By PAUL JOHNSON
Brand-new, 2020, multi-million-pound, West Midlands, state-of-the-art music institute takes a new approach to recruiting students.
A multi-million pound music institute set to revolutionise the way that musical education is taught is taking the show on the road to meet prospective students before it opens its doors for the first time in 2020.
Resonance, the newest Higher Education provider in the Midlands, is taking a band of seasoned musicians on the road to play at colleges up and down the country to show students what the music industry has to offer – from production and business careers to performance and digital music.
The not-for-profit institute has been set up by music industry experts to help plug the growing skills gap faced by the industry.
The Resonance Roadshow band of music professionals will show prospective music students what the brand new state-of-the-art music institute is all about.
Based at the spectacular Waterfront in Brierley Hill, Dudley, just over half an hour from Birmingham City Centre, Resonance will be opening the doors to its first cohort of students next year. Organisers of the roadshow will use the tour to highlight the myriad of careers available in the music industry – many of which are covered by the degree courses on offer at Resonance.
Co-director Rick Benton, who plays keyboard with West Midlands icons Magnum, has assembled a band of talented musicians to help demonstrate how Resonance could kick-start a career in the music industry.
Singer with the roadshow band is Samantha Dorrance, 27, who while being a singer/songwriter in her own right, is also a children’s TV presenter and face of the Disney Channel.
She is joined by guitarist Greg Platt Lake, a session musician who has been working professionally since leaving school at the age of 16, and has worked all over the world with acts such as Steve Winwood & Robert Plant.
They will be joined by session drummers Lloyd Draker and Richard Kirk, who has played with the likes of Scorpions guitarist Uli Jon Roth and the Grey Goose Blues Band; bassist Dan Clark who has played alongside Steve Vai, Scott Matthews and Beverley Knight; and Rick himself on the keys.
“We’re all looking forward to packing up our instruments into the back of a van and heading off around the country to spread the word of Resonance,” said Rick.
“For us it’ll be like gigging as many of us have done for years, but these roadshows will be a unique way for us to demonstrate to young people considering a career in music how great coming to Resonance will be for them. It will be one of the best institutes of its kind in the country and I have no doubt that a lot of people will thrive in the learning environment we are creating.”
As well as performing songs and engaging students in music techniques, the sessions will also aim to provide a wider picture about careers in music.
“One of the things we are keen to stress here at Resonance is that while a career on stage is something that many will aspire too, there are lots of other careers in music you can follow,” said David Barnard, fellow co-director at Resonance.
“From the expertise needed for a live show to happen, to things like music teaching, the opportunities within the industries are endless. The point of these shows is to show the students that whatever their ambition is within music, Resonance can help them achieve it.”
Resonance will be offering degree courses in Popular Music Performance, Popular Music Production, Popular Music Performance and Production, Digital Music and Music Business from 2020.
Councillor Ian Kettle, cabinet member for regeneration and enterprise at Dudley Council, told Sardines: “The roadshows are the start of an exciting journey which will bring hundreds of students to the new music institute in the borough, really putting Dudley on the national map.
“Resonance will be at the heart of DY5, Dudley’s Business and Innovation Enterprise Zone, and will massively boost both our local and regional economy.”
DETAILS IN BRIEF:
Resonance is taking over the Cable Plaza building at The Waterfront Business Park in Brierley Hill, Dudley, and is set to open its doors in September 2020.
Places at Resonance will be limited to ensure that students get the best teaching and practical experiences. Applicants will need between 96 and 112 UCAS points before being invited to audition for their place.
Undergraduate degrees on offer (to start in September 2020):
- BMus (Hons) Popular Music Performance.
- BA (Hons) Popular Music Performance & Production.
- BA (Hons) Popular Music Production.
- BA (Hons) Digital Music.
- BA (Hons) Music Business.
- By its third year, Resonance is hoping to offer an MA in Contemporary Music Performance.