Irish Chamber Orchestra
The Irish Chamber Orchestra (ICO) provides weekly workshops in singing, song-writing and violin tuition for 300 children across Limerick city. The project, Sing Out With Strings, was established in 2008 by the ICO as a Community Engagement Programme working within Limerick’s regeneration process. It includes two schools, Le Chéile N.S. (created from the amalgamation of Galvone N.S. and Southill Junior School) and St. Mary’s National School. Inspired by El Sistema, the Venezuelan model of music education which provides free instrumental and vocal tuition countrywide, Sing Out With Strings has gained a significant place within the musical fabric of primary music provision in Limerick’s regeneration process.
This important work has attracted local and national attention and recognition as an excellent model of instrumental music provision with primary schools. The project addresses issues of inclusion, equality of access and provision, and highlights the numerous benefits that a long-term project of this nature has on the children, staff, parents and the wider community. Both at individual and collective levels, the project is uniting communities, building local pride, creating vehicles for expression, stimulating emotional responses and developing tangible musical knowledge and skills. Sing Out With Strings aims to continue to expand, contribute and strengthen the social, cultural and creative capital of communities within Limerick’s regeneration process.