Bringing down the house
6th March 2023
Photography by David Loftus
Celebrations don’t come much bigger, better, or more inspiring than ones that include the world-famous Kingdom Choir. When Ambassadeurs Group (AG) wanted to mark its first year in operation with something memorable it turned to the choir to help mark the occasion.
The concert, which was held at the Palace at Hamilton House, brought together AG’s partners, friends and representatives of many of the charities that have benefited from some of the £2m that has been raised by the Group over the previous year. The British gospel choir, led by conductor Karen Gibson, is known for its performance at the 2018 Royal Wedding of Prince Harry and Megan Markle. It was founded in 1994 and has been delighting audiences for almost three decades with rousing performances of classic songs such as Stand By Me, Respect, and Something Inside So Strong, as well as their own material including their new release Not Giving Up.
The choir was an obvious choice to celebrate AG’s anniversary and look ahead to the coming year. ‘We wanted to mark the occasion in a special way, and we were really lucky to be able to secure them for this special performance,’ says Tracy Damestani, AG’s Chief Corporate Affairs Officer. One of the Group’s advisers, Paul Pacifico, introduced the choir to AG – he is a champion of independent musicians and the former CEO of the Association of Independent Music (AIM). ‘Not only was the evening joy-filled and fun, the choir helped amplify so many of our key messages particularly around community engagement. We are proud that they are London neighbours.’
AG’s corporate philanthropy and community engagement is organised across the four pillars of Mental Health & Wellbeing, Education, Our Community and Safer Gambling – which speaks to the heritage of Les Ambassadeurs Club, a private members club and ultra-high-end casino. The anniversary evening brought together organisations that have received AG donations, or other fundraising help, such as The Kids Network and the Prince’s Trust RISE. Also there were representatives of the three charities AG has already signed alliances with – The Playground Theatre, Cool Earth and The Felix Project, which have received collectively £265,000 in funding from AG.
Looking ahead to the rest of 2023, Kevin McGowen, AG’s CEO, says: ‘We will be growing the number of charitable alliances and continue to raise money for good causes. These donations come from the generosity of Club members, spurred on by the efforts of the AG WorkFamily who get behind AG initiatives.’ A recent initiative includes a £75,000 donation to the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) for the Turkey-Syria Earthquake Appeal.