Virtual reality orchestra among charity projects to net funding

A dozen charity and community benefit projects are to receive £13,000 each through Nesta’s Amplified programme, which supports digital creativity.

Joe Lepper | 2nd Apr 19

A virtual reality orchestra and a digital radio station for young homeless people are among a dozen charity and not-for-profit initiatives to share more than £150,000 in funding.

The 12 initiatives are being handed £13,000 each through Nesta’s Amplified programme, which helps develop creative digital ideas that generate a positive social outcome.

Among projects to benefit is a ‘VR Sound Stage’, which is run by the Philharmonia Orchestra. This touring installation offers up to 30 people at a time a virtual reality orchestra experience via headsets and speakers, including seeing an orchestra through the point of view of one of its musicians.

Another project to receive funding is a radio station for the homeless, which is to be established by creative charity Accumulate in partnership with Ravensbourne University London.

The station will offer training to young homeless people to digitally broadcast podcasts featuring their stories, music and other content. Those taking part will learn how to broadcast podcasts, operate a radio desk as well as present and edit digital content.

Others to benefit include Nomad, a digital project run by community arts organisation All Change to help reconnect communities with Somali cultural heritage.

The Baluji Music Foundation’s project with Queen Mary University, to develop a hands free digital device to help blind musicians read Braille, is also being supported by the fund.

Mentoring and support

The 12 successful bidders will also be partnered with a mentor to help guide them through the development process and testing, over the duration of the fund from April 2019 to April 2020.

In addition, Nesta will offer support through workshops to bring successful bidders together to discuss challenges and learn from each other.

“At Nesta, we believe in the power of art and culture to transform people’s lives,” said Amplified programme lead Deborah Fox.

“It’s a privilege to have an opportunity to work with such an amazing and diverse group of organisations, committed to using their incredible creative talent as a force for good.”