CSR Program
SK Innovation hosted the first overseas Great Music Festival for people with developmental disabilities in Atlanta, USA
2023.10.18 | SKinno News

▲ The performers of Great Music Festival in USA 2023, which was held in Atlanta, Georgia, took a group photo after the event.


The Great Music Festival (hereafter referred to as “GMF”) sponsored by SK Innovation was held overseas for the first time.

On October 15 (Atlanta local time), SK Innovation announced the successful hosting of GMF in USA 2023 in Atlanta, Georgia, the U.S. GMF is a music festival organized to discover the musical talents of individuals with developmental disabilities and to nurture their dreams and aspirations. Since its inception in South Korea in 2017, the festival has grown to celebrate its 7th event this year, with participation from a total of 191 performance teams and over 2,070 individuals, solidifying its position as the largest music festival for people with developmental disabilities in the country.

The festival was held at the Lawrenceville Arts Center in Atlanta, Georgia, and featured performances by five local teams consisting of individuals with developmental disabilities.

President of Georgia Music Teachers Association Cathy Thacker and Director and Conductor of the Gwinnett Symphony Gregory Pritchard attended the event as judges. Key stakeholders and local residents were among the 250 attendees who were deeply moved by the performances. Keybo Taylor, Gwinnet Count Sheriff and Keida Ackerman, Director of State and Local Government Affairs who represented the Global Development Group of SK Group, also attended the event.

▲ Keybo Taylor, Gwinnet Count Sheriff (left) and Keida Ackerman, Director of State and Local Government Affairs, Global Development Group, SK Group (right) deliver messages at GMF in USA 2023.


GMF in USA portrayed the message of eliminating prejudice against disabilities and provided a stage for people with developmental disabilities to dream, challenge, and achieve as a means to communicate and empathize with the local community. Georgia is also home to two operational battery production plants of SK On, a battery business subsidiary of SK Innovation. The event was also facilitated by multiple volunteers from The SOOP, a local organization that supports people with developmental disabilities.

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Dream with Ensemble, the grand prize winner of the first GMF, received favorable reviews overseas after performing at the Permanent Mission of The Republic of Korea to the United Nations in New York and a tour in South Africa. This led to SK Innovation’s discovery of an opportunity to globalize the program and hosted the first overseas GMF in the United States. In addition to spreading positive influence and art support for people with developmental disabilities through the event, SK Battery America, the American subsidiary of SK On, the co-host of GMF in USA, also had a meaningful time communicating with the local community.

The Grand Prize Winner was awarded with USD 2,000, and the remaining four teams received $1,000 each as growth support funds. The Grand Prize went to Joshua Ward, a pianist, who shared that the prize money would help him replace his broken keyboard.

▲ Joshua D.Ward, the Grand Prize Winner of GMF in USA 2023 (second from left) took a commemorative photo with the organizers.

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▲ The participants of Great Music Festival in USA 2023 received awards from the organizers.


Head of SK Innovation’s Value Creation Center Lim Su-kil said, “We will do our best to help spread social value not only in the United States but also overseas where SK Innovation’s global business sites are located.”


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