Community based, the Erin Arts Centre is the only organisation of its kind on the Isle of Man. The Centre serves an Island population of over 80,000 people and provides an essential and unique key to access to, and participation in, arts-based activities. Since the Centre's foundation in 1971, it has fulfilled a unique and important role as a venue for music and theatre.
Under the guiding hand of founder and Director, John Bethell MBE, D Mus (Hon) (pictured right), the Centre has received international recognition as home to a number of prestigious events:
· The Mananan International Festival of Music and the Arts
· The Mananan International Festival of Opera
· The Lionel Tertis International Viola Festival & Competition
· The Barbirolli International Oboe Festival & Competition
Staffed almost entirely by a dedicated team of voluntary helpers, the Erin Arts Centre has become a prestigious venue for international artists of the highest calibre. The fine acoustic of the Centre's Isle of Man Bank Auditorium is suitable for nearly all forms of music. Its versatility in terms of space enables it to accommodate anything from instrumental recitals to small orchestral ensembles, choral concerts, opera and film, without losing its special atmosphere of intimacy.
In September 2004, the Centre took delivery of a new continuo organ, designed and built in the Isle of Man, and incorporating decorative panels designed by Iris Burton, based on 13th century originals. Click here for more about the continuo organ.
The Centre also has its own dedicated gallery space. The Sir James Mellon Gallery was opened in 1994 and its fine combination of natural and artificial light makes the Gallery ideal for arts & crafts projects and exhibitions. These features also lend themselves to education and corporate presentations and lectures.
An Endowment Fund was launched in July 2002 to help meet the costs of running the Centre and to fund future projects and in January 2005, the 200 Club was set up to raise money for the Endowment Fund.