25 November 2011
Edited by Colin Hambrook
Singer-songwriter Lizzie Emeh has won an Ability Media International award for helping to build a more inclusive world for disabled people, with her groundbreaking debut album ‘Loud and Proud’.
The Ability Media International (AMI) awards were presented on Sunday 20 November at a glittering ceremony at the world famous London Studios. The packed event was attended by some of the UK Arts industry’s most influential and well-respected players – including Downton Abbey actor Dame Maggie Smith, childrens’ TV pioneer Anna Home and filmmaker Mike Leigh.
The AMI awards, created by Leonard Cheshire Disability in 2009, identify outstanding creative projects that encourage a more inclusive world for disabled people.
Heralded by the international panel of judges as “a truly great artist who is making a major impact on the music scene”, Lizzie won the ‘Champion Award 2011’.
Lizzie is part of leading arts organisation Heart n Soul, which gives a voice to learning disability culture and puts it at the heart of everything they do. Lizzie made musical history with her debut album ‘Loud and Proud’ becoming the first solo artist with a learning disability to release an album in the UK and has since toured across the UK, won a Radar arts award and most recently performed for Samantha Cameron at 10. Downing Street.
80’s pop star, Mari Wilson presented the award to Lizzie Emeh. Lizzie, who wowed the audience with a showstopping performance, said: "I heard a rumour about the awards a few back, but I only believe it now I’ve got it in my hand. I feel very excited to have won. It’s an honour and privilege. When I made the album I never thought it would have this kind of impact. I’d really like to thank Heart n Soul for their belief in me. I really feel I’ve achieved something for people with learning disabilities."