Welsh celebrities including film star Rhys Ifans, who hails from Ruthin and attended Mold's Ysgol Maes Garmon, are helping celebrate the tenth anniversary of a pioneering project that’s transforming disadvantaged children’s lives through music.

More than 500 youngsters aged five to 11 years of age have been learning to play instruments completely free of charge thanks to Codi'r Tô (Raising the Roof), a community regeneration project working with pupils at Ysgol Maesincla in Caernarfon and Ysgol Glancegin in Bangor.

Among those who’ve already recorded videos wishing the project a happy birthday are legendary Welsh pop star Dewi Pws Morris, radio and TV presenter Huw Stephens, weather presenters Alex Humphreys and Derek Brockway (aka Weatherman Walking) along with Twin Town actor Llyr Ifans, brother of Rhys Ifans.

The scheme – the only one of its kind in Wales - is inspired by Venezuela's El Sistema programme. It uses music to help children in deprived areas become a positive force in their community.

As well as high-profile messages of support, the milestone anniversary is also being marked with two concerts - at Galeri Caernarfon and Pontio in Bangor.

First up will be the pupils of Ysgol Maesincla at Galeri at 1pm on Thursday, May 23, followed by the performance of the young musicians from Ysgol Glancegin in Theatr Bryn Terfel at Pontio at 1pm on Thursday, June 6.

During a break in rehearsals of Star Wars' Imperial March at Ysgol Maesincla, eight-year-old timpani drummer Harri Williams said: "I enjoy it a lot. I’ve also had lessons on the cornet.”

Also having a blast was tenor horn player Mari Williams, nine.

"Playing isn't very difficult," she said. "I enjoy the performing. I'm looking forward to the concert."

Codi'r Tô manager Rhys Roberts said the concerts are just one part of the 10th anniversary celebrations.

He said: "We have been collecting short videos from various celebrities wishing Codi'r Tô a Happy Birthday. So far Dewi Pws Morris and Llyr Ifans have sent their greetings and we're expecting many more.

"Meanwhile, eight pupils have been chosen to attend the Side by Side music camp, part of El Sistema, meeting in Gothenburg, Sweden. This is a huge event, it's the world's largest gathering of its kind.

“Our growing programme of community activities helps us to spread the joy of music even further. School holiday clubs, parent and toddler classes and ensemble bands and concerts introduce local people to Welsh music culture, and each other.

"We are currently working on a long term three to five year project idea to highlight Codi'r Tô, the only El Sistema project in Wales, as a project of international importance.

"In addition we're also keen to hear from volunteers interested in supporting our music sessions in schools and our community after school clubs.

Tutor Bari Gwilliam feels Codi'r Tô is valuable in both developing individual skills and bringing the local community together.

"Codi’r Tô is designed to support the schools to raise educational levels of attainment. Improving focusing, listening, following instructions, language development, numeracy, attendance and educational outcomes."

Codi'r Tô is a registered charity backed by the Welsh Government Taith Fund, the UK Government’s Shared Prosperity Fund, Cyngor Gwynedd, National Lottery Community Fund, Thomas Howell Education Fund, Garfield Weston, Moondance Foundation and the Postcode Community Trust.