The world famous Bushmills Distillery will play host to a fashion show on November 4, the likes of which has never been seen before in the Province.
This unique event will be organised by Coleraine woman Cindy McKendry, the brains and talent behind the stunning and greatly acclaimed Cirque, held in Barry’s in September 2016.
Cindy’s partner in crime is local broadcaster and presenter Sarah Travers and the title of the show Homage has a very special meaning for the popular Portstewart star.
Sarah’s father Ian sadly lost his battle with Alzheimer’s in 2013 and all money raised from this fashion show with a difference will go to the Alzheimer’s Society, where Sarah is patron, in memory of her Dad.
“I’m so thrilled Cindy has chosen the Alzheimer’s Society and has asked me to be involved,” said Sarah. “I lost my dear dad, Ian, to dementia with Lewy bodies in 2013 - he was 67 years old and I’m proud to be doing this in his memory.”
Homage has been described as an evening of whiskey, fashion and rock and roll with a live gig taking place as well as the runway show, and already The Undertones and Tim Wheeler have confirmed they will play.
“I was thrilled when my good friends the Undertones jumped at the opportunity to play at Homage,” added Sarah. And then when Tim Wheeler from Ash agreed it was just incredible! Tim, of course, lost his dad to dementia also.”
This one off show has already generated a considerable buzz despite it being nine months away and will be an evening celebrating whiskey, fashion, food with some rock and roll thrown in for good measure.
Creative Director Cindy McKendry explained how the concept came about: “I have always wanted to do a show in the Bushmills Distillery but I didn’t know if it was possible. I worked with them last year as they were sponsors for Cirque and were fantastic to deal with.
“I’m into rock anyway and the whole idea of whiskey and rock and roll seemed to be a perfect fit for the venue. Homage will have an edgy feel to it and throughout the show we willl also pay tribute to musicians and stars of rock and roll who are no longer with us.
“We have top designers from across Ireland showing along with multi award winning designer Una Burke from London. Una has a strong celebrity following all over the world including Rihanna, Lady Gaga, Madonna and Heidi Klum so the audience are in for a real treat.
“Following the show we will have the gig and there will also be music prior to the show so anyone who buys a ticket will be getting two shows in one. We will also have Darren Gardiner and the guys from LSFX live streaming the event.”
A raffle and auction will also help boost the charity’s coffers with some very special items up for grabs. Peter Gravelle, renowned for photographing the Sex Pistols, Billy Idol and The Damned, is sending over a signed print and Mark Wardel, who made a collection of masks from original cast of glam rock star David Bowie’s face taken in 70s, will be sending over one of his sought after masks.
Although tickets aren’t available yet, requests have been flooding in. “We are in the process of confirming the number of seats available, “ added Cindy. “The number of messages I have had asking for tickets already has blown me away. There has been tremendous interest from across the Province so it really will be a case of get in quick to avoid disappointment when the tickets go on sale.”
It is hoped that James Nesbitt, whose mum May also died from the disease, will put in an appearance on the night, depending on filming commitments and there could be a few other well known faces in the audience for a night that is most definitely not to be missed.
Sarah Travers added: “The audience can expect a unique experience - fashion, rock, food and of course the setting in the Old Bushmills Distillery is just fantastic. I have to say thank you to the Bushmills team for adding their support so wholeheartedly.
“Alzheimer’s and Dementia impacts on so many lives, there are 20,000 people living with dementia in Northern Ireland. Currently there is no cure but the Alzheimer’s Society is working towards finding a cure but they also provide vital help and support. Please come and let’s raise the roof as well as raise as much money as we can.”