Three acts from Royal Holloway are amongst the 59 from 21 London Higher Education institutions battling for the first Uni Music League prize. Jess Kinney, Elena Mowgli and Third Conduct will initially compete against each for the chance to represent Royal Holloway in this music competition. Only one will go through to the second league stage with a chance of performing at the ULU venue in Bloomsbury London. The winner of each league will compete in a final concert to win the main prize of recording a 3-track EP with Florence + the Machine and Kaiser Chief producer, Charlie Hugall.
Singer Songwriter Elena Mowgli (real name Elena Barnard) is a first year Italian and Spanish student who sings to an acoustic guitar accompaniment. She says “Having had my heart kicked about I wrote lots of songs about heartbreak and what it’s like to live in my brain… Now I’m happy I write slightly happier songs” (It’s not clear to which category the song on the Uni music league website belongs). Elena’s been writing songs since the age of eleven and performing around Egham for the last year. This is her first music competition.
Music undergrad Jess Kinney is another singer songwriter, with a piano accompanying her soprano voice (or is it alto? Jess would know). “I like to try my hand at all sorts of music,” says Jess. “From rock to baroque. I write my own songs as well as doing various covers.”
York rock band, Third Conduct, consists of third year Psychology undergraduate Sarah Feehan (bass, keys, lead vocals) and her two sisters, Hannah (guitar, vocals) and Kate (drums. vocals). They’ve been a band since 2003, have done well in a number of other music competitions, gig regularly and supported the Wombats in 2007.
The Uni Music League was started by recent graduates Karol Severin and Daniel Zawadzki of Fatter Lane Productions, in partnership with ULU, to give musicians studying at university an opportunity to break through with their original music. “Our aim is to support healthy competition between universities in areas other than academics or sport. We also want to encourage universities to support their student talent to bring out their best in music.”
The contest consists of three rounds. The, first, local round from now until December, will involve Jess, Elena and Third Conduct competing against each other with original songs (covering songs by other artists is banned). You can listen to one of their tracks online and will soon be able to vote for the act that should represent the university at the League stage either online or at a special gig to be organised by SURHUL.
The League stage, from January to April, will feature only on Royal Holloway act in a league with other universities and compete against each other at the ULU venue. The winner of each league is decided through public online voting.
The final takes place later in 2012 and is again decided by a public vote at www.unimusiccontest.com.