All children should be compelled to learn about classical music in the same way they must do maths and science, Nicola Benedetti has argued.
Benedetti, the award-winning violinist, said all youngsters should be exposed to classical music, whether they like it or not.
Saying the concept of letting children do exactly what they want in other areas of education is “alien”, she admitted she is “bemused” by the current approach to teaching art and culture.
“It actually really upsets me when people say: ‘Kids hate listening to a symphony, why would we do that to them?’” she said, in an interview with Scotland on Sunday.
“I think, hang on a minute, if you were to turn round and say to a kids: ‘Would you like to play video games or would you like to have a maths lesson?’ Of course, they’re going to go for the video games.”
Benedetti is involved with the Sistema Scotland music education and its Big Noise Orchestra.
She added: “Needing the child’s approval for what they do in school is just such an alien concept when you’re talking about maths, science, history or English.
“But, suddenly, when you bring music into the mix, it’s: ‘Oh no, we can’t show them anything that they don’t instantly love because that would be like forcing children into something that they don’t want to do.’
“It just bemuses me.”