Changing Lives


Plymouth Music Zone's youngest ever participant was 9 days old - the oldest is 94 and counting. So many stories to tell. Stories of change. Stories of courage. Stories that inspire...

When a person first comes through the door at Plymouth Music Zone it means the world to us that they finally leave having had an experience that has had a truly positive impact. Whether it's feeling more confident, listened to, more self-expressed, less isolated and lonely, having made new friends, having a sense of achievement from creating something or performing in front of a crowd, feeling more valued and accepted for who they are, excited about their new found talent, or having a new found firm belief in themselves as a musician - some kind of difference that's meant the world to them...

Here are just a few of the PMZ stories where your support really does help music to make a difference...


In the space of just over a year 19 year old Shane's life has totally changed. Here are Shane's own thoughts on his time at PMZ...

What were you like before you came to PMZ?

"Before I came to PMZ I didn't want to do anything. Stuff was hard at home and I wasn't doing anything in general. I was like a nobody who just didn't care".

How did you come across PMZ and what did you do there?

"I went to the PLP at City College (Personalised Learning programme) because there was pressure to do something. 3 weeks in I got the chance to come to PMZ. I was massively underconfident then picked up a guitar and have been coming ever since. I spent 7 months doing PLP and learned a lot about being with people and finding out who they are and learned to express myself through music." 

"Then I did a work experience placement at PMZ over a year ago and it made such a big impression on me. It was on the 24 January, I remember the exact day. On the last day of that week I was offered a volunteer position to help with Jam Band after school club. Even though people didn't know me they treated me like part of the PMZ family. They made me feel at home and that felt amazing. After doing Jam Band I knew I wanted to be a music leader."

"5 months later I got details about PMZ's apprenticeship programme and just knew I wanted it. I took 3 weeks to perfect my application because I had never done that before and I went on the internet to get writing tips. I literally cried when I found out I got it. I was so happy.  I started that in September last year. It's just got better and better. My musicality is so much better and I've gone from picking up a guitar to a year later singing in pubs on open mic nights."

Has it changed you in any other way?

"It's totally changed me. Now I genuinely want to help people inside and out. It's been a real eye opener, you just don't realise what people go through. The best bit for me was being at Woodlands Special School with children who are non verbal and not mobile. After a while we had a massive breakthrough and this little girl just suddenly made a sound with the microphone, one day she just did it. I just had such a warm feeling. It's not like I have to do it, it's like I want to do it and it's like having the feeling of wanting to try and make everyone happy."

"I have definitely matured, I'm more caring about my friends and family, more careful about what I do and say. I think a lot more now. It's helped me become a bigger person. It means everything".

How has it changed how you think about your future?

"In the space of a year I've gone from being a 'nobody' to wanting to be a music leader and I want to do what I need to do to keep myself in this position and be in that kind of role. It's been dramatic in an amazing way. In all fairness I have you guys to thank. If PMZ wasn't around I'd probably be in the same position as back then."

"There are far more people out there that are far worse off than me. My perspective has changed. In this place you can speak to anyone."

Do you feel listened to?

"Hell yeah! Without a doubt. I have so much confidence. I could probably stand in front of a million people now in all fairness - it's never gonna happen but I could."


I could probably stand in front of a million people now in all fairness - it's never gonna happen but I could."
Shane Gray


The power of music is in your hands thank you.




























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