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  • Writer's pictureSTEVE COOKE AATA

MIDWEEK COLUMN WEDNESDAY 17 APRIL 2024




 previews, reviews, interviews, and recommendations with Steve Cooke

   



                                               

 

The local meets the global on Earth Day 2024 at Rochdale Central Library.

Preview by Steve Cooke


Force of Nature is a free, family-friendly live music and spoken word performance developed by Community Arts North West (CAN) as part of Rochdale’s celebrations of Earth Day 2024.



Rochdale’s Earth Day 2024 events have been developed through a partnership with Rochdale Libraries, CAN, Rochdale Borough Council, Your Trust, and Touchstones. The event takes place at Number 1, Riverside on Saturday 20 April, between 12 pm and 3pm. 


Force of Nature is led by The Song Warriors: Sarah Yaseen, Emmanuela Yogolelo, and Meduulla, accompanied by a six-strong band. The performance features African Agwaya, hip-hop, and spoken word.


The performance connects the global to the local in a conversation about climate change and inequality. Climate change that is disproportionately affecting countries in the developing world, including Pakistan, India, and Bangladesh.


Performers appearing in Force of Nature have appeared individually at leading venues and festivals, including RNCM, Band On The Wall, the world music festival, WOMAD, the Women of the World Festival, Manchester Jazz Festival, and the Leeds and Reading Music festivals.  Hip-hop artist Meduulla was a finalist in BBC’s The Rap Game UK and had her music picked as Track of the Week on BBC 1Xtra Radio.


The Force of Nature performance also features Rochdale Women’s Welfare Association members who will share their reflections on environmental sustainability in Pakistan.

The group have been working with poet and spoken word artist Sarah Yaseen.

Sarah Yaseen worked with the Rochdale Women’s Welfare Association for over a month to run writing and memory workshops about the changes to the environment in Pakistan. With many women having family roots in Pakistan, the group knows how the climate emergency seriously impacts the country.


Pakistan experienced unprecedented floods in 2022. More than 33 million people were directly affected, with a staggering 20.6 million requiring urgent humanitarian assistance. The consequences were dire – nearly eight million people were displaced and at least two million houses destroyed. 


As part of the workshops, Sarah has shared how Pakistan is now leading the way in taking positive steps to address climate change, such as through the Ten Billion Trees Tsunami programme.



Sarah Yaseen, artist and workshop leader, says:

“It’s important that women’s voices are heard in raising awareness of the climate emergency and highlighting how countries like Pakistan are suffering the impacts of climate change to a far greater degree than countries in the West, despite the West producing far more carbon emissions.”

“In places like Pakistan, climate change is causing extreme weather, including record temperature, storms, flooding, and droughts. It’s causing food shortages, worsening poverty, and forcing people to leave their homes.”

“And, nearer to home, climate change inequality will impact the UK’s poorer communities through rising food prices.”

“Now is the time to raise awareness about climate justice, and what better way than through art, music and poetry?

"It’s brilliant to be performing Force of Nature in Rochdale Library taking the climate change message to library users. CAN’s performances in libraries previously and we hope to see some moves amongst the shelves on 20 April.”

Number 1, Riverside on Saturday 20 April, between 12 pm and 3pm. 

 

Music Artists supported by Factory International’s latest talent development opportunities.

By Steve Cooke


Factory International has announced some of the artists benefitting from a selection of development opportunities, as it looks to support the next generation of creatives across the North of England.


Factory International runs a development programme for those in Manchester's music scene called Factory Sounds. Successful applicants are offered £1,000 of financial support towards the creation of a new project, peer-to-peer support, a series of regular masterclasses in artist management, promotion and fundraising demystifying the industry – plus access to Factory International’s talent development programmes and networking opportunities.


The Factory Sounds 2024 cohort will create new music, mix, master and press albums, produce films, invest in recording and studio equipment, collaborate with other artists and musicians, and run workshops and spaces that will help Manchester’s scene even further.


Meet the artists:





RenzNiro, an artist and producer, will be creating a new music project that explores class, blackness, the diasporic experience and friendship. The Factory Sounds support will go towards RenzNiro’s studio costs, the mixing, mastering and PR around the release of the project later this year.



STEAM Radio MCR is a community station that provides a platform for emerging hosts to hone their skills, and for emerging artists to platform their music. Through Factory Sounds they will upgrade the studio equipment to radio industry standard, not only for their roster of 70 resident hosts, but also to run radio production workshops aimed at people from disadvantaged backgrounds.





Rumbi Tauro is a soulful R&B performer from Zimbabwe. The Factory Sounds support will help in the creation of an independently released EP.





J.Chambers is a DJ, Reggae rap artist and spoken word poet, whose upcoming album Homecoming explores his Jamaican roots. Alongside the album he’ll release a documentary around his visit to the country and the creation of the album. Through these projects he hopes to encourage other young black people of the diaspora to discover their heritage.





Caitlin LM, an electronic producer, vocalist and multi-instrumentalist will use the support to give themselves creative space to write and create more music.

Algernon Cornelius, a rapper and producer involved in the UK DIY music scene will create a collaborative album featuring a curated selection of local electronic artists as producers, alongside a film that will be released alongside the record.





Thraa have recently recorded their second album. The drone band will create a limited run of vinyl albums to sell at their upcoming live shows.





CHARMS is a DJ and Radio host who will invest in home recording equipment and software so they can create music alongside their full-time job. They will also use the support to create a live streamed show platforming women and non-binary artists within sound system culture.





