Councillor Tom Hunt discusses the upcoming MOBOs and the fringe events taking place across Sheffield to celebrate.
Sheffield gears up for MOBO Awards with three days of events
Sheffield will host a series of events to celebrate the MOBO Awards coming to the city for the first time.
MOBO Awards Sheffield – The Fringe, organised by Sheffield City Council in collaboration with MOBO and members of the local community, will take place in the run up to the awards show on 7 February 2024, and will see the city showcase all it has to offer in the way of black music and culture.
On Monday 5th February, some of Sheffield’s best new and emerging talent from across the MOBO genre will be recognised at a talent showcase, held at the Crucible Theatre.
The city will also play host to an industry panel event, with leading players from the UK’s black music scene offering insight to local young talent.
On the day of the awards, there will be a celebration of Sheffield’s black culture in the city’s Winter Garden, with over 25 stalls and music acts helping residents warm up for the main event, the 26th MOBO Awards, which will take place at the Utilita Arena Sheffield.
Local schools will also be getting involved in the action, exploring the impact of black music and culture through a range of educational activities.
Citywide venues and businesses are also being encouraged to host their own MOBO themed events, to welcome the awards show to the city.
Kanya King CBE, Founder and CEO, MOBO Awards, said:
"We are proud to work with Sheffield City Council, local schools, music hubs and youth organisations to unveil MOBO Awards Sheffield – The Fringe; a dynamic series of events poised to transform Sheffield into a vibrant hub of musical innovation and inspiration.
“Our goal with the Fringe is to celebrate black music and culture and work together to ignite creativity in the next generation of talent.
“From workshops in local schools, to a grassroots showcase with an impressive lineup of some of Sheffield's finest black music artists, an esteemed panel of music industry executives sharing insights and experiences, plus a special highlight – a MOBO city takeover at Sheffield's iconic Winter Garden for exciting daytime performances on the day of the awards.
“MOBO Awards Sheffield – The Fringe is more than an event – it's the start of a movement to foster community spirit and shine a spotlight on the rich cultural tapestry of Sheffield."
Councillor Martin Smith, Chair of the Economic Development and Skills Committee at Sheffield City Council, said:
“This is more than just a festival of events, this is a celebration of unity and diversity.
“It will see the city embrace both the beats and flavours of Africa and the Caribbean and is a testament to the power of the music and culture on offer in our city.
“MOBO Awards Sheffield - The Fringe is going to be unforgettable experience for Sheffield and our communities, and I hope everyone is able to get involved and enjoy what’s on offer.”
Showcase – Presented by Pattern and Push x Slambarz
An evening of high-quality music and a celebration of Sheffield’s upcoming artists.
Hosted by Pattern + Push and Slambarz, the showcase will see Sheffield-based artists, DJ sets and local dance groups take to the stage.
An original song, written to celebrate the MOBO Awards in Sheffield, will also be performed.
The Crucible Theatre, Monday 5th February, 7pm – 10.30pm
It's time to MOBOLISE
Upcoming artists and those with a passion for music will hear from the people leading the way in the UK black music scene, at this expert panel event.
The yet to be announced lineup will be giving their insights into the music industry and encouraging young artists to persist with their aspirations. They’ll also be offering their advice on how to develop a career in this challenging yet rewarding sector in 2024.
In association with Sheffield-based artist manager and developer Omar Khan, the event will also see artist performances and special guests.
City Hall, Tuesday 6th February, 6.30pm – 10pm
Sheffield Spotlight in the Winter Garden
Sheffield’s African and Caribbean communities will be showcasing the city’s cultural and artistic talent in the lead up to the main event.
Some of the city’s best black-owned businesses will be sharing a range of products, from jewellery to clothing, and a range of food delicacies.
There will be live performances throughout the day, including a performance of spoken word from Ugandan born and Sheffield-bred, John Rwothomack, as well as singers Josie Wray, Azizajayen and African Drummer, Tongesayi – plus many more.
Sheffield Winter Garden, 7th February 2024, 10am – 4pm
Sheffield Schools Welcome MOBO
Sheffield's schools will also be joining in on the celebration with a range of educational activities that aim to inspire the next generation of musicians and foster an appreciation for diversity and creativity.
Primary and secondary schools citywide have signed up to learn and perform ‘Blinded By Your Grace’ a song from MOBO nominee, Stormzy. The performances will be used to create a short film by The Sheffield Music Hub.
Bespoke workshops are also being put on, by current music artists, to help re-engage young people with education. These awe and wonder sessions will use the power of music to foster a sense of aspiration and achievement.
They’ll be given the opportunity to be mentored by some of the very best professionals from the Sheffield music scene and will be supported to write their own songs and design their own music productions.
For more information about any of the MOBO Awards Sheffield - The Fringe events, please visit the Welcome Sheffield website.
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