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Royal Albert Hall extends workshop series with panel event hosted by First Aid Kit’s agent, Natasha Bent

25 July, 2014

Natasha Bent, the booking agent for acclaimed Swedish folk duo First Aid Kit, will host a panel discussion and Q&A for young people aspiring to a career in the music industry, at the Royal Albert Hall in September.

The event on 24 September will complement the band's Albert Session that evening and forms part of the Hall's expansive education programme, giving young people a unique opportunity to get first-hand advice from those in the music business.

Natasha will be joined on stage by the band’s worldwide manager, Laura Haber, as well as their London promoter – Steve Homer of Live Nation – radio plugger Olli Dutton, press agent Nathan Beazer and product manager Alex Eden Smith.

At the event, Natasha will discuss her career and talk to students about an agent's role in creating a campaign around an act, as the other experts contrast this with the roles of management, record labels and promoters, giving the students a unique insight into the industry.

Natasha Bent said: “I am very much looking forward to sharing my knowledge of the industry with the students at such an iconic music venue as the Royal Albert Hall. It is vital to show them that there are other ways to get into the business without becoming the next big artist. Having been in the industry for over 10 years, I know how much I would have benefitted from a workshop like this when starting my career; I think the Hall is doing a great thing and should be celebrated for its efforts within the field of education. ”

Lucy Noble, Head of Programming and Education at the Hall, said: “These initiatives are a key part of our expansive education programme and a great way for young people to gain expertise from high-profile figures in the music business. We believe the panel’s unrivalled expertise will encourage and inspire young people to pursue their ambitions within the industry.”

Natasha has worked in the industry for 10 years and currently represents top acts including First Aid Kit, Foals, Gotye, Foster the People, The Knife and Chvrches. Steve Homer, meanwhile, is Senior Vice President (UK) for Live Nation, has run the Wireless Festival for the past 10 years and works with artists such as Katy Perry, Drake, Beyoncé, Rihanna, Dolly Parton and Gaslight Anthem. Oli Dutton has a similarly eclectic clientele, garnering radio airtime for the likes of Poliça, Field Music, Sebastien Tellier and Hercules & Love Affair through spins, sessions, news pieces and interviews.

The talk, which will also incorporate a Q&A, will take place in the Elgar Room, providing space for around 180 sixth-form and university students from across London.

The Hall's Albert Sessions enable artists who have not previously headlined the Hall to showcase their talent on the main stage.  As with all Albert Sessions, tickets are offered to the public at lower prices; as a charity, the scheme is in line with the Hall’s mission to increase accessibility to the arts. 

The Hall’s education and outreach programme also offers young people in London and beyond the opportunity to learn from and be inspired by the finest music artists on the scene.

Workshops have already seen Emeli Sandé, Foals and classical violinist Nicola Benedetti lead a series of immersive sessions with students from across London.

As well as providing access to breakthrough music artists, the Hall also gives budding music students the opportunity to learn more about the industry in general.  To complement the Foals workshop at the Hall last year, the band’s founder and manager, Peter Mensch, hosted a careers talk giving students a first-hand insight into the world of music business.

The Royal Albert Hall’s education and outreach programme is a central part of its extensive public benefit remit. Based within the iconic venue, it aims to support the cultural life of the country for future generations as part of its obligation to the nation.


Notes to editor:
For more information on the education and outreach programme at the Royal Albert Hall, please contact:
Jacqueline Clifton 020 7861 3134 / 
Rick Burin 020 7959 0531/ 

Royal Albert Hall
The Royal Albert Hall is the world’s most famous stage. Its breathtaking auditorium hosts over 370 shows a year by the world’s greatest artists. The magical atmosphere combined with inspired artists creates legendary events.

Opened in 1871 as part of Prince Albert’s vision for a centre for the Arts and Sciences, the Hall is a registered charity which operates without public funding, remaining true to his founding ambitions within a modern context. Extending the brand with 200 events outside the auditorium, the Hall has broadened its appeal to younger, diverse audiences whilst still engaging its existing customers.

The Hall also offers the Elgar Room, a state-of-the-art small-scale performance space which hosts performances of classical music, jazz and world music, comedy and dance. In the main auditorium, it offers the Albert Sessions, an initiative that encourages up and coming acts to play at the Hall by offering reduced rental fees to promoters and lower ticket prices to encourage younger audiences to visit the Hall. It also works extensively with schools, young people, disadvantaged groups and partners such as Music For Youth through its Education programme, reaching over 100,000 participants each year as part of its extensive public benefit remit. The Hall is also a Strategic and Creative Partner for the Tri-borough Music Service, recognised as one of the country’s leading music education hubs appointed by the Arts Council.

For more information, please visit Registered charity number: 254543

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