Stars Align for Charity Gala
A star-studded concert featuring Gary Barlow is raising funds for #ChallengeDerbyshire to support three end of life care charities.
Hosted by the Sheffield composer and record producer Eliot Kennedy to celebrate his 50th birthday, the songwriter to the stars has invited famous friends to perform.
The line-up at Sheffield City Hall includes musical theatre sensation Alfie Boe, pop legends S Club 7, and the Take That star.
Gary Barlow performed at Eliot’s fundraiser two years ago for Help For Heroes, which raised more than £60,000 for the charity. Eliot’s annual charity gigs raise funds for causes close to his heart and have become the stuff of legend.
#ChallengeDerbyshire supports three end of life care charities in North Derbyshire: Blythe House Hospicecare, Ashgate Hospicecare and Helen’s Trust.
Eliot said: “Over the years I’ve raised funds for charities ranging from mental well-being to animal welfare, but #ChallengeDerbyshire is one very close to my heart. I want this to be a celebration of the incredible work of these hospices and the remarkable nurses who offer light, kindness and dignity at a time we need it most. I can’t think of a better gift for my 50th year.”
Eliot has sold millions of records worldwide. His first global success was the Spice Girls single, Say You’ll Be There.
Eliot’s world famous Steelworks Studio in Sheffield has been a hits factory for icons in the music world. He has worked with Stevie Wonder, Aretha Franklin, Donny Osmond, and Bryan Adams.
David Hopkins, Chief Executive of M Markovitz Ltd, established #ChallengeDerbyshire in 2015. David said: “It’s an absolute thrill that Eliot has chosen to champion our cause and support our three amazing hospices. Everyone who experiences their care and support are humbled and grateful.”
#ChallengeDerbyshire has raised over £700,000 in three years and hopes to reach its £1million target in 2019.
To buy tickets for Eliot Kennedy: 50th Birthday Celebration on March 29, 2019 at Sheffield City Hall, call the booking line on 0114 2789 789.
#ChallengeDerbyshire is an initiative supporting the three end of life care charities in North Derbyshire; Blythe House Hospicecare, Ashgate Hospicecare and Helen’s Trust.
In 2015, David Hopkins, Chief Executive of M Markovitz Ltd, challenged his staff to try to raise £100,000 for the cause and quickly found how engaged both they and his customers were, so encouraged other businesses to join the challenge. The target was upped, and set at £1million.
Three years further on, #ChallengeDerbyshire have now raised well over £700,000, and with a schedule of fundraising events planned, aim to reach our £1million pound target this year (2019).
David and his staff oversee the day-to-day running of #ChallengeDerbyshire and together with the support of other local businesses, they ensure that all costs and expenses are covered, meaning every penny donated goes directly to the three charities to provide end of life care.
The businesses involved also offer their respective specialist services, (e.g. coach travel, sign printing, hospitality) for free when required to ensure that they maximise the money raised at every fundraising event organised. This gesture is also often extended to the individual charities as and when they need those services.
The hospices supported operate across Derbyshire. Blythe House Hospice adds quality to life providing the highest care for people affected by cancer and other life threatening illnesses, with over 1000 people accessing its services every year. Ashgate Hospicecare nurses make 3,000 home visits a year. Helen’s Trust helps over 150 people with terminal illness receive care and equipment in their homes.
About Eliot Kennedy – composer, songwriter, record producer
Sheffield-based Eliot Kennedy is a Grammy and Ivor Novello award winner, Golden Globe Nominee and the co-writer with Gary Barlow of the hit Broadway musical Finding Neverland, as well as an A list film score composer on both sides of the Atlantic.
Eliot’s first No 1 was Take That’s Everything Changes which he co-wrote and co-produced with Gary Barlow which started their long running song-writing partnership. In 2012 they co-wrote, and Eliot produced, that year’s biggest selling single Sing, the official song for the Diamond Jubilee. They co-wrote songs for ITV’s Britannia High series for which Eliot also scored all of the episodes.
His first global success was the Spice Girls single Say You’ll Be There. He’s also had major hits as writer/producer with Celine Dion, Boyzone, Blue, S Club 7, Five, Billie Piper, Atomic Kitten, Bryan Adams and Take That. He and Bryan co-wrote Mel C’s hit When You’re Gone.
Eliot won the Grammy for Never Gonna Break My Faith, performed by Aretha Franklin and Mary J Blige for multi-award winning feature Bobby and was beaten by Prince for the Golden Globe that year. His Ivor Novello was for Boyzone’s Picture Of You. He won Canada’s Juno Award for Songwriter of the Year jointly with Bryan Adams for their song When You’re Gone and the two of them were nominated for the Critic Choice Award for Never Let Go which featured in the movie The Guardian. In New York Finding Neverland won the Broadway.com Best Musical award and also Best song for Believe.
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