him confusing, which can make him feel anxious and stressed.  However, he loves music.  So when Jessie, a Live Music Now musician, started visiting his school to lead weekly music workshops as part of a “Musicians in Residence” programme funded by Youth Music, she was struck by his talent.  Initially he was disruptive and found it hard to concentrate in the group. However, after a few sessions he was hooked.  Not only did he develop his drumming and singing skills, but his behaviour improved, along with his focus and listening skills.  Performing a solo in front of friends and family at a special concert in the Horniman Museum demonstrated the great enjoyment and increased confidence Temi gets from music-making.