Brand-new boost to create live music gigs for alumni

#UHIMusicLive will host two music sessions, every Wednesday and Friday night, for four weeks from Wednesday, November 18.

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The University of the Highlands and Islands has announced its first ‘live stream music tour’, featuring alumni who will receive a fee for their performance.

This new initiative has been set-up by the university to show its support for its music alumni community, which has been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

#UHIMusicLive will host two music sessions, every Wednesday and Friday night, for four weeks from today, Wednesday November 18. All performers are alumni of the university and will be paid for their 45 minute live set on Facebook. Fees are being donated by several individuals and companies who also want to show their support in these difficult times.

Talking about how this initiative came to life, Pete Honeyman, Creative and Cultural Industries subject network leader, said: ‘The University of the Highlands and Islands has been at the forefront of music education in Scotland for many years and we offer support to our students for life.

‘These are extremely challenging times for the music industry, with live music forbidden and social distancing requirements making it almost impossible for group music-making to take place and we wanted to find a way to support our alumni.

‘We’ve creatively combined our skills and resources to design, produce, promote and, importantly, make sure the performers are paid a fee, which has been achieved through the generosity of donors.

‘We have been privileged to watch many of our alumni grow and maintain successful careers, entertaining many with live performances by at venues locally and worldwide from working bands and artists such as Julie Fowlis, The Rezillos, Nazareth, Stiltskin, Runrig, Wolfstone, Belle and Sebastian, Texas and many, many more. #UHIMusicLive will allow this tradition to continue while we patiently await a return to live music.’

Alison Wilson, Head of Development at the University of the Highlands and Islands, added: ‘We have had such a great response from the donors invited to support #UHIMusicLive.

‘The spirit of community, people coming together to help our students and alumni through the challenges faced by Covid-19, is just wonderful. A huge thank you to everyone who has stepped forward to help us this year.

‘All donations we receive from individuals and business, no matter what size, make a real difference, especially during these uncertain times.

‘We want to continue to raise funds to help our students and alumni affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, through initiatives like this music fund and the emergency study fund, as well as our regular funds, scholarships and prizes. Please, if you can donate, get in touch by emailing development@uhi.ac.uk or visit the website www.uhi.ac.uk/development to find out more.’

To watch any of the live performances, visit the university’s Facebook page every Wednesday and Friday night at 8.30pm. You can also ‘like’ the university’s page to get notifications when the alumni go live.