A new music award has been launched by Severn Arts in partnership with BIMM Institute Birmingham in memory of local musician Olly Irwin who sadly passed away in Worcester in 2021. 

The Olly Irwin Award is in memory of Olly, a brilliant young musician, bass player and sound engineer who was a much-loved member of the Worcestershire music scene. Using funds raised by Olly’s family and friends the Award will give the recipient six online mentoring sessions with a music technology expert from BIMM Institute plus £500 to spend on equipment or activity to develop the individual’s musical journey. 

Sue Irwin, Olly’s mum said: "Olly was passionate about music. He played in the school band ‘New Generation’ and a local group ‘The Blue Dive’ from just 13 years old, studied music production at college and at 16 started the first of many music technology and sound engineering jobs. He also played in or had connections with numerous other musicians and bands, including The Connor Mayer Quartet, Matt & The Boyz, and Phil Wilkins and the Capas band. 

"We are really pleased that the generous donations we received through Ollyfest last year will directly help a young musician to develop and grow their skills and passion and hopefully become a great musician, just like Olly. It is a cause so close to Olly’s heart and a fitting tribute."

Laura Worsfold, CEO, Severn Arts said: "We are so grateful to Sue and all of Olly’s friends and family who have made this happen through their incredible generosity. It is a unique opportunity for a young budding musician to kickstart their career, working with a professional and ourselves, to create something special. Severn Arts is all about enabling young creatives to access opportunities to develop their skills and engage in artistic endeavour that brings joy and inspires confidence. I look forward to meeting the first recipient." 

The Olly Irwin Award is open to anyone aged 15 – 17 years with an interest in music technology, DJ-ing and music recording who is looking for an opportunity to develop their skills in music production and music technology. To apply applicants need to complete an online form outlining why they should receive the award and how it will influence them in their future musical journey. For more information visit https://severnarts.org.uk/olly-irwin-award. The closing date for applications is Friday 7 July 2023.