Musician and entrepreneur James Higgins will perform and teach at Ukitopia festival.
Musician and entrepreneur James Higgins will perform and teach at Ukitopia festival. Blainey Woodham

Staging a Ukitopia workshop

TUMBULGUM-based musician James Higgins will offer his wealth of music knowledge at the Ukitopia arts and cultural festival next weekend.

The 23-year-old said he planned to perform at the festival and run a free workshop with local artists on Saturday, November 14.

“We will be running a song-writing workshop and setting up a recording studio on stage,” Mr Higgins said.

He said the workshop would run for an hour and participants would write a song, record it, listen to it and then discuss it with musicians on stage.

“We hope to make it as interactive as possible.”

Mr Higgins grew up in Uki before moving to the Gold Coast to study at Griffith University.

“I have always been interested in music, and when I was 13 I started writing songs and decided on my career,” Mr Higgins said.

He settled in Tumbulgum after touring through Europe with his band Soul Continuum and now runs his own business, J.Fox Soul, from home.

Mr Higgins said there were three facets to his business – music production, performing and mentoring.

“I mentor people any age wanting to get into music,” Mr Higgins said. “It is a niche market because there are a lot of schools that teach music but no business to actually mentor.”

Ukitopia Arts Collective president Natascha Wernick said a bigger festival was planned this year after the success of the first Ukitopia festival.

She said the arts collective was founded in 2008 to support the Uki district’s creative industry.

“It is a celebration of Uki life, arts and culture and is targeted at Uki and district residents.”

The Ukitopia Festival will run on November, 14-15. For more information contact Natascha Wernick (02) 6679 5677 or visit www.myspace.com.au/ukitopiaartscollective.



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