AIMS Charity Single "When I Grow Up"
(17/10/2015) by William Lacey

Dedicated to the memory of Jack Lam

~~On the 25th of October, in the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre, the team that created "Tiny Dancer" by A Song For Lily-Mae in 2012, the second biggest selling charity single in Irish chart history, second only to the 1985 smash hit, Band Aid's Do They Know It's Christmas, will record a new charity single.

The producer of Tiny Dancer, Stephen Macken, has once again teamed up with AIMS  the Association of Irish Musical Societies to create something very special for this Christmas. Over two thousand, three hundred voices will join together with a sixteen-piece orchestra to record "When I Grow Up" from Matilda, The Musical, by Tim Minchin. The project has received the approval of Tim, his full cooperation and a royalty free use of the song. The recording will take place as part of a gala concert celebrating the 50th anniversary of the creation of AIMS, the Association of Irish Musical Societies, featuring the best amateur talent that Ireland has and many of the West End Irish who have made Musical Theatre their career on the professional stage.

Stephen Macken explained why this particular song was chosen.
'I chose "When I Grow Up" as the AIMS charity single because of its deeper meaning in the context of its portrayal of the simple childhood dreams and ambitions that we all once projected into our adult lives, eating sweets all day, climbing taller trees, no longer fearing monsters, and how those dreams and ambitions are the same for all children, including those who face an uncertain future due to illness and who may never live to see their fulfillment. It's that context that makes the song so special and meaningful.'

He said that when you listen to the lyrics, a child's hope for a bright future is captured beautifully by Tim's words, but also, in this context, is the resonance of the tragedy that is serious childhood illness and how it jeopardises that future. For this reason, and because AIMS is a thirty-two county, all Ireland organisation, the beneficiaries of the proceeds of the charity single will be the Children's Medical Research Foundation, Crumlin and the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children. The single will go on sale at the end of November.

The recording will feature former Westlife star, Shane Filan. Shane has sold over forty-five million records worldwide as a member of pop sensations Westlife. These include fourteen No. 1 singles in the UK. He is delighted to be appearing in ENCORE! at the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre on October 25th and to be singing on ‘When I Grow Up’ in aid of the Children's Medical Research Foundation, Crumlin and the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children. RTÉ radio and television broadcaster, Ronan Collins, will host the evening’s entertainment.

The recording is being dedicated to the memory of Jack Lam from Castlebar in Co. Mayo who died in November 2013 from complications arising from his treatment for Neuroblastoma. Jack was part of the original social media campaign set-up by Stephen Macken to create awareness of the recording, but his passing one month after submitting his ‘When I Grow Up’ photo so shocked and saddened the team that the project was temporarily postponed. Now, Stacey McHugh, Jack’s mum, says she is honoured that Jack will be remembered this way, and that if Jack’s story encourages people to support this project and raise funds that might help save a child’s life then it makes her happy. Stacey also gave us the wonderful news that she and her partner, Tsung Lam, are expecting the birth of a baby this Christmas week, within days of Jack’s seventh birthday.

For more information, contact Stephen Macken on (087) 2624 911 or [email protected]