#News: Universal Pictures Ireland and Media Central launch digital radio station

Universal Pictures Ireland, alongside Group M agency MediaCom, has pioneered a collaboration with Media Central to promote the release of Illumination’s Sing with a media first: a brand new digital radio station inspired by the

Universal Pictures Ireland and MediaCom identified Media Central as the perfect partner given the strength of their radio network for reaching the movie’s target audiences and their collaborative approach to partnerships.  

Sing is an animated movie, created by the same team that brought Despicable Me to our screens, Illumination. Sing is set in a world like ours, but entirely inhabited by animals and follows five contestants as they compete in the world’s greatest singing competition. Already it has grossed over $350m and counting at the worldwide box-office.

Sing features covers of more than 65 hit songs made famous by some of the biggest recording artists—from Frank Sinatra and The Beatles to Katy Perry, and Kanye West. The original motion picture soundtrack including Stevie Wonder and Ariana Grande’s FAITH was the spark to creating a customised digital radio station, Media Central used DJs from across their national network to contribute to and build a station that features all the music, characters and fun from the smash-hit movie.

Every hour of the station is built around characters from the movie and the songs that represent them to showcase the outstanding soundtrack. The DJs further delve into the exciting back stories of each character and what the songs mean to them. This, mixed with input from the characters themselves, is what makes the stations content so engaging and unique.

The partnership will also feature a competition to win a money-can’t-buy prize to ‘Sing Your Heart Out in London’. This will see one lucky winner receive an incredible and exclusive recording studio experience in London, mentored by CeCe Sammy, the vocal coach to major recording talent. The lucky winner will also get to bring three friends with them (T&C’s apply). The competition will be promoted across Media Central’s network of stations and digital channels.

David Burke, General Manager ROI and NI at Universal Pictures International Ireland, said:

Illumination’s movies have succeeded in permeating pop culture and SING should prove to be no exception when it opens in Irish cinemas nationwide on January 21st.  SING FM is a terrific vehicle to showcase the fantastic soundtrack and story at the heart of the film. This innovative and creative approach is very much in keeping with Illumination’s own DNA.

Neil Mac Dermott, Head of Solutions at Media Central, said:

Creating the digital radio station has been months in the making and has involved close collaboration between our partners in Universal Pictures Ireland and MediaCom. Characters from the movie feature on the station along with the best of Irish DJ talent from across the Media Central network.  It’s really exciting to add such an innovative station to our national mix, if even for a short period, and we’re really looking forward to amplifying it across our entire network as well as all our digital and social platforms through bespoke content, playlists and promotions.

Ben Hawley, Account Director at MediaCom, said:

It’s been fantastic working with Universal Pictures and the Media Central team in bringing this idea to life. Universal Pictures Ireland has an exciting release slate for 2017 with Sing poised to be one of the biggest animation hits at the Irish box-office. Due to Universal Picture’s creativity, with terrific content and rich creative assets available; partnerships like this are really exciting especially when they are executed brilliantly, as is the case in this instance.

Sing is in cinemas nationwide from January 27th. Paid previews run on the weekend of January 21st and 22nd.