Leicester’s ‘musical heroes’ were showcased in a new photographic exhibition a the Bishop Street Methodist Church in Leicester June 21 to July 5.
The photographs - taken by Leicester Lo-Fi’s Stephen Lynch and David Wilson Clarke - aimed to ‘explore issues surrounding diversity and inclusion by looking at the success of artists who have become positive role models for individuals as well as the city as a whole.’
Inspired by black and white images of Leicester citizens displayed in Woodgate, Leicester and funded by Arts Council England, brass band player and community music advocate Julie Hoggarth was able to set up and curate the ‘No Bars Music’ photographic exhibition.
Julie believes that there isn’t enough orchestras, brass band and ensembles to reflect Leicester’s diverse cultures.
“I have seen a huge amount of talent and commitment but as those players grow up - where next?” Julie asks.
“If young players are going to carry on playing to adulthood, or even put in the kind of hours it takes to reach the top, they need role models.
“Think Lewis Hamilton, Marcus Rashford who say I did it, you can too.
“That was the motivation behind the No Bars Music exhibition. The photographs show the young players with whom I work that they are reflected in the adult music world.”
With Leicester Lo Fi’s team being the natural choice of photographers due to their new darkroom being in the basement of the church, photographer David Wilson Clarke says it was a joy to work on the project.
“It was the first photographic project for a long time due to lockdown. It was so interesting to meet so many people from different backgrounds but with a shared passion.”
Stephen Lynch adds that it was a fantastic experience and a pleasure to talk to the musicians.
“Having photographed Leicester musicians for nearly 20 years, it was nice to meet new performers and see familiar faces and talk about bands, gigs, and venues past.”
Two other members of Lo-Fi, Dan and Daryl, chose and printed the final images using their brand new darkroom.
Julie hopes for Leicester develop an inclusive orchestra for everyone.
”Instrumental music should be for everyone. It should be at the heart of every community.”