School Musical Takes Art Award
Schools Musical Takes Arts Award
The Dublin Docklands Development Authority has won a prestigious Allianz Business2Arts Award for the third year in a row, setting a new record since the awards were first introduced 15 years ago. The Award was presented for Honk! in the ‘Best Collaboration in the Community’ category. The Docklands Authority previously won Allianz Business2Arts awards for ‘Caught on Camera’ in 2005 and the Docklands Schools Music Development Programme in 2004.
Honk! is a musical version of The Ugly Duckling which was staged by 344 children from 16 Docklands schools in The Helix Theatre in February 2006. The 75 minute show was professionally produced, directed, choreographed and costumed and was performed to an audience of over 2,400 people to great acclaim.
Gerry Kelly, Director of Social Regeneration with the Docklands Authority, said Honk! was the culmination of the Docklands Schools Drama Programme for 2006 and a wonderful opportunity to showcase the skills and talents of the children involved. “The aim of this programme is to help integrate the Docklands schools, to tackle the issues of bullying and racism and especially to promote self-confidence and self esteem amongst the children. We first introduced free drama classes to two schools in the area in 2003 as part of our extensive Education Programme. By the academic year 2004/5 the drama classes had extended to 16 junior and primary schools.
“The success of the Docklands Schools Drama Programme is a tribute to the strong levels of collaboration between school principals, teachers, children and parents. “To win this arts sponsorship award three years in a row is unprecedented and a very strong endorsement of the effectiveness of the Docklands Authority’s arts based social regeneration initiatives,” he said.
Speaking at the presentation of the Allianz Business2Arts award, John O’Donoghue, TD, Minister for Arts, Sport & Tourism said: “A strong and healthy society cannot be measured by economic indicators alone. Putting the arts at the heart of society can, I believe, help lead us to a better place.”
Paul Maloney, Chief Executive of the Docklands Authority, said that since its establishment in 1997, the Docklands Authority had prioritised the mobilisation of individual and community assets in tandem with the more traditional ‘bricks and mortar’ approach to regeneration in the Docklands area and has been to the forefront in the areas of active citizenship and community development.
“This has been further strengthened with the recent appointment of an arts manager and the development of an arts strategy, with a strong emphasis on arts in the Docklands community,” he said.