PORTRUSH Music Society is celebrating this week after it picked up two awards at the 2012 Association of Irish Musical Societies (AIMS) Awards in Killarney.
The annual awards celebrate the best in Irish musical theatre and Portrush was delighted that its production “Titanic the Musical” won Best Front of House while Richard Campbell won Best Musical Director.
The Society and Richard Campbell as they faced stiff competition from over 130 musical societies across Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.
Titanic The Musical was Richard’s first show as Musical Director and to win this in his first year is a huge accolade and bodes well for his future musical career.
Commenting on Richard’s musical direction, AIMs Adjudicator, Andrea Rea, said: “From the very beginning our journey with Titanic’s passengers was supported by a very fine orchestra under the able leadership of MD Richard Campbell. His musical direction was a strong aspect of this show.
“Richard Campbell met the challenges with the help of a sizeable and accomplished orchestra, and strong conducting technique. ““
Richard said: “When I was waiting for my category to be announced, I wasn’t even thinking about winning. I was soaking up the atmosphere of the ceremony.
“To be honest, I don’t really remember being on stage, but I do remember it felt like an eternity waiting for the winner to be announced. I just couldn’t believe it when the presenter said my name. I didn’t know what to do. I will most definitely never forget this achievement.
“I would like to thank everyone from Portrush Music Society who supported and helped me along the way especially our Director Kerry Dunn.”
Praising Portrush Music Society’s award-winning Front of House display, the Adjudicator added: “House Management was efficient and there was some really interesting material in the foyer, adding detail and context that was all the more fascinating in the context of the show.”
PMS Chairman, Willie Thompson, said: “We are absolutely delighted and proud of both our Awards.
“Those involved in the front of house display put in a considerable amount of research, time and effort into engineering a fantastic display and it is great to receive wonderful recognition particularly for such a special show.
“As a first time Musical Director with us, we are extremely proud and happy for Richard whose dedication and hard work has paid off. We appreciate all his efforts in bringing out the best in us. We congratulate him and wish him much success in the future.
“It has been a very proud year for Portrush Music Society. The Society was delighted to have been given the rights to perform the moving musical during the centenary week of the sinking of the Titanic and, on the actual night of the 100th anniversary. And now to have won two all-Ireland awards…..well, that is very, very special.”