09 June 2022
Supporting new music and up and coming artists is at the heart of Northampton Music Festival which is set to bring a day of free live music to the town centre on Sunday, 19 June.
The festival will see 61 acts perform across eight locations throughout the town centre, with genres from rock to opera, world music to jazz and more.
Festival Director Graham Roberts said: "I’ve been a part of the music industry for more than 35 years as both a performer, teacher and as director of Northampton Music Festival for the past five year. I’m passionate that new artists should be supported and given professional practice through the experience of taking part in a festival, together with the challenge of playing to a large audience, possibly for the first time.
"Feedback from previous festivals show that this free entry festival is of great benefit to both artists and the general public who may not otherwise be in a position to afford to attend a large live music event.
"The increased footfall has also benefited the town centre, the whole purpose of the festival!"
Kerrie Cosh, Presenter of BBC Music Introducing in Northampton, which was created to support unsigned, undiscovered and under the radar musicians, has worked with the festival to curate part of the line-up of the Main Stage on the Market Square.
Kerrie said: "We are delighted to be working with Northampton Music Festival once again to showcase a wide range of talent from within our county.
"Northampton is a melting pot of diverse and multi-talented artists - and we’re always discovering new musicians we're desperate to share with music lovers.
"We can’t wait to bring that energy to the Market Square stage this year."
Headlining the Main Stage will be Northampton-based band Sarpa Salpa – a band that has been championed by BBC Introducing.
The band first performed at Northampton Music Festival on the BBC Introducing stage in 2018 and, with their current single ‘Dreaming’ receiving critical acclaim, they have now progressed to headlining the entire festival.
Sarpa Salpa frontman Marcus Marooth said: "Having grown up in Northampton, I always used to look out for all the events we could try and get a slot for and festivals were always top of the list!
"There are some fantastic festivals in Northampton that we’ve been lucky enough to play at, and to be invited to headline NMF22 is really great!
"We can’t wait to get out there and give it everything we’ve got!”
New and emerging talent will also be celebrated on the Student Showcase Stage in Element Courtyard on George’s Row with performances from students at Northampton College and the University of Northampton.
Sarah Thursby, Curriculum Manager for Music and Performing Arts at Northampton College, said: "Being part of Northampton Music Festival is an important experience for our students and an insight into life in the music industry and the reality of a large-scale event.
"We go through a rigorous audition process to select the acts who will perform on the day and for many of the students the festival will be their first professional and, importantly, their first paid gig.
"For both Northampton College and the university students, the chance to collaborate and represent the growing talent in our town is essential.
"Supporting the music community, events and profession in Northampton is at the heart of what we do."
Northampton Music Festival takes place from 11.30am until 9pm on Sunday, 19 June, throughout the town centre.