New music night at Rutland County Museum is going to be massive!

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YOUNG budding musicians have the chance to take centre stage at a new music night at Rutland County Museum.

Artists will be able to promote their gigs, sell tickets, and play their music to large audiences at the venue, in Catmose Street, Oakham.

The night, titled Rocket Sixteen, has been organised by musician Paul McClure, who said youngsters now have a brand new place to show off their talents and get noticed.

The first gig is set to take place on February 10 at 6.30pm.

Paul said: “This new event will give kids an opportunity to just get out and play their stuff.

“There’s nothing much available for teenagers to do in the evenings and not a great deal of opportunities for young bands to play live, so this night is going to be a great place for them to go out and have a great time.

“We’ve had so much interest from kids and parents already - it’s going to be massive.”

Paul, 40, who lives in Oakham, has performed in bands all his life and has taught children to play musical instruments in schools for the past 10 years.

He currently plays guitar in an Americana folk band called The Hi and Lo.

Paul added: “When I was a kid, there was nowhere to play so that’s why I was keen to organise this event. There’s a massive gap in the area for people looking to play.

“And with the way the music industry is at the moment, it is hard for young musicians to get noticed.

“No one is pushing these bands so hopefully this night will give them an opportunity to get noticed.

“It’s now all over to the kids. It’s up to them to make the bookings, do their promotions and sell tickets.

“The more they put in, the more they’ll get out of it.”

The young artists must be under the age of 19 and will paid based on the number of tickets they sell.

The events will be the museum’s first concerts held for teenagers only.

As well as the bands, the nights will also include DJs, a pick and mix stand, and a ‘mocktail’ bar, selling non-alcoholic drinks.

Four local artists have already been booked for the first night on February 10, and Paul is hoping to take more bookings for later dates.

Events are set to be held every six weeks at the museum.

The gigs are set to run from 6.30pm to 9pm. Tickets are £6.

For more information about Rocket Sixteen, visit www.rutland.gov.uk/live@themuseum or pick up a live@themuseum events guide.

For tickets, call the Rutland County Museum’s box office on 01572 720 922.

To enquire about making a booking, e-mail Paul McClure at rocketsixteen@hotmail.co.uk.