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A unique project that brought classical music into the lives of more than 1,500 young local children won a prestigious prize at the Allianz Arts & Business NI Awards 2010 last night.
The OUTLET Sounding the Planet with the Ulster Orchestra won the award for its work with the communities of Banbridge, Newry and Dungannon.
The OUTLET at Bridgewater Park supported this major educational project involving children in the South Eastern Education and Library Board area last May and June. The project was also part funded by Banbridge District Council.
Ulster Orchestra musicians conducted thirty workshops in local primary schools teaching youngsters about orchestral music and developing the children’s listening, composing and performing skills. The pupils made their own homemade percussion instruments using recycled items, which brought in an additional environmental element to the project.
The workshops were followed by three performances of the Ulster Orchestra in Banbridge, Newry and Dungannon, which involved not only the children from the participating schools but hundreds more from each local area.
This was the first year that The OUTLET had sponsored an Ulster Orchestra Project and they have now pledged their continued support in 2010.
“We are absolutely delighted that our project won this prestigious award. Our sponsorship is all about giving something back to our local community and we felt that working with the Ulster Orchestra was a perfect way to do this. We are investing for the benefit of our local children, enhancing their education and letting them experience and be inspired by something completely different,” Christine Watson, Marketing Manager of The OUTLET at Bridgewater Park said.
“As Northern Ireland’s premier retail outlet village our operations touch all members of the local community as customers, neighbours, employees, suppliers, businesses and residents, our strategy is to add value to the Banbridge district and build on the district’s focus on the arts. Banbridge now features the newly built FE McWilliams art gallery as well as an annual busking event and by sponsoring this educational outreach programme we are serving our district to inspire and nurture future talent,” she added.
Lydia Gamble, Head of Marketing and Development at the Ulster Orchestra said: “I am delighted that our project with The OUTLET has been recognised by the Allianz Arts and Business awards for our creative partnership and commitment to developing young people in Northern Ireland.”