MUSIC HALLS PROJECT
CENTRAL TO THE WORK OF SoundThread IS The development of cultural infrastructures. TO THIS END THE Music Halls project establishes and develops spaces for music creation and performance.
Our initial project in Walthamstow with St Mary's Church demonstrates how reciprocally beneficial partnerships with arts organisations and public spaces (such as places of worship) can strengthen the resilience equality in the arts and maximise the utilisation of historic buildings. The halls provide a place in which a wide demographic of ages and cultures can access the arts and help grow audience numbers through removing geographical and affordability barriers.
In the case of St Mary’s Music Hall, at the second time of trying, St Mary’s church received £1.6m from Heritage Lottery Fund to develop the church as a cultural space. This grant includes allowances for reparations to the roof, new toilets, a new sound system, and a new glass atrium for meetings etc.
It is unanimously recognised that the second bid was successfully strengthened through having SoundThread as a co-writer and committed partner for the coming 5 years.
This success was possible through the close relationship that the church had forged with SoundThread to establish the Music Hall and deliver the music and cultural program.
SoundThread established St Mary's Music Hall as an autonomous yet strategically connected entity, sitting within the church. To date we have curated an arts program hosting world class acts such as Sekou Keita, Martha Tilston, Get the Blessing and Soweto Kinch.
The demand for this model has increased significantly with additional Music Halls being planned across the country. Our model seeks to partner with existing projects in a given location, and, through our networks and experience, upscale the arts output of a variety of spaces. We do this by securing funds, installing systems and setting up the necessary general infrastructure to host bigger and better events in a manner that reflects the diversity of local cultural needs.
SoundThread has a strong history of successful bids across many different funds, and this level of knowledge and experience is applied to the increasing number of Music Hall projects.
We are keen to hear from other public spaces such as Assembly Halls, Places of Worship, Town Halls etc, who might be keen to explore the possibility of working partnership with SoundThread to expand the use of their space.
Sekou Keita Playing at St Marys Music Hall's opening night Summer 2017