Powerful partnerships between the corporate and cultural worlds took centre stage at the 2024 Arts & Business NI Awards in Belfast’s Lyric Theatre this week. Two North West organisations took home the top awards at the ceremony, attended by over 200 guests from business and the arts.

The Millennium Forum Theatre & Conference Centre and Alchemy Technology Services were named ‘Arts Organisation of the Year’ and ‘Business of the Year’ respectively at the event, which recognised the impact that creative business collaborations have had in Northern Ireland over the last year.

The Millennium Forum, one of Ireland’s largest purpose-built theatres, was recognised for its long-term commitment to delivering inventive projects with local businesses, including its recent ‘Centre Stage’ partnership with Aircoach, which engaged the local community as part of the youth musical FAME and supported the development of arts and culture amongst the younger generation.

Alchemy Technology Services claimed the highest recognition in the business category for its commitment to engaging with the arts for the benefit of its community, staff and customers. Each year the company supports a range of creative initiatives which engage employees and support local arts providers, enhancing talent development and community connections.

Other worthy winners at the event included Golden Thread Gallery & Translink, Belfast International Arts Festival & Belfast Harbour and Kabosh Theatre Company, amongst others.

CEO of Arts & Business NI Mary Nagele comments: “Year on year, our awards tell the important stories of the incredible partnerships cultivated in the corporate and cultural sectors here.

“Visionary private sector leaders recognise the value that connecting with arts organisations brings in so many ways – from motivating a workforce to addressing skills gaps, from supporting the needs of local communities to attracting staff and customers. Arts organisations also thrive through connecting with the business sector, using their skills and creativity to make great things happen and raise their profile while doing so.

“Every winner at this year’s awards can be proud of the contribution they’ve made, not only to their own organisation and their partner, but also to the cultural and economic fabric of Northern Ireland overall.”

The Arts & Business NI Awards have been celebrating connections between the private and arts sectors in Northern Ireland for over 20 years. A full list of 2024 winners can be found at www.artsandbusinessni.org.uk