What’s it like to be a Festival Manager?
Michael Gee is the Festival Manager for Oxjam Sowerby Bridge. After running an amazing Oxjam last year, he is doing it again in 2019. I asked Michael 3 questions about what it’s like to be a Festival Manager.
What’s rewarding about being a festival manager?
None of this happens without you and your crazy idea to go for it! We’ve all got our own ideas on how we can make Oxjam a success but it’s down to you to make yours happen. The sense of accomplishment from seeing your events come to life, with all your artists performing and your volunteers making your plan come together is amazing. You really will be working with people from all walks of life to achieve some real good for your local music scene, your community and the world. It’s not every day you get to say that!
What skills did you learn from being a festival manager?
Wow, so many! You deal with such an array of different scenarios you’re always learning and developing skills. I could list all the usual suspects – project management, event planning and team communication. More importantly though you fast get used to putting yourself out there and selling your vision to people. That’s something you’ll really find useful wherever you go after this. Don’t worry about not having all the skills, honestly identify what you can bring to the table then you can find others to help fill in the blanks.
How does Oxjam support grassroots music and your local community?
One of my favourite aspects of being a festival manager is discovering new talent and getting to shine a spotlight on it. Oxjam is a massive platform able to remove barriers and open doors on those crucial music industry rungs for upcoming talent, both on and behind the stage. We attract a lot of media attention all throughout the campaign and push out our artists at every available opportunity. There’s some serious promotion goes into this! All over the country we’re working with music venues, community groups, radio stations, newspapers, magazines, a lot of local businesses, promoters, musicians and don’t forget the techs. Everyone benefits in some way and we get to raise money for a great charity at the same time.