East Midlands’ regional orchestra Sinfonia Viva has won further recognition for its innovative approach to music-making – working with key partners to develop creative community projects with people of all ages, cultures and backgrounds.
The Grammy Award-winning Orchestra, which already has a national reputation for its education and community work and is an Arts Council National Portfolio organisation, has reached the final stages of two significant awards.
It is one of three finalists in the not for profit category in the Derby Telegraph Business Awards which will be announced at a ceremony on June 24.
Sinfonia Viva has also been ‘long listed’ to receive a National Lottery Award in recognition of its regional tour of ‘Dark Clouds are Smouldering into Red’. The creative education project involved hundreds of school pupils across the East Midlands last year to create and perform music and dance pieces that commemorated the start of World War One.
The Orchestra will find out in the next few weeks if they have reached the final shortlist for the awards which celebrate success of projects supported by Lottery Funding. The final projects chosen will go to an online public vote on June 22 until July 29 and culminate in a televised awards ceremony.
Both awards are in recognition of the Orchestra’s work to take music out into local communities. Last year alone, Viva delivered over 12,500 creative community sessions and in addition played to over 51,000 people at 70 different events.
As well as delivering a variety of concerts in venues and open spaces – including Darley Park, the largest free open air concert in the country – Viva’s work includes working in places of least engagement.
These include inner-city wards of high deprivation, rural areas with low cultural provision and at risk of isolation, in hospitals and hospices, with care homes and fostering services, early years providers and Sure Start centres, schools – including those where for the majority of students English is not their first language – colleges and universities.
The Orchestra is also developing its project work with older people and those with dementia with two projects in 2014 and further delivery planned over the next three years.
Meanwhile, the Orchestra will shortly take delivery of its inflatable stage and auditorium which will enable it to take classical music further afield across the East Midlands. The first concert on the inflatable stage will be held in Derby city centre in early July.
Sinfonia Viva Chief Executive Peter Helps explained: “We have recently re-branded the Orchestra with the strapline ‘Orchestral thinking outside the box’ and recent events have certainly added weight to this vision. This is supported by our new video – see below.
“Our project work takes professional orchestral musicians, composers, conductors, workshop leaders and other artists into communities across the East Midlands and beyond.
“Participants in creative projects are collaborators in the truest sense. They develop the work with us, write and perform alongside us.
“By working with partners within the museums and heritage sector, artists from other genres such as dance, out of sector organisations such as Banardos and public companies like Rolls-Royce plc, we are able to extend the reach of our work and depth of engagement.
“The arrival of the inflatable stage and auditorium gives us even greater flexibility in our work. We will be able to perform concerts and education projects practically anywhere from parks to public squares and particularly rural areas that do not have performance venues.
“The mobile venue therefore strengthens our ability to be not only the orchestra for the East Midlands but the orchestra within the community – wherever that may be.”