Music in the Community

A newly created Award, in partnership with The Times, recognises an inspiring individual in the voluntary music sector

A public vote declared Streetwise Opera the popular winner of the new Music in the Community Award. Streetwise Opera gives homeless and formerly homeless people opportunities to further their personal development through music, with a weekly music Workshop Programme in 11 homeless centres around the country and an annual production. Prime Minister Gordon Brown declared Streetwise to be “one of the most innovative charities of the decade”.

The charity was created when an MP’s remark about stepping over homeless people when leaving the Royal Opera House sparked an idea for Matthew Peacock. “A lot of homeless people felt this comment was an opportunity,” he says, “If they were in an opera it would be a chance to turn stigma into celebration. They felt that they were looked down on and rarely given the chance to show what they can achieve.”

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