Sage Gateshead, the arts venue in the North East of England, has selected four artists from over 100 applicants to take up artitic residence for 10 months from September 2020.
The artists – Man Power (Geoff Kirkwood), Me Lost Me (Jayne Dent), Rapasa Otieno and Joe Snape – will have access to funding, investment in a creative project of their choosing, a residential retreat, rehearsal space, one to one advice and support and a concert at Sage Gateshead or virtual event to showcase their project at the end of the residency.
Sage Gateshead’s building is currently closed but the artist development work continues online. The hope is that this year’s residency programme will culminate with a final performance held inside the venue.
Man Power is the alias of Geoff Kirkwood, a North East born music producer specialising in dance music who has spent most of the last decade touring the world’s most well-known clubs and festivals performing as a DJ. His current focus is to use experimental methods as a means of tackling varied concepts which include community, internationalism, privilege, exclusion and the potential barriers he perceives for certain communities to engage in the arts.
Me Lost Me, the electronic music project of Newcastle-based musician Jayne Dent, mixes soaring vocals, synth, field recordings and hypnotic rhythms. Her live shows explore storytelling through original songs, improvisations and reworkings of traditional ballads.
Joe Snape mixes conventional and homemade electronic instruments with light, text and video to make unusual and emotive performances. His work has been presented at places like The Kitchen (New York), Café Oto (London), and Wonder Site (Tokyo), and also at the Elbphilharmonie (Hamburg) and Aldeburgh Music.
Rapasa Otieno (pictured above) is a singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, music educator and contemporary dancer. His debut album Tipona (my shadow), was released earlier in 2020. While playing several instruments indigenous to East Africa, Rapasa’s principal instrument is Nyatiti, originating from the Lüo community who are settled around the shores of Lake Victoria in Kenya.
Rapasa Otieno said:
‘I am excited at the idea of investigating more ways to become independent in my creativity as well as strengthening successful collaborations with local artists.’
Abigail Pogson, Managing Director at Sage Gateshead, said:
‘During these uncertain and complex times, musicians and artists can help us make sense of our world and our reactions to it and explore the future.
‘Many freelance musicians have been hit hard by the financial and practical challenges brought by Covid 19. It has therefore been especially important that we support musicians during this time and continue our artistic development programme right through lockdown.
‘I am delighted that we are now announcing four new Artists in Residence for our 20/21 season. It is fantastic to establish some new creative relationships and look to the future. Welcome Man Power, Me Lost Me, Rapasa Otieno and Joe Snape to Sage Gateshead.’