A THEATRE group in Glengarriff found a unique way of celebrating its 20th anniversary by creating a video fundraiser for the Jack and Jill Foundation.
Local GP, Dr Aisling Morris, said a lot of her patients benefit greatly from the Jack and Jill Foundation, a charity that provides home care for children with high medical needs.
Every year, at Christmas time, Glengarriff Theatre Group donates the proceeds of one of its shows to a local charity. Obviously, this year, there was no show, but that didn’t stop the group from reaching out to its 200-strong cast.
The cast usually features seven or eight adults but the rest range in ages from children as young as three to those in their teens. The children aren’t all from Glengarriff, either – some come from Bantry, Kealkil, Coomhola and Castletownbere.
As a way of keeping them engaged, especially during the tedium of lockdown, the children were asked to register their interest in taking part in writing a song, doing a dance routine, and featuring in a video.
Fifty of them signed up to be involved in the socially-distanced gig, and those who submitted lyrics found their work blended into a song for all to sing. The end result GTG Great Together was produced by Garry McCarthy of GMCBeats and the end result is as melodic as it is inspiring.
The lyrics – which are full of joy and inclusivity – were added to a backing track and the children were slowly but surely taught the dance moves over a six-week period. There were also lots of virtual rehearsals for the song.
A local dance teacher, Karolina Spencer, was drafted in to help them with the moves and different classes and different schools were filmed in different locations to comply with Covid-19 restrictions.
The track was actually recorded before Christmas and released locally on social media. However, through The Southern Star’s website and Facebook page, Glengarriff Theatre Group is hoping to increase the €2,000 it has already raised to €5,000.
‘The kids had an absolutely fantastic day,’ said Dr Morris. ‘They felt like professionals because they had mics and headphones – it was great for them to have something fun to focus on during lockdown.’