Yesterday the New London Orchestra was invited to participate in The Big Opportunity's conference - a forum for representatives of the Third Sectory (voluntary organisations, and charities such as us), to get together and discuss the legacy to come out of the 2012 Olympics.
As well as sitting in on discussions with a panel of experts from across different fields including Muhammad Bari MBE from LOCOG and Caroline Diehl from the Media Trust, and a talk from the Rt Hon Tessa Jowell (see the picture!), we were also asked to provide a musical interlude. We wanted to show the sorts of community work we do in Newham, and decided to invite the Luton Road teams that had participated in our In Training concert to come and sing. They did an absolutely fantastic job, singing loudly and confidently and I just about got away with playing the piano to accompany them! Feizal Rajabally, one of the Senior Contract Manager's for Look Ahead came to speak to Julian and I before the performance to thank us for the opportunity. He said the group had grown in confidence and their self-esteem had been boosted by being asked to take part in New London Orchestra events, and their family and friends had been really impressed with the transformation in the individuals over the last year, thanks to their involvement in music making with us. We're really glad bringing music to the Look Ahead communities is making an impact, and we'll be discussing with their Arts Manager, Louise O'Reilly, ways we can develop this relationship in the future.
Thanks to Paul and Chloe for all their hard work organising the event, we had a great time!