Arts and disability organisation Open Arts will be topping off its 25th anniversary celebrations with an evening of festive songs in the beautiful candle-lit surroundings of St. Peter’s Cathedral at 7.30pm on Friday, December 1.
Open Arts Community Choir by Candlelight will feature the organisation’s multi-award-winning community choir performing with a range of guest artists and the event is timed to coincide with the UN International Day of Persons with Disabilities on Sunday , December 3.
Based at the Crescent Arts Centre in Belfast, Open Arts provides arts programmes and activities for people with physical disabilities, visual impairments and mental health issues. Since the organisation was founded, it is estimated that its programmes have benefited more than 12,000 people.
The Open Arts Community Choir enjoyed a successful run at the European Choir Games this year, winning two gold medals, a gold diploma and a silver diploma and competing against choirs from all over the world, including Canada, Russia and the USA.
Speaking ahead of the St. Peter’s Cathedral concert, Eileen Branagh, chief executive of Open Arts said: “Part of the role of Open Arts as an organisation and our Community Choir is to make the arts as widely accessible as possible to people with disabilities and to show that with the right support there is nothing that people with disabilities cannot achieve.
The UN International Day of the Disabled highlights the achievements of people with disabilities on a wider basis. Our members contribute to Northern Ireland society every day in numerous different ways – in the arts, the Civil Service, in education and health and beauty – and we are proud of each and every one of them!”
The event will also feature guest appearances from Donal Scullion (singer-songwriter), Bronagh Broderick (singer-songwriter), Ballyclare Victoria Flute Band, and Jonny McGeown (vocals and violin).
For further information on Open Arts, please visit www.openartsni.org or search ‘Open Arts’ on Facebook.