Over the last year, players of People's Postcode Lottery have awarded mac birmingham £200,000 in support of their mission to make arts an important part of everyone's life. They do this by offering creative events and activities to local families and young people who face challenging circumstances across Birmingham.
From 13th June to 20th June, mac birmingham will use the funding awarded by players to put on a Taster Week, during which they will offer more than 60 free creative sessions for visitors to enjoy. Suitable for children, young people, adults and families, the classes and events include arts and crafts and musical activities – all made possible by the funding and support from People's Postcode Lottery players.
Last year, the charity ran a similar event funded by players, which ran over two days and saw in excess of 10,000 visitors to mac, with many participants enjoying the free activities. This year, the event promises to be even bigger and better. Alongside the free taster sessions, which include life drawing, dance, yoga and tabla drumming, visitors will also enjoy artist demonstrations, building tours and performances from mac students, with artist tutors on hand to discuss their courses with the public.
mac birmingham's relationship with the players of People's Postcode Lottery is now in its second year. During this time and through the funding awarded, mac has strengthened its work with young people who face challenging circumstances. One such project, mac Makes Music, illustrates the charity's breadth of work and the diversity of the participants. Working with young offenders, looked-after children (who live in local authority care), people with learning disabilities and hospital patients, the team offers music sessions, including songwriting and composition on both traditional instruments and digital equipment.
This creative outlet enables participants to express themselves in a positive way, increasing their confidence and future aspirations, and gain accreditation through an Arts Award. With over 300 young people involved over the last year, attending 248 sessions with professional music leaders, several of the group's participants have now set up their very own group, called Switch. They write, produce and perform their own music and regularly rehearse at mac. They have also just released their own music video.
Dorothy Wilson, mac Chief Executive and Artistic Director said, "With funding from the generous players of People's Postcode Lottery, mac's creative offer and mission extends much further, with greater impact and resonance. We have already started to see the positive outcomes from this work, including increased participation and accreditations from the young people involved. We'd like to extend thanks to the players of People's Postcode Lottery for making this possible."
After 20th June, mac birmingham's normal schedule resumes, with a wide variety of courses, lectures, shows and more all on offer. One series to watch out for is the 'Let's Take It Outside' programme, which features a wide-ranging selection of music, dance, theatre and Sundown Cinema activities, all taking place outdoors in mac's Arena, rain or shine. See more details at the mac birmingham website.