Pop legend Mark Owen has wowed fans at an exclusive intimate gig at Newcastle College, which also saw him supported by two of the college’s most promising musical talents.
The gig, which was in association with Real Radio, followed an extensive European tour by the Take That band member as he re-embarks on his solo career and saw him play songs from his new album The Art of Doing Nothing, as well as a number of Take That classics, including The Flood, Hold Up a Light and Shine.
The gig, which was held at the college’s Performance Academy, was the only date scheduled for the North East and follows a series of high profile performances at the college, including those by JLS, local indie rockers Maximo Park and boy band favourites Lawson.
Supporting Mark was Newcastle College students Rebecca Ampleford, 18, and Shane Nickerson, 17, who have both just completed a Level 3 Extended Diploma in Music and have been making waves in the local music scene after impressing judges at the college’s Trackfactor artists and repertoire (A&R) competition in March.
Rebecca and Shane, who played a number of original songs in their support slot, have already played together at gigs across the region, including performances at The Cluny in Newcastle.
Rebecca, who lives in Forest Hall, North Tyneside, said: “I couldn’t believe it when I heard that I would be supporting Mark Owen and nor could my parents who were absolutely gobsmacked. It was a fantastic opportunity for both me and Shane to play on the same bill as one of the country’s most well-known musicians and to get a chance to play for such a fantastic audience.”
Shane, who lives in Westerhope in Newcastle, said: “It’s was an absolute privilege to get the opportunity to do this gig. I was absolutely blown away when I found out that we had been chosen and knew we had to go out there and give it our best shot. The fact that we have supported someone as huge as Mark Owen will definitely help our CVs.”
Arron Walton, Lecturer in Music Performance at Newcastle College’s School of Creative Industries, said: “Rebecca and Shane have really impressed us with their song writing ability and musical styles. Supporting such a well-known performer as Mark Owen was an amazing experience for them and will go a long way in helping them develop as original artists in their own right.”