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George Sampson Dances in Donaghmore!

Wednesday 16th December 2009 at 12pm 0 Comments

Britain’s Got Talent’s ‘singing in the rain’ star George Sampson visited Beam Creative Network in Donaghmore on Saturday to facilitate a dance workshop with forty children from the ‘ImagineAction’ project.

Funded by the Legacy Trust UK, ImagineAction is part of Connections, the Northern Ireland programme set up to help build a cultural and sporting legacy from the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic games.

16 year old George Sampson rose to fame in 2008 when he was crowned the winner of Britain’s Got Talent. He went on to star in the West End show ‘Into The Hoods’ and released a bestselling DVD. George spent two hours with the ImagineAction children, showed them some of his dance moves and talked about his rise to fame.

Twelve year old Joseph McVeigh from Eglish was one of the lucky participants. He said:
“It was fun to meet someone who is so well known and who impressed Simon Cowell! I’m really enjoying the ImagineAction project as we get to learn lots of new skills and get to meet lots of people who have become major success in drama and dance.”

ImagineAction invites young people to broaden their skills through a range of workshops that build a bridge between arts and sports and other fun filled activities.

Beam Creative Network is one of six organisations to have received funding through Legacy Trust UK, managed by the Arts Council. The £1.78 million Connections Programme will see a series of sports and arts linked events taking place across Northern Ireland over the course of the next three years.

Beam Creative Network’s latest project has been given the thumbs up by celebrities including Louis Walsh, rugby star Tommy Bowe, Boyzone singer Shane Lynch and teen favourite Eoghan Quigg.

The forty youngsters, who are all aged 13-16 and hail from rural areas in County Tyrone, performed a breathtaking dance piece with a sporting theme in front of a capacity audience. The children are members of various sporting clubs including gaelic football, soccer, sailing, rugby, basketball and more..

Over the next two years, participants will learn drama, puppetry, hip hop dance, script writing and will take master-classes from some of the best in the business including X Factor maestro Louis Walsh.

Kathryn O’Neill is Manager of Beam Creative Network. She said:

“We are so excited to have George Sampson here with us in Donaghmore. The ImagineAction children had been looking forward to this workshop for weeks and George didn’t disappoint with his award winning dance techniques.”

Phil Chamberlain of Legacy Trust UK, who funded the project, says:

“Legacy Trust UK is delighted to be funding ImagineAction, which will encourage young people throughout County Tyrone to engage in sports and arts activities inspired by the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. ImagineAction is part of Legacy Trust UK's Connections programme, and in working in partnership with cultural and sporting organisations across Northern Ireland, Connections will create a lasting legacy from London 2012.”

Marian Clark de Monreal, Legacy Trust UK Programme Co-Ordinator, also endorsed the project saying:

“As part of the Connections programme, Beam Creative Media’s latest workshop was an amazing success. George Sampson encouraged the young people of Donaghmore to put on their dancing shoes and helped them to master some of the complicated routines for which he is known. Saturday was a thoroughly exciting day which revealed to the youth of County Tyrone the never ending possibilities of achievement on the dance floor.”

ImagineAction has been granted the London 2012 Inspire mark, the badge of the London 2012 Inspire programme which recognises exceptional and innovative projects inspired by the 2012 Games. Francesca Canty of London 2012 attended the recent launch of ImagineAction. She said:

“The London 2012 Cultural Olympiad is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to showcase to the world the excellence, innovation and creativity of organizations around the whole UK. I’m delighted to say that Northern Ireland is responding really strongly to this opportunity and ImagineAction has been granted the London 2012 Inspire mark in recognition of its commitment to using the power of the Games to inspire change. “

ImagineAction continues with a series of workshops until March 2010, which is then followed by a Theatre Champions festival. It concludes in the lead up to 2012 with a brand new musical theatre piece which will be written with, and performed by, the children involved.

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