The music collective helping artists to get back on stage after pandemic uncertainty
A music collective is hoping to get its talented performers noticed by those in the industry with the release of a new CD.
South Shields-based community interest company, ITS Entertainment, has been supporting dozens of North East artists throughout the coronavirus pandemic.
From organising live stream performances, to creating a professional recording studio, Into The Studio – based at Age Concern on Beach Road – the company has gone above and beyond to help performers navigate what has been an uncertain time for the entertainment industry.
Company director, Ian Curry, manages opportunities for the acts and also runs Into The Spotlight, a live performance initiative in South Tyneside and the North East.
He said: “ITS Entertainment CIC had singers live streaming and also performing outside of care homes when we were able to, before and during lockdown, in an attempt to reduce social isolation and lift people’s morale.
“After lockdown, we set up a professional recording studio and record label with emphasis on making music production and distribution affordable to all.
“We run a young performers group weekly outside of holiday times with vocal coaching from Shannon Leigh Hurst as well as offering rehearsal space and free use of our recording studio on Wednesdays.”
Now that live music has returned to venues following the ending of restrictions, I.T.S Entertainment is also helping artists to secure gigs across the region.
Into The Spotlight performers have been putting on free monthly shows at the Crown and Anchor, Jarrow, the Chirton Club, North Shields, and Three Tuns, Gateshead in the hope of securing paid shows.
And in an effort to promote the artists to potential bookers, the music collective is also working on a free CD with producer Tom Compton, which will feature their tracks.
Music from around 20 artists will feature on the CD, including tracks from Michael Houghton; Shannon Leigh Hurst; Darren Mitchell; Ami Leigh; Daniel Curry and Jonathan Honour.
Other artists include Lulin Moon, Emerald Blue and Alisar Jane from True Colours Theatre.
Ian, 47, said: “We are really enjoying getting together and providing showcase opportunities for singers, songwriters and musicians.
"They perform free of charge in the hope that venues will give them paid bookings if they impress.