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Jobs: Inspiring our musical youth; Job interview.

Byline: By MICHELLE RUSHTON

AS THE director of Liverpool and Merseyside Youth Music Action Zone (MZONE), Francisco Carrasco is helping young people in Merseyside to develop their musical talents.

Since MZONE (an initiative funded by National Youth Music) was set up in 2001, more than 5,000 young people from Merseyside have been involved in a wide variety of projects, from songwriting to performance. Here, we talk to Francisco about what his role involves... What exactly do you do for a living?

I work for the Music Development Agency and I am the director of MZONE - a youth music programme dedicated to training and creating music opportunities for children and young people in Merseyside - from training young people in music production to showcasing young acts and bands. What does your job involve?

I oversee the full programme of activities, develop the programme strategy across Merseyside, instigate partnerships and bring new organisations on board, work directly with the delivery partners and support and advise on the programme. I'm also responsible for overseeing the financial management of the programme including fundraising and the day-to-day running of the programme. What are you working on at the moment?

I am developing the second music week, to be held in the autumn half-term. It will bring together 100 young people with a passion for music making who will work with top quality music leaders for an intense six days on songwriting, performance and presentation. They will then produce a performance on the final evening. The songs will be recorded live on the night and turned into a CD. What did you want to do when you left school?

Too many things. However, I think I ended up doing what I enjoy the most, music and developing/empowering people (especially children and young people). I am from Chile, and arrived in the UK in 1975. While in Chile I wanted to be someone who made a difference. What jobs have you done before starting your current role.

Prior to taking the post of MZONE director I was the executive and artistic director of Brouhaha International - delivering the Merseyside International Street Festival.

I was also director of the South Liverpool Arts Festival, training coordinator for the Centre for Arts Development Training, and worked at Unity Theatre in the early '90s.

I have also been involved in bringing international bands and theatre companies from across the world. What do you like about your job?

Making a difference to young people's lives. Working with different people on fun and educating projects that vary week to week. The variety and the rewards from looking at the young people who gain so much from being a part of the programme. What have been the highlights of your career Big question. First one, and the most important, the birth of my daughter! Making things happen. Turning round Brouhaha International and making it able to make an impact. Turning round MZONE and making it make a difference to 5,000 young peoples' lives and enabling them to use, make, promote and enjoy music. Who do you most admire in your profession and why? I would have to say the mothers and fathers who, week in week out, get their children sorted and ensure they arrive on time to the MZONE workshops on a Saturday and Sunday morning (their only days of rest

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DRUMMING UP SUPPORT: Francisco Carrasco
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Liverpool Echo (Liverpool, England)
Date:Aug 6, 2005
Words:566
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