Awareness of Autism Performance Festival Rocks Glasshouse Arts Centre
The dreams of Jordan Statham, a student at the Glasshouse College in Stourbridge, came true on Saturday 11th May when his Awareness of Autism Performance Festival opened its doors to over 200 people. The performance and arts festival was the brain child of Jordan back in October 2012.
He wanted to highlight the musical and performance talents of people with special needs and show their contribution to community. Jordans idea was immediately backed by Vinspired who generously funded the project to pay for all the costs of putting on the gig. Members of staff at Glasshouse College have supported Jordan with this venture as Jordan has autism himself but he has been the driving force behind the whole project from start to finish.
The project has become well supported by organisations as far away as Ireland who have been spreading the word about the concert.
The news of the concert even got to local legend Robert Plant who was keen to support Jordan and he came along to the evening of entertainment to speak to Jordan and listen to some of the acts.
Robert congratulated Jordan on his efforts and has offered ongoing support to Jordan in his musical career. Robert took the opportunity to speak to the audience and guests which was an unannounced surprise and a real treat for the people who had come along to the concert.
All of the money raised at the performance is being donated to Autism West Midlands which is a charity that has helped Jordan and many other people in the area with Autism.
At the moment through ticket sales selling T shirts CDs and other merchandise the amount raised is around 2000 pounds.
However Jordan and his musical partner Oscar Bell have written and performed a track that has become the anthem of the event and this can be downloaded on ITunes again to raise more money for Autism West Midlands.
The single is called As I Am and is a personal reflection about life with autism.
As well as Robert Plant supporting the gig Alex Griffin from Neds Atomic Dustbin played with Jordan and his band and the Mayor of Dudley Melvyn Mottram came along. The Mayor said: I am so impressed with the talent that the borough has to offer and night has been a huge success.
The event was filmed by ITV Fixers who support young people with such projects and they are creating a behind the scenes music documentary for Jordan to be able to continue to spread the word of Awareness of Autism.
The event was also recorded by KicFM who will put the concert on air very soon.
Gail Hickman Enrichment manager at the Glasshouse College who helped Jordan with the project says: the concert was a huge success. All the performers were brilliant and as I looked around the audience on the night there were many emotional faces and tears including my own. The performers should be really proud of what they have achieved. There were a team of volunteers who have worked really hard on making the concert a success and they should be thanked also. It was a great honour to have Robert Plant come along and support Jordan and he was very generous with time. The visit from him made Jordans night!