Saint Harmony’s debut EP Solace will be created through the Factory Sounds process. From studio and rehearsal time, collaborations artists and instrumentalists, and promotional artwork, the singer-songwriter’s EP will follow a journey of healing.



Danny H is an artist, producer, composer, sound engineer, guitarist, drummer, vocalist and director of record label ‘On the Beats’ which aims to empower and support South Asian musicians. Factory Sounds will help him create, release and promote a new body of work, exploring his queer background, as well as themes of love, trust and betrayal.





FLUFF is a regular queer electronica night set up by the artists Norrisette and Industries. Through Factory Sounds they want to find more accessible and disability-friendly venues, so they can continue their work offering a warm and inviting space for LGBT+ electronic music producers in Manchester to perform and test out original music with a live audience.


Factory International’s Head of Music Rivca Burns says "We've had such an incredible amount of applications to this year's callout and the quality was unbelievable proving that Greater Manchester is brimming with talent. The cohort for this year's Factory Sounds is such an eclectic blend of genre and musicianship that really reflects the region and with such a variety of projects that they hope to achieve, it’s truly exciting to be with them on this journey."


To date, Factory Sounds has supported over 36 musicians to bands, producers, rappers, singers, collectives, record labels, recording studios and artists to create music management companies, finance the release of singles, EPs and albums, fit out recording studios, run production workshops, and support in their tours.


Factory International’s Artist Development Manager Punam Ramchurn states “It’s so exciting to see so much music talent in the region - we were overwhelmed by the response and struggled to finalise the last eleven!  I’m sure it’ll just be the beginning of their journey for these talented creatives, and I look forward to supporting them and watching them progress and become part of the Factory International Family.”

 

RECOMMENDED

 

Thursday 18 April 2024

Riverside Writing Group

This is a weekly facilitated and welcoming workshop open to all writers over eighteen years whether new or experienced.

You can join them, just bring a pen and your imagination.

Free

Phone: Eileen Earnshaw 07514 671283

10am - 12 noon

Rochdale Central Library, Number One Riverside, Smith Street, Rochdale OL16 1XU

 

Thursday 18 April 2024 - Saturday 20 April 2024

Visit Fireground Museum

Join us at Fireground this week to discover Greater Manchester's firefighting story.

Fire museum attractions are on show inside the museum including our collection of historic firefighting artefacts from the 18th century to present day, plus home-made

refreshments in the new Fireground Café, and souvenirs from our fantastic new gift shop! We have a wide choice ranging from toddler to collector.

Under 4s are free, Children (aged 4-15) and Concessions £5, Adults £7 and Family (4 people) £20.

Phone: Fireground 01706 341219

Open Thursday, Friday & Saturday from 10am - 4pm

Fireground, Maclure Road, Rochdale OL11 1DN

 

Friday 19 April 2024

Opera Boys – A Night at the Musicals

After a SOLD OUT show in 2023 The Opera Boys are back with A Night at the Musicals, a fabulous evening of power-house vocals, immaculate 4-part harmony, breath-taking musical medleys, stunning solo performances… and a few surprises!

Whether you’re a fan of modern-day smash hit musicals like Mamma Mia, Hairspray and Jersey Boys, prefer the classics from the likes of Gershwin and Rodgers & Hammerstein, or adore the definitive masterpieces like Les Misérables, Phantom of the Opera and West Side Story, this show has something for everyone and is perfect for musical theatre lovers both young and old.

They have performed as backing vocalists to some of the world’s biggest superstars including Russell Watson, Robbie Williams, Tom Jones and Elton John.

Tickets from £22

Phone: Middleton Arena 0300 303 8633 

7.30pm

Middleton Arena, LCpl Joel Halliwell VC Way, Middleton M24 1AG

 

Saturday 20 April 2024

Mayor's Charity Ball

The Mayor of Rochdale presents Spring Charity Ball.

Join us for a ball in aid of the Mayor of Rochdale's charities. This will be a fantastic evening of entertainment, including:

A reception drink on arrival

A three-course dinner and limited wine available on your table

After dinner entertainment

Dress code: black tie/evening dress.

The charity ball will be one of the first events taking place in the amazing Rochdale Town Hall after a grand restoration.

Book tickets in advance by emailing mayoral@rochdale.gov.uk. You will need to provide your name, email address and number of tickets you want to buy.

Tickets are £50 per person or £450 for a table of ten.

The bar will be open till midnight.

Phone: Rochdale Town Hall 01706 924773

Reception at 7pm - late

Rochdale Town Hall, The Esplanade, Rochdale OL16 1AB

 

Saturday 20 April 2024

Public Museum Talk

Rochdale Pioneers Museum is launching a new regular museum talk.

Book on to learn more about the story of the Rochdale Pioneers and the UK co-operative movement at a talk delivered by one of their friendly museum staff.

The talk will last approximately 45 minutes and you are free to look around the museum on your own before or afterwards.

Places are limited and need to be booked in advance: https://www.co-operativeheritage.coop/Event/museum-talk

The cost is £3 per person. However, we know that money can be tight, so if you want to attend, but don't feel able to pay the £3, you can also choose a free ticket on their website.

Phone: Fanny Reiter 01706 524920

1pm - 2pm

Rochdale Pioneers Museum, 31 Toad Lane, Rochdale OL12 0NU

 




celebrating creative arts and artists - an oasis of positivity supporting individual and community wellbeing.


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