Created by Jane Cutler and Michelle Groves, the DaCapo Music Foundation exists to develop, deliver and disseminate high-quality, child-centred music education.
Jane Cutler, Founder & Principal
Jane is the musical founder of DaCapo. Together with Michelle Groves, she has been researching and testing the DaCapo approach to musical education with children for over twenty five years, fine-tuning the best methods, approaches and resources needed for an effective music education.
DaCapo receives extensive recognition for the high level of quality and commitment that it brings to the world of music education.
Jane trained as a cellist at Trinity College of Music. In 1986 she began to work within the famous Tower Hamlets Strings Project, where she came into contact with both the Kodaly method and the Dalcroze method. Here, she also had the opportunity to work alongside some of the most inspirational teachers of the time. She went on to study the Kodaly method for three years at the Kodaly Centre of London (David Vinden).
"Due to the Kodaly and Dalcoze techniques, my pupils were suddenly able to play in tune, play what they heard by ear and also sing from the music on the page before playing! The beauty of all of this approach is just how extraordinarily effective and simple it is."
Michelle Groves, Founder & CEO
Michelle met Jane Cutler in the late 1980s when Jane taught Michelle's daughters. Michelle was inspired by her ideas and together they decided to establish DaCapo, with a growing determination to make a difference in musical education.
Over the last 25 years, Michelle has guided DaCapo's growth from a local organisation into one which both delivers and influences music teaching in many different settings, across the UK and overseas.
Neil Pardoe, Vice Principal
Neil began teaching with DaCapo nearly twenty years ago and has been a Senior Teacher for several years. He is responsible for DaCapo schools’ work (including concerts and parents meetings), classroom music, training and - alongside the senior teachers - mentoring trainee teachers in their first year with DaCapo.
Neil also teaches one-to-one lessons on bassoon, clarinet, saxophone and piano, and conducts both the Primary and Secondary Orchestras. At the DaCapo Saturday Centre he teaches one-to-one lessons and ensembles and is a mentor for other teachers.
He graduated from the Guildhall Hall School of Music & Drama, where he studied the bassoon with Meyrick Alexander, Robin O’Neill and Ian Cuthill. He has a varied performing career, playing in orchestras, chamber groups, recording sessions and at music festivals. He has also worked in music-education publishing as a Music Education Editor.
Other members of the team
DaCapo’s original teaching resources are produced by our in-house publishing company under Ali Judge. New materials are regularly created by composer in residence, John Ashton Thomas, and writer in residence, Tracey Mathias. Caron Garrity is our Saturday Centre Manager, Andrew Field, is our Schools' Manager, Roanna Winter is our Accounts Manager, and Chloe Lyons is our Marketing Manager.
DaCapo's work depends above all on an inspirational team of teachers, all expert musicians trained in DaCapo’s unique approach.