'The Collective' as part of East Side Arts Festival

September 28, 2018

A one night only concert took place in the Park Avenue Hotel as part of the EastSide Arts Festival featuring someone of the most promising young artists in Northern Ireland as 'The Collective', funded by the Arts and Business Investment Programme.




Have a look at the highlights for yourself...

Lucy Bell, Ben Cutler, Michael James Warke and Ronan McSorley have been part of the Forestside Artist Development Programme and for this concert they were partnered with some of Northern Irelands leading musicians to form a house band compromising of Anthony Toner on guitar, Nick Scott on bass, Davy Bates on drums and John McCullough on keyboards.

Support on the night was from Conor Marcus, Jonny Hammond, Eilis Mulholland and Shannon Weatherup.

Keep watch this week for more videos an photos to follow.

Ben Cutler began playing at 12 years of age and in the same year went on to win the U/16 category at Banbridge Buskfest.  He became one of the youngest to have ever performed at Belfast Nashville Songwiters Convention.

In 2016 he featured in the UK top 10 of the Song Academys Songwriters Competition which seen him go on to perform at the winners showcase in London.

Ben returned to Banbridge Buskfest in 2018 to compete against over 100 buskers and win overall at the age of 14.  

Have a look at his performance as part of  EastSide Arts Festival with the all star 'house band'.

Lucy Bell began playing the guitar at the age of 13/14 and from there her love of music progressed.  Lucy was awarded Panarts Young Songwriter of the Year 2017 which seen her travelling to Nashville and having the opportunity of playing in the famous Bluebird Cafe.

Lucy was placed first in the female category at Holywood Festival Busking Competition in 2017. In 2018 won overall in the Draperstown Busking Festival which gained her a slot in the Atlantic Sessions.

She has played at various music festivals, featured on TV and local radio stations as well as being mentioned in the Hot Press Magazine as 'a rising star you should watch for.'

Here's Lucy performance at the EastSide Arts Festival as part of 'The Collective'


More fantastic performances to follow next week!!


Michael-James, originally a drummer has been writing his own material but never picked up the guitar till he was 15.  He began to showcase his work playing in local coffee shops and bars with other musicians to grow his craft. 

He first made himself known in the scene by entering Forestside Singer Songwriter Competition in which Michael James was placed in the top 3.  The competition brought with it an opportunity for him to  perform at the Belfast Nashville Songwriters Festival. 

In May 2017 MJ released his debut EP 'Time.' Being the multi-instrumentalist he is, this was recorded and produced by himself in his bedroom. 

MJ was delighted to be asked to join Skinny Living on their European tour in their Belfast Show at the Oh Yeah Centre.

Have a look at his performance of '21'.

Another performance with one of the artists from Forestside Artist Development Programme and the 'all star band' to follow shortly


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