The British Paraorchestra (BPO) is the world’s first professional ensemble of disabled musicians, founded by Charles Hazlewood and television director, Claire Whalley in November 2011. Following their world debut at the Paralympic Closing Ceremony in 2012 alongside Coldplay, the BPO is pioneering a global movement to recognise and showcase disabled musicians with extraordinary abilities.
Just as the Paralympics have achieved so effectively in sport, the British Paraorchestra is shifting perceptions of disability by creating a visible platform for gifted disabled musicians to perform and excel at the highest level. The ultimate aim of the project is to see talented performers with disability routinely play in mainstream performances. This change is already taking place with several members performing regularly within existing groups on Bristol stages and on the Park stage at the Glastonbury Festival of Contemporary Arts 2016.
Find out what the British Paraorchestra are up to: www.paraorchestra.com