Glastonbury Festival has launched its Emerging Talent Competition 2019, once again generously supported by PRS for Music and PRS Foundation. The free-to-enter contest offers new UK and ROI-based acts of any musical genre the opportunity to compete to play on one of the main stages at this summer’s Festival. The outright winner will also collect a £5,000 Talent Development prize from PRS Foundation to help take their song writing and performing to the next level, while two runners-up will each secure a £2,500 PRS Foundation Talent Development prize.
Entries are open for ONE WEEK ONLY from 9am Monday 28 January until 5pm Monday February 2019 via the Glastonbury website. To take part, acts send in a link to one original song on SoundCloud, plus a link to a video of themselves performing a song live in any context from bedroom to concert hall. Glastonbury co-organiser Emily Eavis commented: “After our year off, we can’t wait to hear the latest crop of undiscovered music that’s out there. New music is hugely important to what this Festival is about, and the Emerging Talent Competition has helped us to unearth so many incredible artists from across the genres. Bring on the entries!”
Recent ETC finalists include Nigerian-born rapper Flohio, who features on the BBC’s Sound of 2019 list, R&B singer Izzy Bizu (a 2016 BRITs Critics’ Choice nominee and winner of the 2016 BBC Music Introducing Award), and singer-songwriter Declan McKenna, who won ETC 2015 subsequently signing with Columbia and releasing a successful debut album. The ETC 2017 winner was soulful singer Josh Barry, who has since toured with Rag’n’Bone Man and Gorgon City and is due to release his first long player this year. Meanwhile, 2016 winners She Drew The Gun have garnered considerable acclaim for their politically-inspired psych-pop, with their latest album Revolution Of The Mind named among BBC 6 Music’s Top 10 albums of 2018.
Once the entries are in, a panel of 30 of the UK’s best music writers including your humble correspondent will help compile a long list of 90 acts. This then will be whittled down to a shortlist of 8 artists by judges including Glastonbury organisers Michael and Emily Eavis. To decide the outright winner, the last eight standing then perform in April at the live finals held at Pilton Working Men’s Club, close to the Worthy Farm festival site.
For the past four competitions, all eight of the finalists were offered slots at that year’s Festival. The message to any aspiring act is clear though; you have to be in it to win it!