February’s masterclass at Institute of Contemporary Music Performance kicked off a series of regular songwriting events, with Lauren Aquilina next
Institute of Contemporary Music Performance (ICMP) hosted two special events as part of LGBT History Month this February, focused on the promotion of LGBT artists, which also marked the beginning of a regular series of songwriting circles. First, ICMP hosted a dedicated Songwriting Masterclass with special guest Jordan Gray – a semi-finalist on BBC’s The Voice in 2016 and made TV history as the show’s first ever transgender contestant.
“Songwriting is a weird discipline because unless you’ve got the right question in your mind at the beginning it can go badly awry,” said Gray. “If you start writing based on what you think that people want to hear, then you are in the wrong industry – that’s not how it should start. But you can tell these are real artists with sincerity and integrity.”
Following the masterclass, the Institute hosted a Songwriters’ Circle at Proud Camden celebrating the diversity of its own student community, and will become a regular event led by ICMP’s songwriting faculty. Taking place in an intimate setting, the audience gets an exclusive opportunity to hear songs in a stripped-back format, from both well-known writers and up-and-coming ICMP students. Special guests this season have included Frank Turner, Ed Harcourt and Sam Duckworth of Get Cape. Wear Cape, Fly.
ICMP songwriting tutor Tim Elsenburg (Sweet Billy Pilgrim) will host the next Songwriters’ Circle on 6 March at Proud London again, which will also feature special guest Lauren Aquilina. The Bristol-born songstress will be in conversation with Elsenburg talking about her career, writing techniques and advice for budding songwriters.
For more information on the ICMP’s events, check out: icmp.ac.uk/events