Musical talents in Leeds ‘flash busk’ event

Flash-busking amongst the shoppers on Briggate.
Flash-busking amongst the shoppers on Briggate.
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Shoppers in Leeds were treated to a melodic cacophony of sounds as 100 musicians gathered for a ‘flash busk’.

They took part in what is believed to be the largest ever gathering of buskers performing at the same time in the same city centre location.

Professionals and amateurs aged from 15 to 60 formed a line of buskers the length of Briggate in Leeds city centre.

They played for an hour, using instruments ranging from saxophones to saws.

Musician Charles Hindmarsh, who manages to cover everything from classic songs to folk music on his saws, quipped: “The War-Saw Concerto is my favourite.”

The ‘flash busk’ was part of a programme of arts activities organised by Land Securities to mark the forthcoming Trinity Leeds development, which is due to open in March.

Antonia Stowe, facilitator of the art programme, said afterwards: “We commissioned West Yorkshire community arts organisation Heads Together to bring the buskers together and they did brilliantly.

“It’s been a fabulous success with a wide age range of musicians from different backgrounds coming together to make it happen.”

Among the artists demonstrating their musical skills was Robert ‘Louis’ Lewis, who was playing his 12-string guitar and saxophone.

He said: “I’m glad I came, it’s a great laugh.”

Student Myfanwy Shields, aged 16, played her acoustic guitar and sang.

She said: “This is a really good experience for me, being part of an event with so many different musicians.”

Professional singer and ukulele player Jacqui Wicks gave a tuneful rendition of Jessie J’s song ‘Price Tag’ – an appropriate choice as all the buskers performed for free.

Adrian Sinclair, creative director of Heads Together, said: “The Trinity Leeds commission provided a tremendous opportunity for us to bring some of our creative work into the heart of Leeds.

“Among the people who performed were local professional musicians, as well as young musicians who have been training with us as part of our Next Generation programme and I’d like to thank all of them.”

Heads Together also runs East Leeds FM, which is based in Seacroft, and the ‘flash busk’ was organised in conjunction with the station.

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