Blackpool Tower Wurlitzer organ is celebrated with the launch of scholarship to create new generation of organ players

Simon Cheung and Daniel Greenway both 17, from The Blue Coat School in Liverpool, play the mighty Wurlitzer Organ at The Blackpool Tower Ballroom''Picture: Jason Roberts
Simon Cheung and Daniel Greenway both 17, from The Blue Coat School in Liverpool, play the mighty Wurlitzer Organ at The Blackpool Tower Ballroom''Picture: Jason Roberts

Blackpool's world famous Wurlitzer organ played a central part in the launch for a new campaign to encourage a new generation of organ players.

Top teenage organists Daniel Greenway and Simon Cheung, both 17, students from the leading Liverpool Blue Coat School, were given a rare opportunity to play in the Blackpool Tower Ballroom and entertain hundreds of dancers and holidaymakers.

Simon Cheung and Daniel Greenway both 17, from The Blue Coat School in Liverpool, play the mighty Wurlitzer Organ at The Blackpool Tower Ballroom.''Picture: Jason Roberts

Simon Cheung and Daniel Greenway both 17, from The Blue Coat School in Liverpool, play the mighty Wurlitzer Organ at The Blackpool Tower Ballroom.''Picture: Jason Roberts

As part of the “Blue Coat For All” project, the school has launched an organ scholarship and will become a centre of excellence to create a new wave of talented organists, particularly females, in a bid to stop the traditional music dying out.

Daniel and Simon are the faces of the new campaign, supported by The National Lottery’s Heritage Fund.

The Blue Coat Organ Scholarship is sponsored by the YOST (the Young Organ Scholars’ Trust)

Daniel said: “Many young people won’t have heard organ music outside of churches.

"To hear the organ used for entertainment and to accompany dance in a ‘fun’ environment like The Blackpool Tower Ballroom will encourage a younger generation to reconsider the capabilities of this amazing instrument.”

Simon added: “To play on the Tower Ballroom Wurlitzer is so exciting, as it’s so unique in a magnificent setting.

"It is also a great privilege to showcase the amazing variety of opportunities for young people who will taking part in the new Blue Coat Organ Scholarship.”

As well as the scholarship, the project is aimed at restoring the Liverpool school’s historic Father Willis pipe organ, and includes a community outreach programme.

Female organist Carol Twinklefingers who regularly plays at The Blackpool Tower Ballroom said: “Playing in the world’s most famous Tower Ballroom and on the world-famous Wurlitzer is just like Cinderella meeting Prince Charming at the ball. It is such a magical experience.

“The first song I ever played was “Top of The World” and that’s just how I felt.

“And being a female organist in a male dominated world makes it so much more special.

“This new scholarship is a fantastic initiative and something I support 100% -i t will be wonderful to see more female organists hopefully coming through.”

The Liverpool Blue Coat School is a co-educational non-fee paying selective state grammar school in Wavertree, Liverpool, founded in 1708.

The 3,000 capacity Grade I Listed Blackpool Tower Ballroom was designed by the leading Victorian theatre architect Frank Matcham in 1899 and is one of his best surviving works.