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About us

Talent is distributed evenly, opportunities are not! Black Lives in Music addresses the current inequality of opportunity for black people aspiring to be artists or professionals in the Jazz and Classical music industry. Black Lives in Music believes in real equality for Black people to learn musical instruments at grassroots level and to allow them to pursue and realise their musical ambitions.

Black Lives in Music is made up of a number of partners who are all working towards the same goal: to dismantle structural racism in our industry. We aim to support the industry in providing better professional opportunities. We also want to achieve equality for Black professionals at all levels and in all areas of the UK Jazz and Classical industry. Representation matters, we need to take action together and create a level playing field for everyone to have an equal chance to succeed.

Black Lives in Music stands for equal opportunities – for Black people to be able to work successfully in the UK music industry without being the subject of discrimination.

There's work to do!

Meet The Team

charisse beaumont

Charisse Beaumont

Chief Executive

Charisse Beaumont has over 13 years of experience in brand creation and delivering market innovation. A former Company Director of Preacher Boy Entertainment, an independent award-winning artist management and record company, Charisse has worked with corporate businesses, media organisations, artists and charities, providing first-hand extensive advisory and consulting services to artists, managers, labels and students to develop and manage their career in entertainment. Charisse has a strong knowledge of the UK’s urban music scene and has worked closely with award-winning and Grammy-nominated music artists across the UK and US from the beginning of their career.

Roger Wilson

Roger Wilson

Director of Operations

Roger Wilson has many years of experience on both sides of the stage as musician, educator, tour manager and administrator. Conservatoire trained, he has worked extensively in the commercial, jazz and classical sector with a wide range of artists from Lesley Garett and Bryn Terfel to James Brown and Quincey Jones. He has also played in some of London’s most successful music theatre productions.  As an instrumental teacher and lecturer, Roger has worked throughout the UK music education sector at all levels. In recent years, he has been dedicated in his support for the professional development of aspiring young jazz musicians.

Aaron Casserly Stewart

Aaron Casserly Stewart

Relationship Manager

Aaron is a jazz vocalist and former singer with the three-time Grammy Award winning group the ‘Sounds of Blackness’. He is the former personal assistant to Morris Hayes (Prince’s keyboardist & band leader of the New Power Generation). Winner of a 2012 NAACP Image Award, Aaron is on the Board of Directors at Leeds Conservatoire; Executive Producer at Supa Qween Records; Chair of Black Lives Matter Leeds and Guest Lecturer at the University of Bolton. He is a PRS Foundation Advisor; Music:Leeds Advisor; Founder/Lead of Paradise Hill Productions and former City Commissioner/Mayor of Parsons, Kansas.

Marion Plinton

Marion Plinton

Administrative Support and Social Media Coordinator

Marion Plinton is a seasoned business administrator and social media coordinator with a wealth of cross-sector experience, having worked within both private and not-for-profit organisations.

Marion’s professional background in the event industry and her creative spirit with a strong passion for music and the arts are a perfect match for supporting the team of Black Lives in Music as an advocate for equality and diversity within the UK music industry.

Mahaliah Edwards

Mahaliah Edwards

BLiM Diversity Practitioner / Relationship Manager

Mahaliah is a violinist, experienced educator and community musician. Mahaliah has built a varied portfolio career, leading workshops and also working as an advocate for music education and social change, working with AYM, Sistema European Youth Orchestra and Ifa Yoruba Contemporary Arts Trust. In 2017 she was awarded the Be Inspired Youth Award by the Association of Jamaican Nationals. Mahaliah is an alumni trustee for AYM and a board member for ISM.  She sits on the Team Teach PGCEi advisory board for Music Masters, London.