Cinemagic and Gentle Dental Care Belfast have won the New Sponsor award in the annual Allianz Arts & Business Awards, which took place this week in The Grand Opera House Belfast. Cinemagic and Gentle Dental have been working together on a series of creative projects involving young filmmakers and young film consultants and the creation of a short film ‘Brace Yourself’. Click here to view the film

The Grand Opera House, Belfast played host to over 250 guests  for the Allianz Arts & Business NI Awards 2016. Dr Wendy Austin, MBE compered the awards ceremony, steering the proceedings with her characteristic finesse guiding the audience on a journey of artistic excellence. There were nine awards presented in total to winning arts – business partnerships with award pieces designed and created by local artist, Lynsay-Erin Mercer.The Awards showcased examples of innovative creative collaborations between the business community and the arts sector, delivering a diverse range of tangible business benefits. The winning partnerships represented a varied section of the business community and arts sectors.

Guests were entertained by a fantastic selection of home grown artistic talent, enjoying powerful performances by local musician, Duke Special, the talented Pintsized Productions, Premiere Circus, the agency for artists established by the Belfast Community Circus School with local actor, Stephen Beggs, a superb Master of Ceremonies gluing the performances together and drawing the audience into the world of the stage. 

Presenting the Allianz Arts & Business NI Awards Brendan Murphy, CEO, Allianz, congratulated the partnerships and all the winners saying: “The innovative partnerships celebrated here tonight between business and the arts are excellent examples of best practice, helping to foster cultural intelligence and provide a blueprint for the collaborative pathway that can prove to be the cornerstone for success. Congratulations to all this year’s very worthy winners and indeed to all those partnerships who showcase exactly just what artistic engagement can achieve.”

Business of the Year was picked up by Belfast Harbour, a clear winner due to its recognition of the importance of art in its various forms, from the public sculptures and the extensive art collection housed within the office building itself to supporting many artistic partnerships.

Scooping the sought after Arts Award which is accompanied by a cash prize of £3,000, Arts Care has been working with flair across healthcare services in Northern Ireland for 25 years, showing that art in health and social care can deliver numerous benefits to staff, patients and their families. 

Recognising the success of all the partnerships, Mary Nagele, Chief Executive, Arts & Business Northern Ireland commented:“Many congratulations to all award winners, the Allianz Arts & Business NI Awards give a platform to showcase local cultural talent and excellent arts, business partnerships. These partnerships continue to grow and develop showing creativity, innovation and the talent that can be created when arts and business work together. I would also like to thank Allianz for their continued support which is invaluable.”

The importance of continued private sector support for the arts was reinforced by Roisin McDonough, Chief Executive, Arts Council of Northern Ireland, saying: “Exploring new and enterprising ways for local business and arts organisations to work together is important to the continuing success of both sectors, as both clearly have much to gain from combining their distinctive strengths. The Arts Council, as the development agency for the arts, welcomes the opportunity through the Allianz Arts & Business NI Awards to acknowledge the best of this year’s creative collaborations, which will be an inspiration for others to follow.”

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