About Carl Orff

Carl Orff

Elemental music is never music alone but forms a unity with movement, dance and speech. It is music that one makes oneself, in which one takes part not as a listener but as a participant.

Carl Orff

Carl Orff and Orff-Schulwerk


Orff-Schulwerk takes its name from Carl Orff, the Bavarian composer and educator who lived between 1895 and 1982. As a composer, Carl Orff wrote extensively for the theatre, his most famous work is undoubtedly ‘Carmina Burana’ (1936). As an educator, Carl Orff was dedicated to the development of an approach to Music, Dance and Speech Education that we know today as Orff Schulwerk. Orff-Schulwerk is a creative, multidisciplinary approach to Music, Dance and Speech Education. Drama, visual arts and other expressive art forms are also incorporated within the approach.

The Orff Orchestra


Our singing voices and percussive bodies are our principal musical instruments. The Orff Orchestra complements the voice and the percussive body by adding a rich palette of sound from bass to soprano xylophones, metallophones and glockenspiels.

Music for Children

In the 1950s, Carl Orff and Gunild Keetman produced 5 volumes of books entitled ‘Music for Children’. These volumes are collections of texts, songs and instrumental works that the teacher can use as starting points and as sources of inspiration.

The Role of the Teacher


Orff-Schulwerk teachers:

  • believe in supporting the development of the whole person through engagement and interaction with music, dance, speech and expressive art forms
  • strive to devise and deliver creative, multidisciplinary activities that will support the holistic development and artistic fulfilment of every learner
  • believe in creating safe platforms for people to explore and engage, to communicate and connect through artistic activity

Please get in touch for more information on the work we do.

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