BBC Wales and Arts Council of Wales are today announcing that the search for Horizons artists to join its 2018 project is now underway. The applications process is now open and the 12 successful acts will be supported and promoted in various ways by Horizons over the next 12 months.
Horizons is a unique showcase of new, independent contemporary music in Wales. Now in its fourth-year, Horizons is a collaboration between BBC Wales and Arts Council of Wales.
Since its inception in 2014, Horizons has given a platform to over 36 emerging artists from Wales giving them support and mentoring to help them reach new audiences in Wales, the UK and beyond, and supported many more at festival stages and help release ambitions through the Launchpad fund.
The Horizons project aims to be a comprehensive showcase of promising talent in Wales. From providing promotional and performance opportunities, over the past four years Horizons has provided new Welsh acts with a breadth of support and some unforgettable experiences as they start their journeys into music.
Horizons acts have been showcased at some of the biggest festivals at home and internationally from Glastonbury, The Great Escape, Festival No.6, Sŵn, to Eurosonic and SXSW and performed sessions at the legendary Maida Vale Studios. In the three years of the project previous Horizons alumni include Candelas, Swnami, CaStLeS, Violet Skies, Afrocluster, Baby Queens, Kizzy Crawford, Seazoo, The People the Poet, Reuel Elijah, Danielle Lewis and many more who have benefitted from the Horizon’s Project.
– The 12 artists will be offered a platform at events across Wales and on BBC Wales’ national services – BBC Radio Cymru and BBC Radio Wales.
– Acts who want to be considered fill in a form online via bbc.co.uk/horizons. Horizons acts will be selected by a panel of experts from within the partnership and the wider music sector.
The Horizons project will be bringing music to many festivals over summer 2018 and will offer more exciting opportunities to Welsh musicians later in the year through its Launchpad funding scheme.
Also new for this year, The Horizons Project has hand picked 12 ‘Horizons bloggers’ who will help spread the word about the Horizons 12 new acts for 2018. Providing personal, insightful and in depth coverage of the acts selected with blogs, podcasts and exclusive content. Horizons Bloggers will also be appearing on panels and on the BBC to help promote the acts and the project’s work online and on social media.
Violet Skies, one of the artists from the 2015 Project says:
“It’s was a mad year for me as part of the Horizons scheme. I’ve been lucky enough to tick off a lot of things from my musical bucket list – The Great Escape, Festival No.6, Sŵn, Maida Vale and now, I’m looking forward to Eurosonic and SXSW festival. It’s been a lovely little Welsh family of talented musicians and a really good support team – it’s nice to turn up at festivals or a show knowing you have people there to help you. Writing and collaborating with other artists has been a highlight too, and having so many others going through the same as you is so reassuring.”
Lisa Gwilym, BBC Radio Cymru presenter said:
“What I enjoy most about the Horizons project is the opportunity to get to know 12 artists so much better. To be able to follow their journey over the year – from all the festivals to the famous Maida Vale studios – is extremely exciting. I can’t wait to hear and see the range of music on offer from the Horizons artists this year.”
Lisa Matthews, Portfolio Manager at the Arts Council of Wales, says:
“We’re proud to support Horizons for a further year and see another 12 artists have a creative and potentially career changing year. There’s been some incredible opportunities created so far and we’re looking forward with excitement more incredible music experiences.”
Bethan Elfyn, Project Manager of Horizons at BBC Wales, said:
“The music industry is constantly changing and it is a challenge to get new, unsigned artists heard in such a competitive world, but a challenge the Horizons team relish. We’ll have a special start to our festival calendar this year by revealing our new 12 at the Biggest Weekend Fringe Festival in Swansea, and putting on a whole host of acts across a whole week of activity in Swansea. That’s just the start and we look forward to a 12 month journey with the new artists.”
Applications are open from April 23 to Midnight, May 7, and announcements will follow from May 21 at the Biggest Weekend Fringe.