On Wednesday 20 October, music creators and industry guests came together for the first live in-person PRS Presents gig since the COVID-19 pandemic struck in March 2020.
Hosted by PRS for Music and PRS Foundation, attendees were welcomed to The Forge Bar, a short walk away from PRS for Music’s new collaboration hub in London Bridge, for an eclectic evening of music featuring avant-punk queen, Nuha Ruby Ra, soul and R&B singer, Joel Culpepper, and multi-award-winning saxophonist and composer, Nubya Garcia.
All three acts that performed on the night have received funding from PRS Foundation to help accelerate their careers. Nuha Ruby Ra was a recipient of the Open Fund for music creators earlier this year, and Joel Culpepper has received support via the PPL Momentum Fund. Nubya Garcia was granted the Steve Reid Innovation Award in 2017, alongside performing at the BBC Music Introducing x PRS Foundation showcase for New York Winter Jazzfest 2018 and receiving both the PPL Momentum Music Fund in 2018 for the recording of Mercury Prize nominated album Source, and International Showcase Fund for SXSW 2018.
PRS for Music, which represents more than 155,000 songwriters, composers, and music publishers in the UK and across the globe, began hosting PRS Presents in 2015 to showcase the wealth of talent represented by the organisation. Artists that have previously performed include Flohio, Ghostpoet, Greentea Peng, Idles, Moses Boyd and Rag ‘n’ Bone Man. During lockdown, PRS for Music hosted online editions of the PRS Presents series, including PRS Presents LCKDWN, a 24-hour virtual gig in aid of the PRS Emergency Relief Fund supporting music creators facing significant financial hardship due to the pandemic, PRS Presents LGBTQ+, and PRS Presents Black History Month.
Michelle Escoffery, president, PRS Members’ Council, said: ‘What a night of outstanding live music! Heartfelt thanks to everyone who came out to this special edition of PRS Presents, members and industry guests alike. Not only did it provide us with an opportunity to reconnect with those we have missed and establish new connections, it was a compelling reminder of live music’s true power and the UK’s thriving, diverse music scene. We would like to thank Nuha Ruby Ra, Joel Culpepper and Nubya Garcia for their incredible performances, and look forward to our next PRS Presents.’