Wells arts organisation receives £50,000 from government to help it survive coronavirus crisis

  Posted: 13.10.20 at 12:25 by Tim Lethaby

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The International Music Exchange (TIME), based on Chamberlain Street in Wells, has received a £50,000 grant from the Culture Recovery Fund, courtesy of the Arts Council, the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, and HM Treasury.

TIME organises concerts and festivals in the UK and Europe for international youth choirs, bands and orchestras, and in July 2018 inaugurated WOWFest: Wells Orchestral Weekend to much acclaim with a series of free concerts by musicians from the UK, Germany and Malaysia under the patronage of Wells’ celebrity conductor, Charles Hazlewood.

Thanks to this grant, WOWFest will be back in 2021 (the 2020 edition was delayed due to coronavirus) and a huge Community Concert celebrating the 250th anniversary of Beethoven will be staged.

Local singing enthusiasts will be invited to attend a Come and Sing Ode to Joy event in April, followed by six weeks of rehearsals with a dedicated conductor to perform the Ode to Joy from Beethoven’s 9th Symphony accompanied by a guest symphony orchestra and young soloists in Wells Cathedral.

The Culture Recovery Grant is a lifeline for TIME and - to date - 1,384 other arts organisations across the country.

Company director Tamsin Smith said: "We are hugely grateful for the invaluable support confirmed as part of the Culture Recovery Fund.

TIME has received the money from the Culture Recovery Fund

"This support is a lifeline for many arts organisations who have been in such turmoil over the last few months, ensuring the essential longevity of jobs, activity, innovation and culture for us all.

"As a result of this funding, TIME is now in a secure position to continue in its production and development of WOWFest: Wells Orchestral Weekend, the Provencal Festival of Youth Orchestras, our ambitious Ode To Beethoven project and our annual series of concerts, tours and musical collaborations for budding young musicians across the world.

"We can’t wait to be on stage again, enabling players and audiences alike to revel once more in the joy of music after so many months of silence."

The Culture Recover Fund was created to enable arts organisations in all genres to survive the impact of Covid-19 beyond April 2021.

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