Live music at the castle

The Shapes performing on stage inside Castle Rushen grounds last year

The Shapes performing on stage inside Castle Rushen grounds last year

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Young people are set to showcase their musical talents with two nights of music at Castle Rushen.

Live at The Castle will feature young people, ranging in age from 13-years to 18-year-olds, who have been involved with the Department of Education and Children’s youth project Soundcheck.

Soundcheck is an island-wide music project that gives young people the chance to develop their musical ability and to have an outlet for their music.

The concerts at the castle take place Saturday and Sunday July 5 and 6, from 6pm until 11pm.

‘What we have tried to do is get a good mix. Most or all of the bands have got some sort of contact with Soundcheck,’ said youth officer Dave Hattersley.

There will be a mixture of electric and acoustic acts each night.

The line ups are:

Saturday, Callum Fellumeri, Marc McCabe O’Kelly, Azariah Sheeley, Zac Phillips, Alice Dudley, Brainstorm, Mimic The Creation, Roc Vannin, Bar Toads, Dusty Plankton, and Full Moon Fallout (the latter is the Soundcheck staff band).

Sunday, Emily Devereau, Charli Prior, Tender Rage, Chris Gray, Naked, Fletcher Christian Mutiny, Dan Buttimore, The Same (tbc), Joey Wylde, and Redshift.

Some of these young people are shortly to start college courses to study music. Azariah and Zac are both preparing to go off to study at Brighton Music College, while Emily is to attend a music college in Liverpool.

In addition, the sound and lighting will be provided by former Soundcheck attendees, who are now in higher education studying sound and lighting: Josh Clague, who is at Liverpool Institute For Performing Arts, and Joe Callister, who is at the University of Derby.

Soundcheck started nearly 20 years ago, but in the last four years the project has ‘exploded’, said Dave who puts it down to the input of the staff running the project.

For the past six years Soundcheck has been an island-wide project with centres having been established at the DEC’s youth clubs in Castletown, Ramsey and Peel. The Ramsey project alone now attracts 20 young people each week.

During there weekly sessions, held during term time, young people can go along and use the music equipment.

The main base for the Soundcheck project is the Youth Arts Centre in Kensington Road, Douglas, where there is more space, music equipment as well as a recording studio.

On Mondays and Tuesdays young people can attend the centre to rehearse and numbers attending each week range between 15 and 45. On Thursdays young people can book in to use the recording studio.

‘On average over the course of a week we’re seeing 100 young people across all the centres,’ said Dave.

Soundcheck achieved charitable status in April. The charity’s patron is Lieutenant Governor Adam Wood.

The governor has been particularly impressed by the acoustic acts coming out of Soundcheck and believes there is ‘some fantastic talent’, said Dave, who readily agrees.

Sadly, there is not enough appreciation among adults for the talent young people have got, he said, however he knows from the project that this island has very talented young musicians who are writing and performing their own work.

The music nights at the castle follow on from a successful first Soundcheck gig at the castle last summer.


Live at The Castle is being held with support from the Isle of Man Arts Council as part of the 2014 Island of Culture – a year-long celebration of the island’s talent and creativity, led by the Arts Council.

Tickets are available from Castle Rushen in Castletown or the Manx Museum in Douglas. Night – ticket: £5 adults, £3 students. Weekend – ticket: £8 adults, £4.80 students.

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