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North Shields singer-songwriter wins prestigious Alan Hull Award 2023

Katie Grace wins award

The Community Foundation Tyne & Wear and Northumberland has announced Katie Grace Rushworth from North Shields as the recipient of the prestigious Alan Hull Award 2023.   

The award of £1,000 is made annually to an emerging singer-songwriter or composer based in the North East in memory of Alan Hull, the Newcastle born songwriter and founder member of Lindisfarne, who died in 1995.   

Reacting to the news of her success, Katie said: 

“It’s very meaningful to me as a North East based artist to receive this award. Not only does it feel as if a level of trust has been placed in me and my songwriting, but it also allows me to contribute to a really, really rich musical landscape. 

“I want to play a part in the region’s creative culture and to make my own mark as an independent singer songwriter. To receive this award in the memory of Alan Hull feels like a really nice link between the North East’s music of the past and the region’s music of the future. 

“In the New Year I plan to return to the studio to record my new EP and I’ll be organising my first headline gig in North Tyneside. Thanks to The Alan Hull Award I’m in a great position to get 2023 off to a really positive start.”

Jo Cundall, Senior Advisor, Culture at the Community Foundation who oversees the award said: 

“The fund makes a real difference to the lives of aspiring musicians across the North East. We were delighted by the standard of submissions again this year which clearly demonstrates the depth of talent across the region. 

“Katie Grace, an accomplished guitarist, singer and songwriter, was a worthy winner. Her songs belied her years, showing an appreciation of song structure and the knack of writing a catchy melody!” 

The award is significant for young musicians taking their first steps in the industry and can help with some of the costs they incur along the way. Eve Cole, the 2022 winner of the Alan Hull Award, explained the impact the grant had made: 

“The Alan Hull Award has given me the financial resource to pursue every opportunity I have been presented with this year. I was able to release my first three singles on Spotify and other streaming platforms. Also using my grant, I have recorded 3 original tracks with Harbourmaster, a professional studio in South Shields, and paying band members as session musicians. 

“It has given me the flexibility to book gigs as a solo singer-songwriter, playing keyboard, through to a band set. It also enables me to pay for rehearsal space before gigs”. 

For more information about funding opportunities at the Community Foundation visit www.communityfoundation.org.uk/apply