Peter Bacon reports:
The 2018 Ed Renshaw Music Award, the bi-annual award in memory of the young musician whose guitar talents were acclaimed and who died far too young, is being offered for the third time and applications are needed in the next fortnight.
Set up in memory of Renshaw by his family and friends in 2012, the award is intended to help young musicians in South East London to achieve their potential. The Albany performing arts centre in Deptford, together with Peter Conway Management and, for the first time this year, Youth Music, are behind the award.
The first winners in 2014 were drummer David Dyson and singer/songwriter Lucy Cait. In 2016 there were three winners: singer/songwriter/guitarist Jay Johnson, DJ/producer Blinkz Virgo and singer/songwriter Megan Tuck.
The press release gives the background: “Ed Renshaw was a gifted musician. He was born in Greenwich in 1981 and went to Thomas Tallis School. At the age of 10 he discovered the guitar, decided that music was to be his life, and worked at it with total commitment. He had a rare talent for the instrument, equally fluent in classical, jazz and other styles. But he also struggled bravely against bouts of depression until tragically one ended his life in 2011.”
Winners of the award not only receive cash prizes of between £1,000 and £3,000 to help fund their careers, but also mentoring and industry support from Peter Conway Management, and space to practise and perform at the Albany, as well as artist development support.
Winners will also be a part of four ‘Evenings for Ed’: charity gig events at the Albany, taking place from Wednesday 31 October to Saturday 3 November with headline acts to be announced later this year.
The award is for young musicians, whether they be solo artists or in a group, between the ages of 16 and 25 who live in South East London. The judging panel is made up of representatives from the Albany, Peter Conway Management and Ed’s family and friends. They are looking for artists who not only display musical talent and performance skills, but also original music, savvy business plans and a passion to forge a successful musical career.
HOW TO APPLY
Application forms can be found on The Albany website. Applications close on Thursday 28 June. Shortlisted applicants will be interviewed by the awards panel on Saturday 14 July.