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Liverpool ONE is hosting a tribute to one of its best loved piano performers

1 year ago

By The Guide Liverpool

Liverpool ONE is hosting a tribute to one of its best loved piano performers

Liverpool ONE is joining forces with Open Culture and Liverpool-based charity Bradbury Fields to honour and remember Tickle the Ivories icon Frank McFarlane, who sadly passed away in February.

The Tickle regular will be remembered on Thursday 11th August as Liverpool ONE hosts a special fundraising event, A Tribute to Frank McFarlane.

Frank, who was blind, was chairman of Bradbury Fields in Liverpool, a charity which works to enhance the quality of life of people living with sensory loss. The fundraiser will see all busking proceeds donated to the charity in memory of Frank.

The tribute will see performers such as Mike Neary, Helen Maw, Daniel Green and Bradbury Fields Choir take to the keys throughout the day from 10am-7pm to commemorate the hours and hours of joyous music Frank brought to the festival.

With performances booked for almost nine hours, the fundraiser aims to raise donations for the charity while simultaneously paying homage to Frank’s annual 12 hour pianothon for Bradbury Fields.

To coincide with the tribute event, a specially designed piano by Toucan Tango will be unveiled in honour of Frank. The bespoke piano features elements of Frank’s life, including his passion for music and sports.

Donna Howitt, Place Strategy Director at Liverpool ONE, said:

“Frank was an integral part of Tickle the Ivories and the smiles he brought to faces on the estate will never be forgotten.

We couldn’t think of a more fitting way to honour Frank than with a fundraiser for Bradbury Fields, a charity so close to his heart.

We look forward to celebrating and remembering Frank with all our talented, local pianists, choirs and musicians. Frank will be deeply missed.”

Matthew Cliff, Head of Bradbury Fields Community Services at Bradbury Fields, said: “Frank McFarlane was one of the most incredible and inspirational people you could ever wish to meet. Having lost his sight in early childhood, he went on to qualify as a teacher. He taught English at St Vincent’s School for many years and after retirement, committed most of his time to improving the world for blind and partially sighted people.

Not only did he sit on the Board of Trustees of a number of mainstream schools, he was also involved with a number of sight loss charities around the country, and for many years sat on the board of Trustee of Bradbury Fields Services for Blind and Partially Sighted People. As if this wasn’t enough, he also assisted with Bradbury Fields Visual Awareness training and was available to staff and service users alike to offer support and words of wisdom whenever needed.

For the last few years, he did his Pianothon every summer, 12 hours of continuous piano playing at Liverpool ONE to raise funds for Bradbury Fields. Frank will be forever remembered by Bradbury Fields, and such was his impact that we recently renamed our Board Room the Frank McFarlane Board Room in his memory. He is sadly missed by all at Bradbury Fields”

Marking the first Tickle the Ivories without Frank McFarlane, Liverpool ONE are asking visitors to come down, donate to a worthy cause and pay respects to the Tickle legend with more than 10 years of commitment under his belt.

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