Prizes awarded at LIPA graduation day

David Stark and Ruby Sky
Songlink Prizes 2016 winners

Songlink Prizes 2016 winners Ruby Sky (left) and Aleks Grey being presented by David Stark

Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts’ annual ceremony saw winning songwriters acknowledged by Songlink and top production graduate declared by MPG

Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts (LIPA) graduation day took place this week, which saw the presentation of the annual Songlink Prize and Music Producers Guild (MPG) Award, as well as the induction of eight new companions. The two Songlink Prize winners were Emma Buckley (aka Ruby Sky) from Derby, England and Aleksander Raftevold (aka Aleks Grey) from Norway.

Aleks’s winning song Unstoppable was also featured as the soundtrack for LIPA’s video retrospective, which opened the ceremony at the BT Convention Centre, while Emma – whose winning song was titled Prove You Wrong – has been co-writing and recording with various other local artists and writers. Both received prize cheques as well as subscriptions to SongLink and other benefits including professional advice and mentoring over the next year.

“As usual it was really hard to choose two winners from the 20-plus songwriting students who submitted tracks this year, but Aleks and Emma’s songs were both truly outstanding,” declared Songlink editor/publisher, David Stark. “I feel very confident indeed that they will both go on to achieve major success in the music industry within the next few years, and congratulate them and all the other graduates of 2016.”

Meanwhile, lead patron Paul McCartney inducted eight new companions of LIPA, including musician/broadcaster Tom Robinson, producer Martin Levan, actress Greta Scacchi, theatre director David Babani as well as honoured friends; Japan’s Testsuo Hamada and Sennheiser’s Paul Whiting. Also present were Noddy and Suzan Holder whose son Django graduated with a special award, while producers Steve Levine and Tony Platt presented the MPG Award to LIPA Sound Technology graduate Sivert Hagtvet.

Find out more about LIPA at and Songlink at

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