Music, merriment and a city full of fun and frivolity was the order of the day at the recent Great Belfast Busk Off.
And it was two young musicians from Newry, ‘Paul and the Meanie’, who took home the crown of ‘Belfast’s Best Buskers’, entertaining the crowds with their rock hits and cover classics.
Organised by Destination CQ - the Business Improvement District for the Cathedral Quarter –in partnership with Belfast City Council, Help Musicians NI and Belfast One, the inaugural event saw 25 musicians including duos, choirs, bands and acapella groups, compete for the crown.
The event forms part of the Belfast City Council ‘Summer of Music’ season which has around 25 events across the City during August and September.
With a commitment to developing the unique Cathedral Quarter area as a great destination for tourism, culture, creativity, innovation, and business, Destination CQ organised this event in a bid to animate the streets and to showcase and celebrate the wealth of musical talent from across Northern Ireland.
Speaking at the event, Gareth Neill Destination CQ BID Manager commented: “This event has been truly magnificent and brought so much fun and life to not only the Cathedral Quarter, but right across the City.
“We were delighted with the interest and support in what we hope will be an annual event - the talent on display was outstanding.
“We worked hard with our partners and local businesses such as Dawson Music, Half Bap Recording Studios and OhYeah Music Centre to create an event that was engaging, fun and inspiring to other musicians and performers.
“Northern Ireland has such a rich pool of musical talent having produced global superstars such as Snow Patrol, Ash, The Undertones and Van Morrison – and I believe we may have uncovered some future stars here today.
“I would like to thank our charity partner, Help Musicians NI, for their involvement. They carry out such fantastic work in supporting the health of the music industry in Northern Ireland and supporting young talent and events like this.
Gareth concluded: “I would also like to take this opportunity to congratulate the winners, Paul and the Meanie and to thank all of those who took part. We now look forward to Culture Night in a few weeks’ time where we will see more musicians and artists unite to bring such a fantastic atmosphere to our capital city.”
Throughout its 5-year term Destination CQ BID will carry out various projects to enhance the Cathedral Quarter area through 4 themes, Create, Celebrate, Invite and Inspire.