The Unsigned 2022

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The Garage in Norwich has opened its applications for the next intake of students for The Unsigned Programme. This programme will help bands or solo artists aged 16-25 to develop their musicianship, performance skills and identity. The programme includes public performance opportunities, one to one rehearsal sessions, individual/band feedback, an opportunity to record demos, marketing and promotion sessions and more.

There are currently four distinctive artists on board for this year’s Unsigned programme where they get expert mentoring, studio time and a photoshoot, culminating in a gig at The Waterfront, Norwich on Sunday 10th July. Buy tickets here.

Let’s find out more about them:

Maple Ward
Links: Insta / Facebook

Maple s a 22-year-old Based in Norwich, her influences include Phoebe Bridges and Adrienne Lenker. She describes her music as a blend of acoustic pop and folk.

Q: Tell me about your song-writing process.
A: Most of the time I feel like it takes a lot of crafting to piece my songs together. I use my phone to take voice notes. I tend to find it easier to write when I’ve been consistently adding it into my daily routine, rather than stopping for days at a time. When I have a concept for a song, I like to mind map my ideas on paper. It can get messy and disorganised. But I like looking back at the scribbles to see how my ideas developed into lyrics.

Q: Where does your passion for music come from?
A: I have always loved singing. Like many people, listening to music helped me through difficult times. My passion grew as it became a cathartic means for processing my emotions.

Q: Was there a specific moment in your life when you knew you wanted a career in music?
A: I was not long home from travelling around Asia when lockdown hit. Thinking a lot about life in general while backpacking heightened my desire to pursue music and time spent in lockdown perpetuated this.

Lockdown forced us all to stop really. It gave us time to re-evaluate. For me then it came down to the old cliché – I didn’t want to let fear or lack of confidence stop me from doing what I really loved. I felt strongly that I didn’t want to get older and have regrets of not giving it a go. This was a time that I can remember feeling a real drive to get myself out there musically.

Q: How does performing make you feel?
A: This one is quite hard to describe! I’m quite a shy and introverted person, especially around new people. As soon as I step on stage it’s like I go into my own world. The main thing I get from the process is the raw interaction with an audience. My songs often come from a place of struggle. They are very open and honest. When my lyrics engage or connect with someone, I really treasure that. It’s a really special thing, and it fuels my enthusiasm to continue writing and performing.

Q: What’s next for you?
A: I’m planning to release my first song on all streaming platforms. I hope to gig more off the back of this. I also an unconditional offer to do a music performance degree which starts in September.


Links: Insta

Juliet moved to the north Norfolk coast when she was 10, she’s currently in her last year of her Level Three Vocal Artist course at Access Creative College in Norwich.

Q: How do you describe your music?
A: I mostly go under the umbrella of RnB but love to bring elements of rap/spoken word, hip hop, soul and pop. My main influences at the moment are Mae MullerOlivia DeanJorja Smith and Little Simz. They show there are no limits or boundaries to who you can be. I aspire to be as strong a role model as I grow.

Q: Where does your passion for music come from?
A: Music has always been a massive part of my family, even though none of them are in the industry. Every style of music was always around me growing up, so I have grown to have an eclectic taste in styles and I appreciate most music.

Q: How does performing make you feel?
A: It’s indescribable. It’s unreal and I can’t get enough of it. I usually feel almost unwell before performing. My heart is beating incredibly fast, my hands are clammy and I can usually be found racing through my set one more time before I head out onto the stage. When I step out, I feel my body go cold with excitement and I suddenly feel filled with adrenaline. Any feeling of nausea is gone and I feel so happy and at home.

Q: Why did you sign up to Unsigned?
A: I decided to take part because I already knew who I was and had a good sense of my image and style of music. But I needed direction to help me make my music “brandable” and to further develop my performance and writing skills.

Q: What’s Next?
A: I am working towards my debut single and EP releases this year. In September I am continuing on at Access Creative College, studying Level Four Artist Development where I will continue to develop my brand. I am looking forward to gigging and festivals in summer.


Links: Insta

This busy 19-year-old from Dickleburgh is juggling the programme with her Open University studies, working full-time as a teacher’s assistant and running her own small business.

Q: Tell me more about your music
A: My sound is very experimental with a lot of different influences citing Amy Winehouse and Dirty Dike to Biggie Smalls and Mac Miller. I’m currently working on some new music  influenced by the free party scene. I’d say my music is hip-hop/ jazz.

Q: Tell me about your songwriting process
A: I’ve always written and always thought my lyricism is my strong suit. I don’t really have a process I just whack a beat on and it just kind of spews out.

Q: Where does your passion for music come from?
A: I didn’t come from a musical background. I never studied music or anything like that as I was quite a troubled kid. But that’s a story for another time. I was always singing 24/7. Apparently, I would sing in my sleep. my little sister got a pink microphone for her fourth birthday, and I would put on gigs in the front room for my mum. Since that day it just stuck.

Q: What are you looking forward to the most?
A: The studio time. I think it’s a great opportunity to work with others and obviously get the guidance from the mentors.

Q: What’s next after Unsigned?
A: My plan is to just keep writing, keep making music and hopefully get some more gigs. I’ve got two EPs in the works currently and a few singles!


Kyle Adams, AKA The Marijanovic
Links: Insta

Originally from Portsmouth but now living in Norwich, the 17-year-old is studying working as a women and men’s artistic gymnastics coach

Q: Tell me about your music
A: I find it hard putting a label on my music or what genre it fits in. Some would say 80s goth pop and others more pop punk. It’s definitely rock music but it’s hard to put it into a select genre which is what makes it so interesting. My inspirations come from all different places. My two biggest inspirations are Placebo and Waterparks.

Q: Tell me about your songwriting process
A: At the minute I try to write a song each week to prevent writer’s block. This doesn’t mean they are good. It could be a 30 second jazz intro, but as long as I’ve done something I’m content.

Q: Was there a specific moment when you knew you wanted a career in music?
A: I’ve always wanted it. I physically can’t imagine myself doing anything else. I recall watching reruns of My Chemical Romance’ s performance at Leeds Festival in 2011 and wanting to be standing right where they were.

Q: What’s next after Unsigned?
A: By summer I’m hoping to release my debut EP along with many shows and release parties!


More about the Unsigned Programme:

Gabby Meadows is one of The Garage’s participation programme managers, “Unsigned is a pre-professional mentoring programme for young artists. It gives participants the space to further hone their music and begin creating their brand, before launching into their chosen career path”.

She continues “Unsigned is just one strand of our Musical Journey’s project, which helps young people across Norfolk hone their skills and build their confidence. It was made possible by a grant from Youth Music using public funding from the National Lottery through Arts Council England. That funding supports our music programme at every level”.

Spaces are limited, the programme is free to attend and participation is by selection only.

They are now accepting applications for September. To be considered please send links to your music, any performance footage, a bit about yourself and why you’d like to take part to


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