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Eurovision schools programme gets cracking

As Liverpool gets ready to host the iconic Eurovison song contest, local schools will be invited to celebrate with EGGS, brass bands, and folktales, to name just a few activities.

Following the announcement of EuroFest – a two-week cultural festival that will run alongside the competition – Liverpool’s education programme, EuroLearn is now getting under way and will offer youngsters from early years to secondary schools a chance to be inspired by Eurovision.

EuroLearn is being made possible through generous funding from The National Lottery Heritage Fund with additional funds from the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and the government’s UK Shared Prosperity Fund. Funding from Spirit of 2012 will also support EuroLearn as well as the future evaluation of Eurovision’s benefit to the city region.

Led by Liverpool City Council’s Culture Liverpool team, alongside a wide range of creative partners, this is the first time a host city has offered an engagement programme of this scale and was an integral part of the successful bid to host the song contest on behalf of Ukraine.

EuroLearn has three main strands – music, visual arts and storytelling – and schools across the city region will be supplied with resource packs which they can use to bring Eurovision into the classroom. 

Resonate, Liverpool’s music education hub, is co-ordinating the music strand with highlights including:

  • 100 Voices – A secondary school mass collaborative choir alongside the Ukrainian Children’s Choir
  • EuroBrass! – A Eurovision and brass band soundclash by Mersey Youth Brass
  • An emerging singer-songwriter festival for schools in June
  • Sanctuary and Unity Through Song – Project for children and young people with special educational needs supported by Liverpool Hope University
  • Performances by the Liverpool Signing Choir.

The visual arts strand takes its inspiration from the tradition of egg painting, known as Pysanka in Ukraine, with an online artist-developed resource pack made available via the Culture Liverpool website to allow not only schools but people of any age to get involved. 

Working with Liverpool ONE, artists have also been commissioned to work with schools across the city region to decorate giant eggs that will feature as a public art display in Liverpool ONE from 31 March. Each local authority will select schools to decorate an egg with a seventh egg being decorated by members of the Ukrainian community.

Eilish McGuinness, chief executive at The National Lottery Heritage Fund, said: 

“Liverpool is a city steeped in heritage and renowned for its impact on the musical world, so it is incredibly exciting that it is playing host to one of the biggest global music events – Eurovision. We are delighted that thanks to money raised by National Lottery players, we are supporting the EuroLearn programme. 

“EuroLearn is already shaping up to be an outstanding programme bringing together children and young people across the city region to connect with and share, not only the rich heritage of Eurovision and their home city, but also the significant cultures and traditions of Ukraine.”

The Liverpool Learning Partnership will co-ordinate the storytelling strand by focusing on the folk tales of Eurovision countries, and there will also be a “twinning” of Liverpool Central Library with Odesa National Scientific Library.

Culture Liverpool’s community engagement programme will be announced next week.

READ MORE: New-look of the Liverpool sign gets unveiled at Liverpool ONE for Eurovision countdown

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