In 2007, session cellist, artist and educator, Ivan Hussey came to live in Ramsgate. Through working as a lecturer at East Kent College, he saw that the area had many young people with good musical talent but very little chance of working in the music industry, due to the lack of industry links in the area. In September 2013, Ivan created MAP (Musicians’ Academy Programme) with the aim to bridge this gap.
MAP is both an academy and an agency (Musicians, Artists, Producers).
MAP Platinum is a weekly programme that works with young musicians and artists aged 18 to 25 to prepare them for work in the industry. On completion of the two year programme, graduates join MAP Agency for presentation to the industry.
The agency has seen some recent successes. Drummer, Toby Evangelou has begun working with Sony Artist Sam Sure, who is tipped for big things in 2016 and recently supported Rudimental at Ibiza Rocks festival. Guitarist, Courtney Jones has begun working with Singer Songwriter Emae and singer Marilyn Sky appears on Roots Manuva’s new album, due for release later in 2015.
The agency’s original artists and bands have been performing throughout Kent. Singer songwriters Big Steve and Ross Uttridge both performed at the KMFM Events in Thanet and Maidstone and both Marilyn Sky and The Courtney Jones Trio appeared at this year’s Ramsgate Festival.
To create a MAP ladder from 7 year olds upwards Ivan has partnered with Brendan Cahill, with the aim of bringing an authentic music industry experience to young people in East Kent. These new programmes were unveiled in September 2015 aimed at younger musical talent.
MAP Junior is open to 7 – 11 year olds who have an interest in music, whether they play an instrument or not. The key focus of MAP Junior is to explore a broad range of music areas, while the MAP staff assess each member’s strengths. This could unearth a natural ability in any given area of music.
MAP Silver is aimed at 11 – 15 year olds who already play an instrument or sing and are keen to start developing as performance musicians or expressing themselves as music artists.
The 2 hour weekly sessions will take place after school in both Margate and Whitstable and on Saturdays in Canterbury.
The additional benefits are that MAP uses music as a way of developing creative thinking and originality in young people.
Ivan says: “Young musicians often struggle to form bands and develop their own style, that’s where MAP Silver can help them, while performing live and exploring the wider industry”.
Brendan says: “7 – 11 year olds are often unsure where their true music talents lie, through MAP Junior they can try different areas and find their instrument or voice while having fun.”