Sizeable Grant Brings Sinfonia Viva Plans A Step Closer

Sizeable Grant Brings Sinfonia Viva Plans A Step Closer

Sinfonia Viva, the Grammy-nominated Orchestra of the East Midlands, is forging ahead with plans to bring high quality music back into the lives of thousands of people thanks to a major grant from one of the most respected charitable institutions in the UK.

The Orchestra, which is based in Derby and has been established in the East Midlands for nearly 40 years, has been awarded £100,000 from the Garfield Weston Foundation.  The long-established family-founded, grant-making charity has donated more than £1 billion to charities since it was established in 1958.

The recovery grant will enable Sinfonia Viva to develop a blend of actual and virtual performances and workshops over the coming months from STEM based creative projects for Derby school pupils to sharing ensemble performances online.

Sinfonia Viva chief executive Peter Helps said: “I know we faced stiff competition for this grant which has come at a pivotal time for Viva.

“Like many other arts organisations, we continue to face the challenges of not being able to perform concerts or work directly in local communities which is obviously having an impact on our ability to generate income.

“Thanks to support from the Garfield Weston Foundation, we are now able to take performance and community engagement plans to the next level and futureproof our delivery during the pandemic and beyond.

“Not only can we provide essential work opportunities for freelance musicians, artists and technicians but we can reach out to even more participants and audiences – many of whom are the hardest hit by the impact of Covid and the restrictions applied.”

Garfield Weston Foundation Director Philippa Charles added: “Our cultural sector is at the heart of our local communities providing not only entertainment but education and inspiration for many. 

“Our Trustees were impressed by the entrepreneurial spirit shown across the arts in response to Covid-19 and it was a privilege to hear what organisations had been doing to not only survive but also to reinvent the way they reach audiences. 

“What really stood out was the level of collaboration and support they had for each other and the determination to keep going, despite the increasingly difficult situation.

“We all want and need our cultural sector to thrive and, if anything, our time away from the arts has shown just how important they are to us – bringing much needed pleasure and enrichment to our lives. 

“Arts organisations are desperate to re-open and get back to what they do best, and we hope that this new funding will help many of them do exactly that.”

For more information about Sinfonia Viva please visit

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