Magical music collaboration LIVE@TheRoyal
Over 60 established and emerging musicians took part in a week-long festival of original live music at Theatre Royal Waterford at Easter.
Starting on Easter Monday, 41 teenage musicians arrived at the theatre for Jam@TheRoyal, an intensive live music experience for young creatives in partnership with Music Generation Waterford. One Day 1, many of these young musicians didn’t know each other and had never played in a band before, though they’d been playing music on their own for at least three years.
They were put into bands by the Jam@TheRoyal team and spent three days rehearsing a set, working with a team of professional gigging musicians and technicians. Three days later, six brand new bands performed on Theatre Royal’s main stage in front of a live audience.
The tunes continued throughout the week, with sold out solo gigs in Theatre Royal’s intimate Backstage venue from some of Ireland’s critically-acclaimed, Mercury and Choice Prize-nominated artists, featuring Gemma Hayes on Thursday night and Lisa Hannigan and Paul Noonan on Friday night, supported by Waterford artists Tara Ní Chinnéide (Aliens in Caves) and Naoise.
Naoise LIVE@TheRoyal. | Photo: Trevor McGrath
The teenage musicians were joined by more established Waterford musicians in the theatre on Saturday afternoon for ‘In Conversation…’ a masterclass with BellX1 frontman Paul Noonan and artist manager, booking agent, tour manager and event producer Una Molloy, who runs the Dublin-based music agency Turning Pirate. Paul and Una shared their knowledge and insights about the Irish live music industry, offering advice on how to approach and work with an agent, negotiating fees and touring.
Live@The Royal culminated with a main stage gig on Saturday night, with Gemma, Paul and Lisa presenting a collaborative new show featuring songs, stories and craic, supported by Tara and Naoise.
Theatre Royal Director Mary Boland said Live@TheRoyal, which is supported by The Arts Council, was built on an ethos of collaboration and sharing:
“The live music industry is all about meeting people, learning from the people you meet and taking it all in. With Live@TheRoyal, our aim was to provide space for musicians to meet and collaborate with each other, as well as introducing younger artists to some of the most experienced gigging original artists in the country. The first half of the week, during Jam@TheRoyal, we had young musicians jamming in literally every corner of our building, meeting other young artists with similar musical tastes and also benefitting from working with a team of professional musicians and technicians. After putting on a live gig of their own, they then had the opportunity to hear from professionals who are making their living in the Irish music industry, so all the benefits of their hard-earned wisdom was passed down to the next generation of musicians.”
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