Adele producer Paul Epworth: “Poor kids without industry links have no hope of fulfilling their dreams of a job in music”

Epworth is backing theWRD, a new Creative Entrepreneurship diploma by the Ivors Academy that will offer bursaries to underprivileged youths.

Paul Epworth

Image: MusicTech, Joseph Branston

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Producer Paul Epworth fears the UK will miss out on its next “Paul McCartney or David Bowie” as youngsters without financial support nor existing ties to the industry have “no hope” of getting a job in music.

Epworth spoke to The Telegraph yesterday (24 May) about theWRD, a new two-year Creative Entrepreneurship diploma offered at the Ivors Academy, that he is backing.

The producer opined that underprivileged young musicians who don’t already have links to the music industry are likely to be excluded from a career path in music.

“Because of cuts in funding, youth club closures, venues closing and growing hardship it’s getting harder and harder to get into the creative industries unless you already know somebody who can advise you or offer you an internship,” Epworth said.

“If you’re a kid from an underprivileged background without those links you’ve got no hope of fulfilling your dreams of a job in music.”

The Ivors Academy’s new diploma programme aims to counter this with bursaries for students from underprivileged backgrounds, so they may study aspects of the creative industry from live music and personal development to technology and branding.

Epworth, a seven-time Grammy winner whose credits span Adele to Florence And The Machine, and picked up an Academy Award in 2013 for Skyfall, will be a tutor and mentor on the diploma.

“Without this we risk losing another Paul McCartney or David Bowie and their massive contribution to British and world culture,” Epworth said of the programme.

Graham Davies, CEO of The Ivors Academy, added: “Many young people can’t access state-funded arts education, careers in the creative industries or a creative life. We believe that everyone, everywhere with the desire and talent should have the chance to start and establish a career in music.

“It is essential that we create new opportunities to support the next generation of music industry professionals and music creators.”

Learn more about the programme and its bursaries at


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