Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
Tom: Hi my name’s Tom. I’m 17 and I play guitar and sing a bit. I love music. I love performing, being on stage and expressing myself.
Billy: I’m Billy, I’m 16. I’ve been playing guitar for just over a year now and I just got hooked. I really wanted to explore music in all different directions, hence why I’m involved in this project.
Akira: I’m Akira, I’m 14. I play guitar and bass, trying to do a bit of everything. I’m trying to get into hip hop to learn how to spit and just trying to be a part of the whole music scene, find who I am as a musician and what music I want to make in the future.
Travis: My name’s Travis and I’ve been playing the violin since Year 3. I’ve also recently started producing.
How have you been involved with Brighter Sound?
Tom: Me and my brothers found Brighter Sound and Sing City online a couple of months ago. So we’re pretty new to it. It’s great! We just want the opportunity to play music with other people and it’s great that we’re able to write original music instead of just playing covers, and in a supportive environment. I also took part in Breaking The Silence, a remembrance project and performance to commemorate the 100 year centenary of the end of the First World War.
Billy: I’ve been working with Brighter Sound since 2015. You came into our school and ran a project that looked at how music affected learning in young kids. We did that for about four years and at the end we got to perform at Band on the Wall where I met some of the guys that went to Sing City. I also took part in Breaking The Silence.
Akira: I’ve been going to Sing City for about a year and a half. I did my work experience here for two weeks and got to know more about the crew and the office. I’ve got to know a lot of other musicians and I’ve broadened my music tastes through Sing City.
Travis: I got into Sing City through Akira. He told me to try it out and it was good. I started like a year and a half ago.
What have you been working on as part of your Silver Arts Award?
Tom: It’s gonna be a gig. Our aim is to make it small but successful because this is pretty much our first gig that any of us have ever planned. The aim is to raise money for Brighter Sound which is great because it’s a charity and it would help other people like us, but also to give an opportunity to young musicians who are in bands who want exposure. And maybe even get people who aren’t musicians to consider taking up an instrument.
Akira: We’re trying to get them known through Brighter Sound so they can work with Brighter Sound and also get people to listen to a new genre of music they might have never heard before. Or, for the musicians themselves, to understand what it’s like to be on stage.
What roles have each of you taken?
Billy: I’m the venue liaison. I’m trying to plan the venue we’re going to be working in. So I’ve sent out some feelers. Gonna see what happens. I can’t promise where we’ll be, but we’ll be somewhere big.
Akira: I’m the artist version of Billy. So I’m trying to find artists who can be at the event.
Tom: We all share the role of project manager. I’m sort of overseeing it. I’m making sure everything is done by a certain date.
Travis: I’m the finance manager. I’m working out how much we need to earn back, how much is a good amount to spend and stuff like that.
Have you come across any challenges so far?
Billy: For me, it’s finding the venue because not everyone wants to work with you. We want the right venue. I’ve sent out some feelers and we’ve got some quotes but we haven’t got anywhere dead set yet.
Travis: Also it’s really hard doing it in a certain order. There’s so much stuff we have to do, it’s hard to plan. Like we need to do this, then this. Everything’s just in our face.
Tom: I’m not typically a planning kind of person. I kind of just think of something and then do it. This is the first time I’ve had to think about the order in which we have to do it. There is, like Travis said, a lot of things to think about. So I’ve been, to get around that, been looking at different visual ways to lay out information, visual ways to put out plans.
How is this project helping develop your skills?
Tom: I was interested in learning how to manage a project and manage people, talking to different venues and have a go at organising something.
Akira: We’re trying to learn more about leadership skills and teamwork skills and trying to build up our confidence in event management and being better as a leader. It’s helping me to work with a team, knowing what roles each person has. It hasn’t really hit me yet that I’m gonna have an event on which is gonna be in front of people. So I’m trying to get my head around all the responsibility of that.