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Top musicians help pupils hit the high notes at Airport launch

Pupils from two east Belfast primary schools are tuning up for the official opening of the £6m terminal enhancements at George Best Belfast City Airport next week.

Seventy children, from the airport’s adopted schools, St Joseph’s Primary School and Victoria Park Primary School, will perform with musicians from Camerata Ireland in front of a host of dignitaries at the event next Tuesday.

To prepare for the event the musicians, including Camerata Ireland Chief Executive Hugh Carslaw, Malcolm Neal and Ivan Black, have been running workshops in the schools to help the children create their own compositions on an airport theme.

The pupils will use song and orchestral and percussion instruments to illustrate planes taking off, landing, soaring and the hustle and bustle of a busy airport as well as performing the classic theme from the film Those Magnificent Men in Their Flying Machines.

Brian Ambrose, Chief Executive of George Best Belfast City Airport, said: “We are delighted that local children from our adopted schools will join some of Ireland’s top musicians to mark the launch of our £6m terminal enhancements aimed to enhance the customer experience.

“We sponsored the Camerata Ireland workshops through our Community Fund, which aims to support valuable community projects. We want to help young people develop their skills and we hope this has been an inspirational experience for them.

“We are committed to the local community and it’s only right that local schools take centre stage at the official opening of our new facilities.”

Mr Carslaw said that while the Camerata Ireland Orchestra was an elite ensemble, its members were focused on making music accessible to everyone.

He added: “Camerata Ireland is delighted to have been involved with the George Best Belfast City Airport.

“Their support has allowed us to continue with our work of encouraging children to enjoy music.

“It’s been great working with the children on this project. They have really embraced the experience to perform in public and have learnt how to express themselves through music.
“We hope to see them at our Belfast City Airport-sponsored family concert Music For All at the Clandeboye Festival on 21 August which is free to children under the age of 15."

The terminal enhancements include a new departures lounge, improved technology to speed the journey through security, new conference rooms and investment in car parking and front of house facilities.