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Calling all local musicians – new paid commission opportunity!

A new commission is being offered to musicians to undertake community engagement projects in Hastings over Winter 2020-2021. Local arts collective Project Art Works have been commissioned by the Hastings Heritage Action Zone team to curate the cultural programme and to commission artists, initially for a pilot project. Stella Keen, a cultural partner on the Trinity Triangle Heritage Action Zone programme, explains.

Project Art Works are looking for four musicians or music groups, who will each engage and work with local community groups and the area (online or in a safe physical space), to create and perform original compositions that can be shared within the Trinity Triangle Heritage Action Zone during the spring of 2021. The deadline for applications for this exciting music project is 5pm on Friday 20 November.

This music project is the pilot for a proposed cultural programme, which itself is part of the wider programme of social and built environment redevelopment led by a group of local organisations and cultural partners.

Image courtesy of Project Artworks, Hastings

As the artistic director and CEO of Project Art Works, Kate Adams MBE, states, “Musicians have been profoundly hit by COVID-19 and the impact on freelance opportunities. Hastings has a great music scene and many, many talented musicians living locally. We wanted to make space for them to do what they do best and to bring some joyous music-making to our lives over the coming months.”

The aim of the project is to engage skilled local musicians and communities in a performance and celebration of people and place – specifically the Trinity Triangle in central Hastings. By offering four commissions, Project Art Works say they are recognising the need to support the creative community facing continued financial pressure and hardships during continued Covid-19 restrictions.

Applications will be accepted from individual musicians, groups/ensembles, either as a single entity (working with one community group) or as a collaboration (each individual within the group/ensemble working with a separate local community group to create a collaborative output).

Expression of interest

Applicants will be expected to create a short expression of interest that will describe a methodology for their process and what they will do/who they might work with.The fee for the commission is £1,600 for each artist/artist group (£6,400 in total) with 50% paid at the start of the commission and 50% on completion. This is inclusive of expenses but they do not expect musicians to pay for the costs of providing access for community groups (such as venue hire for workshops/ rehearsals), or production costs directly associated with the final output. Please contact Project Artworks for clarification of fees/expenses and costs.

Project Art Works are committed to commissioning artists that are representative of the community they serve. They therefore welcome applications from all backgrounds and all sections of the community, and will endeavour to make the application process as accessible as possible.

This project is part of the Trinity Triangle Heritage Action Zone – a major programme of community-led regeneration in central Hastings funded by Historic England. The Trinity Triangle Heritage Action Zone (TTHAZ) is a four-year regeneration programme supported by Historic England to breathe new life into an historic part of Hastings town centre: the Trinity Triangle and America Ground.

The vision for the four-year period includes working in partnership with local organisations including community groups, businesses and local government to deliver a wide variety of regeneration and cultural projects. The projects will be produced in collaboration with diverse local communities. They will be celebrating people’s ideas, helping them to shape the places in which they live and work, and promote stories about this special, historic neighbourhood. This community-led programme of regeneration will protect and improve the area’s buildings and heritage for the future.

Greater representation of the marginalised

Kate Adams asserts: “Our organisation works toward greater representation of marginalised people in culture. We have strong relationships with many local caregivers and neuro-minorities through our programmes and strong collaborative partnerships with local and regional galleries. Most recently our three-year project Explorers commissioned neurodiverse artists, programmed a series of seminars, conferences, events and happenings and produced a new film, Illuminating the Wilderness, that has been shortlisted for the Film London Jarman Award 2020.”

Image courtesy of Holy Trinity Church, Hastings

“In celebrating the free-spirited and independent community of the Trinity Triangle,” Kate Adams explains, “we wanted to continue to build deeper local relationships through a cultural programme that focuses on the assets of this unique site and invite Hastings residents and communities to participate.

“We will be working in collaboration with a brilliant and wide range of artists and organisations based in Hastings and St Leonards, HAZ and all partners. We want to generate aspiration for the area through art and creative actions. The HAZ pilot will launch a pulse of events and artworks over the next few years focused on a diverse representation of artists and local people.”

For consideration for this project, they are asking musicians to send a one-page statement of intent to by 5pm on Friday 20 November 2020, outlining specifically:

  • Your experience as a musician, composer and performer, and any experience of working with local community groups, outreach or socially engaged practice
  • Your approach to this commission, and any ideas you have for themes, collaborations or the creative outputs
  • How you will identify and work with your chosen local community group

PAW are asking people not to send CVs. Informal interviews will be held with Project Art Works in the week commencing 30 November. Successful applicants will be notified on or before Friday 4 December.

For more details on this project and how to apply, see their website or for an informal chat about the commission please contact, telephone 01424 423555.

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Posted 18:06 Saturday, Nov 14, 2020 In: Music & Sound

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