Now in its seventh year, the Cultural Education Partnership between LJMU and Sound City, Liverpool’s much-loved music festival, has had its most successful year yet, as hundreds of students benefit from work placements, internships, creative projects and discounted ticket offers.
From creating gig posters and painting the décor, to working in groups to create videos, manage social media and interview bands – students from a wide variety of courses were involved in Sound City this year.
Liverpool Screen School students, led by producers Eilisha McNally and James Lyall, took up various roles including: film crew, photographers, social media managers and vloggers. The team had access to the entire three-day festival with press passes, providing them with access to all venues, pressroom and the photography pit on the main stage. Organised through the Production Unit Liverpool Screen School, the students received a brief to produce two videos: a longer length documentary and a one-minute music video which will feature on MNOW, China’s largest entertainment channel.
Students from the Liverpool School of Art and Design produced a variety of eye-catching gig posters to promote Sound City. The posters were displayed on Newhall Street during the bank holiday weekend.
Students from the Liverpool Business School also took advantage of placements and events during Sound City. Two Marketing students, Cara Harkin and Alex Marchent, along with Events Management student Mili Costa were successful in their application to undertake a 12-week placement following a competitive interview process. They worked across sponsorship, marketing and production – impressing the organisers with their professionalism. Entrepreneurs from the Liverpool Business School were given the opportunity to produce a business plan and pitch their ideas to Sound City judges via the Entrepreneurship Challenge, with winning ideas receiving complementary tickets and a showcase at the festival.
Entrepreneurship Challenge finalists included:
Strawb, a reusable metal straw product available in a variety of colours developed by Joe Malone, Jessica Swebe, Abi Cuffling, James Norton and Sarah Mdoughy. The team were connected with various Sound City venues to make their product available to the general public.
Road Relief is a useful kit to help out drivers who don’t know the basics of fixing their car. The product is developed by Nick Venables, Jorge Percival, Chloe Wyner, Rachel Stevens and Faye Marsh.
Glitz n Co is a biodegradable glitter in a gel that is easy to peel off, vegan friendly and presented in a reusable tin. It's been developed by Claire Murphy, Laura Mceachern, Alexandra Pierce, Laura Johnson and Georgia Peters.
Finally, the team which won the best pitch concept by the Centre for Entrepreneurship was Mixed Liquor Toppers, a variety of different flavours which can be added to alcoholic or non-alcoholic drinks. The winning team were: Cara Harkin, Taith Mc Williams, Hannah Butler, Abbi Smith, Mathew Guy and Liam Bruce.
Sound City introduced a new initiative this year, bringing together students with industry professionals in one-to-one sessions during the Sound City conference. Liverpool Business School student, Paige Oulton thought the sessions were eye-opening: "It was a worthwhile afternoon. It was very interesting learning about the industry and even though I had never considered the music industry as a field in the future, it definitely made me consider it as a potential career option".