Sky Academy has announced the recipients to this year’s Sky Academy Arts Scholarship, this week at The South Bank Sky Arts Awards in London. Each of the five recipients will be receiving expert mentorship from industry professionals and £30,000/€40,000 to fund a major new project in the development of their creative practice.
The selection of award recipients demonstrates a twin concern for diversity in opportunities for bright young talent from a variety of backgrounds, as well as diversity in artistic discipline. Previous winner of a Sky Academy Arts Scholarship in 2013, Mark Simpson, won the South Bank Sky Arts Award for Classical Music at the ceremony Sunday; it will be exciting to see the potential this year’s recipients will go on to unlock.
Gearoid O’Dea — Visual Art
Dublin-born visual street artist Gearoid O’Dea will use his scholarship prize to fund his first solo exhibition, The Had, The Have and the Should, featuring a series of works based on his personal experiences with mental health. The exhibition will be produced from documented moments of heightened anxiety, which act as inspiration and catalyst for the content and composition of his finished, large-scale works.
Sarah Grant — Film Production
Scottish animator and filmmaker Sarah Grant will use the scholarship to produce a new combined stop-motion and hand-drawn animated short film, about the relationship between a girl and her books called The Magic Word.
Yinka Ayinde — Creative Production
Creative producer Yinka Ayinde will be funding a multimedia stage adaptation of cult classic nineties TV show, Kenan & Kel, transposed to 21st Century Britain. An integrated app and digital trailer will be produced alongside the play rounding out the project. His previous debut work, an afro-beats musical adaptation Oliver Tweest, was notable for its attendance by first time theatre-goers, encouraging people to engage with the arts.
Jasdeep Singh Degun — Music
Jasdeep Singh Degun, a Sitarist and composer from Leeds will be making use of the mentorship and funding towards towards producing his debut, combining Indian and British influences. He has previously performed as part of ensembles at Buckingham Palace and the Royal Albert Hall.
Caitlin McLeod — Theatre and Comedy
London theatre director Caitlin McLeod, who has worked on productions for the Royal Court, National Theatre and Shakespeare’s Globe, will be founding a new theatre company set up to with a mission towards encouraging and equipping female writers to realise their creative ideas, aptly named The Coterie.