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Funding for Music Careers at the Kirklees Year of Music 2023 - Music Cities Forum

Updated: Oct 6

Kirklees Year of Music 2023 Music Cities Forum

"I also think having a session on funding and industry support will enable individuals to identify ways they can invest and raise funds to develop their careers or businesses."

Sarah Hutton , Coordinator, Kirklees Year of Music 2023

On November 14th, 2023, as part of the Music Industry strand of Kirklees Year of Music 2023, the Smile Bar and Venue in Huddersfield will be hosting the Kirklees Year of Music 2023 - Music Cities Forum alongside Music Cities Events.

This will be an event that will bring together the music community in Kirklees and will serve as an exercise to better understand the impact of all of the activities of this initiative and see the possibilities available to keep promoting music careers in the region in the coming years.

You can learn all about the topics of the Kirklees Music Year Music 2023 - Music Cities Forum and register for the event here.

As we get closer to this event, We invited Sarah Hutton, Coordinator, Kirklees Year of Music 2023, to give us some insights on what are the things that excite her the most about the Music Cities Forum, as well as let us know some details about her career in music and how she landed at her current role promoting this initiative.

How did you get to this point in your career, professionally?

I started out working alongside my husband running a recording studio, which also became a cutting room where we cut vinyl masters for various industry people, locally, regionally, and nationally, in due course I became interested in the business side of the industry and attended some initial seminars run by our collection agencies and Musicians Union to expand my knowledge.

I eventually ended up becoming an Artists Manager, which I did for five years teaching me a lot about the music business. I was approached by our local college to teach music business to their music students, in due course I ended-up teaching the music tech students as well as the music students.

I did this for 21 years. I was made redundant in 2016 and after a break I joined forces with an ex-student to start providing mentoring, training, talks and seminars to the client bass that attended his studio.

Through that we started to attend various Kirklees Council events that were about the Year of Music. It was here where I met Kath Wynne-Hague, which was in 2019.

In 2021 she approached me after the UK began opening from the Pandemic and when the council could get back to preparing for the Year of Music in 2023; she offered me the role of music industry coordinator for the Year of Music, where I would be responsible for the business development of the project.

How did the Kirklees Year of Music come about?

The West Yorkshire combined local authority decided they wanted to invest a percentage of their government funding into the cultural sector and offered each council region the opportunity to decide what area they wanted to focus on and the CEO of Kirklees Council chose music and from there the Year of Music was born.

Kirklees Year of Music 2023 Music Cities Forum

Give us a quick overview of the activities that KYOM has been doing over the past months.

There have been a wide range of activities that have run over the past few months, in fact too many to mention but they cover music events, music educational projects, health and wellbeing projects that use music to benefit health and through the music industry strand, seminars, webinars and the support of projects that create opportunities for the development of careers in the music industry. We have also supported a music festival and put on an artist showcase.

What excites you most about the upcoming Kirklees Year of Music - Music Cities Forum?

I’m really looking forward to the forum as I think it will be a great opportunity to gather important feedback from those working in the Kirklees music industry on how they would like to see our industry developed. It will also give them the opportunity to hear from others on what they have done and advice from professionals on their experiences.

Kirklees Year of Music 2023 Music Cities Forum

What do you think are the main challenges Kirklees faces as a music city?

I think one of the immediate challenges will be drawing down investment from the council through their government funds to build on the success of this year.

The other one is that Kirklees is spread out quite far, which in turn makes it quite difficult to pull people together so that they can work, support and network with each other.

Do you think the forum will help address them?

I am hoping that with the input from the guest panellists and those who have developed their industries through the support of Music Cities, will address these challenges and give ideas on how we can do this.

I also think having a session on funding and industry support will enable individuals to identify ways they can invest and raise funds to develop their careers or businesses.

Do you want to keep up to date with everything related to Music Cities Events and Music Cities topics? Then we invite you to also subscribe to our monthly newsletter.

Kirklees Year of Music 2023 Music Cities Forum

About the Kirklees Year of Music 2023 - Music Cities Forum:

“A Community That Lives And Loves Music”

Kirklees Year of Music 2023

Music Cities Forum

Smile Bar and Venue, Huddersfield

November 14th, 2023

4pm - 9pm

As part of the Music Industry strand of Kirklees Year of Music 2023, the district will be hosting the Kirklees Music Cities Forum alongside Music Cities Events.

The Music Cities Forum is a smaller version of the Music Cities Convention, an event that looks regionally at best practices on the use of music to improve city life.

This event brings together experts and industry professionals to explore the role and impact of music across education, economic development, health, youth, environment, community building, placemaking, tourism, the future of the city and more.

The Kirklees Music Cities Forum will be taking place on November 14th, 2023, at Smile Bar and Venue in Huddersfield.

The evening will explore the theme “A Community That Lives And Loves Music”.

Its sessions will give an overview of the activities of the Music Industry programme for Year of Music, including hosting the Kirklees Music Ecosystem Network, the PLATFORM programme and more.

Afterwards, it will dive into different presentations, panel discussions and workshops focused on bringing the local music community together and giving it resources to advocate for a stronger local music ecosystem.

This event is directed to all members and advocates of the music and artistic ecosystem, as well as people working on projects related to economic development, public policy and community organisations.

The event sessions include:

  • Kirklees Year Of Music 2023 - A Vision For Change, a presentation on the activity as part of the KYOM23 Music Industry strand

  • Make It In Kirklees: What Can We Do To Make People Stay in Kirklees To Develop Their Music Careers?, a panel discussion on career development opportunities for local musicians.

  • Support Available, a presentation on funding opportunities for music projects by Help Musicians.

  • Being Small Is No Obstacle, a case study on building a small sized music region.

  • Using Music To Revitalise The Region: Affordability and Accessibility In The Music Ecosystem, a panel discussion on giving the region the infrastructure to become a thriving” music region”.

  • What Next?, a hands on workshop dedicated on exploring the future of the local music industry

  • Live Show by Fishing4Compliments

Full line up of speakers and performers will be revealed throughout September.

Access to all information related to this event and register for it at:

About the Kirklees Year of Music:

Kirklees Year of Music in 2023, is a unique, place-based, cultural change programme initiated and led by Kirklees Council, part of the wider cultural offer in the region of West Yorkshire over the coming three years. 2023 is designated as a Year of Music for the district and, through investment in the district’s diverse music talent, communities and businesses, the year-long programme of events and projects, will strengthen the music ecology of Kirklees from its roots.

2023 is celebrating the richness and diversity of Kirklees music heritage, the music created and performed today, and the ambition for the future, inclusive of all music genres, all communities and in all forms.

Kirklees is a place where everyone can hear world class music through festivals and programming; where children and young people have access to high quality musical experiences and education; and where the next generation of musicians and music professionals can build and sustain a high-quality career, with access to the very best industry advice, career opportunities and performance routes.

Follow all activities of the Kirkless Year of Music 2023 at:

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