Project title: Unearth Productions
Participatory Budgeting funding request: $6500
Organization/Individual: Fairfield Gonzales Community Association
Location: Various all-ages, drug-and-alcohol free, inclusive spaces in Victoria
What is your project?
In 2005, I accidentally started a music festival. At 17, I looked to simply have a backyard birthday party where my friends and I could perform music and celebrate my 18th birthday. I named it ‘Adstock ‘05’ as a joke and now, Adstock has grown into a free, non-profit, music festival that encourages local youth to get involved in music. We- at the Adstock Maple Ridge Society- do this both by reserving youth band slots in our lineup as well as volunteer opportunities within our organization. Our 15th annual event is slated for July 7th, 2019.
Now that I live in James Bay and am the youth programs manager with The Fairfield Gonzales Community Association, I aim to bring a similar approach to Victoria’s all-ages youth music scene. Instead of a single annual event, I, and the FGCA, propose an ongoing concert series that will provide opportunities to young bands all over Greater Victoria to perform in prestigious all-ages concerts. I would love to see some continuum for this project in having local bands graduate up to more established acts that, in turn, help support the next wave of local youth musicians find their voice.
How does your project benefit the lives of youth in Victoria?
All young people that fall in love with making music will have their hearts set on live performance. Getting a solo act or band off the ground will never be easy, but it is nearly impossible if there are no opportunities to perform. Without them, it is like practicing a team sport indefinitely without a competitive game in sight.
Getting involved in music has a myriad of benefits such as creative expression, physical mastery, and effective productivity to name a few. Building a musical project from the ground up is a great opportunity for self-empowerment as well. As much as our organization and the established headlining bands will offer some mentorship, the youth themselves will be leading their own projects. Providing a bright beacon for them to work towards will ensure that this incredible endeavour will be fuelled for a tangible payoff.