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Tuning in to the music industry

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Students with an interest in performing arts and the music industry are excited about a new extracurricular pilot programme.

The Business of Music after-school pilot programme was started two months ago by Berkeley Institute band director Christopher Darrell and Tha Underground founder Jonathan “JT” Talbot.

The group is hosting a concert this Saturday featuring American rapper Tyga. A rap competition will also be held as part of the evening's entertainment.

The after-school programme came about after one of Mr Darrell's students inquired about getting songs he had written published.

“I have a young kid who showed a great aptitude for songwriting, and he had come to me to help develop his talent,” he said.

“As a resource outside of school, I immediately thought of JT, because as long as I can remember he has been involved in the music scene in Bermuda and I have high regards for his expertise.

Mr Talbot, who has managed artists previously, suggested they offer expertise on all aspects of the music industry. The pair put their heads together and The Business of Music was born.

The first week saw over two dozen kids turn up.

“Basically the premise of the programme is to show these young people who are interested in hip hop and rap, dancing and so forth how to become a business professional within the music industry,” said Mr Darrell.

The programme covers all aspects of the music industry marketing, trademarking, branding and even royalties.

“[It's] so that they have an understanding from a legal and personal standpoint,” Mr Darrell said.

“[We also look at] what it means to be an agent, a manager, an executive producer, and also an artist. Everyone wants to be an artist, but we want them to understand that it is not just about getting up and singing. We all know there is so much talent in Bermuda, but talent doesn't necessarily do it, you have to have some business acumen.”

Mr Talbot added: “We want to give them some hands-on experience with event planning, so we are holding the Tyga Takeover concert and the Can You Rip It series competition.

“The Can You Rip It series competitions will be in three parts one is for rap, another is for singers, and the last is for dancers. Kids will be a part of the marketing team, the audio teams, lights and backstage crew. What they have learned in the programme, they will be able to put it into practise.”

Continued Mr Darrell: “We showed them [Tyga's] contract to show them what the real process is.

“We have taken them through the exercise so they can have an understanding that it is not just what you see on TV, it is more involved if you want to be successful.

“We are very passionate about being positive, proactive and purposeful in anything in life and it speaks to the fact that our young people just want a little guidance.”

Tickets, $30, are available from Sound Stage and Stefanel. Saturday's concert is divided into two parts: one for teens will take place at the Berkeley Institute from 6pm until 10pm. A second, for adults, starts at 10pm at Pier Six.

Listen up: In the music roomband director Christopher Darrell speaks with Berkeley Institute students who are involved in The Business of Music, an after-school pilot programme at the Berkeley Institute.
Here's the plan: Kenan Bailey, Willis Steede, Michelle Onyia and Amber Douglas work on a mission statement for their company, Green Light Studios as part of The Business of Music's after-school pilot programme at the Berkeley Institute.
Digital music: Hans-Peter Roser works on an audio track during The Business of Music's after-school pilot programme at the Berkeley Institute.
In tune: An impromptu performance by Hans-Peter Roser and Chianté Roberts during The Business of Music's after-school pilot programme at the Berkeley Institute.
Successful: Rap artist Tyga.
Aiming for a breakthrough: Five students were shortlisted from 30 for the Can You Rip It Series competition, which takes place on Saturday. Pictured are Berkeley Institute student Xhosi Bascome, Mount Saint Agnes Academy student Makeem “Haz-Ard-Ous” Bartley, Berkeley Institute student Cri'Anna Che'Lese, CedarBridge Academy student Shentione “Jbeatz” Lambert and Berkeley Institute student Glenn “Swifft” Simmons.

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Published March 31, 2011 at 2:00 am (Updated March 31, 2011 at 9:17 am)

Tuning in to the music industry

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