Jubacana is a young people-led music and performance outfit, which takes inspiration from the rhythms of Brazil, Africa and South-Asia, but with a UK twist.
Now, thanks to a £25,000 grant from Youth Music, the project will be able to involve even more youngsters. Plans are already afoot to put on a number of performances in Oldham and beyond, to work with international artists and even to make a professional recording of their unique global sound.
Established in Manchester in 2014, Jubacana made the move to Oldham last year. The group has already played at high profile events including RHS Tatton Flower Show, Manchester Day, Liverpool and Manchester Pride, Festival Oldham and the Celebrate Festival.
Holly Prest, who grew up in Greenfield, is director of Jubacana. She said: “I took part in out-of-school music activities all through my teenage years and it has made me who I am. I made friends for life from communities I otherwise wouldn’t have mixed with, grew in confidence and eventually learned the leadership skills to run projects of my own.
“Jubacana is about sharing and taking pleasure in dancing and making music as a group. It is also very much about giving every member memorable experiences and life skills.
“This grant will enable us to expand our reach throughout Oldham, mentoring young musicians and future leaders to help give them the best possible chance in life. We are seeking young people with no experience to learn brand new skills, as well as those with experience of South Asian percussion instrument playing.”
18-year-old Shariq Ali Ashraf, (Pictured above) an A-Level student from Chadderton, has been performing with the group for two years. He said: “Jubacana is different to everything else I’ve ever done.
“It gives me loads of creative freedom and has introduced me to lots of new musical styles – both through the music we play together and sharing music with new friends I have made.
“I would recommend it to everyone. You don’t need to be able to play an instrument, just to have a love of music and to want to do something different”.
From this month, the group will be running taster workshops in schools and youth groups around Oldham. There will be a summer school in August and partnership plan is already in place with a young people’s percussion groups from Glasgow and Brazil. A programme of guest tutors has been put together, to bring additional skills and experience to the group.
Young people aged 8-18 are invited to join Jubacana. No experience is necessary and you don’t have to have your own instrument. The group is also looking for singers, songwriters, other instrumentalists and dancers of every kind.
They meet every Friday from 6-7.30pm at The Old Museum on Greaves Street.
For more information, you can contact firstname.lastname@example.org or visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/WeAreJubacana.