After 6,000 applications and more than a few sleepless nights caused by the intense selection process, 60 lucky participants have been chosen to take part in Red Bull Music Academy in Tokyo, Japan, later this year. And it's a wonderfully diverse shortlist to be sure.
The music makers will descend on the Japanese capital between October 12 and November 14 for two fortnight-long terms of workshops, lectures and performances with some of the world's most inspirational creative types.
Among the successful applicants – who this year will represent 34 countries, including Kenya and Egypt for the first time – are the likes of Istanbul experimental/ noise artist İpek Görgün, New York's inventive hip-hop star Zebra Katz, British folk-tinged polymath Laura J. Martin (pictured above), Paris-based singer/ producer Lafawndah, and Tokyo-based krautrock-tinged house producer Sapphire Slows.
“I’m really excited to be invited to RBMA in Tokyo,” says Laura. J Martin. “The opportunity to meet other like-minded musicians while gaining knowledge from world renowned artists is the opportunity of a lifetime.
“I’m looking forward to experimenting with different approaches to making music and learning new techniques. I hope we get to fit some ramen in there too!”
Since the inaugural Academy in Berlin in 1998, Red Bull Music Academy has travelled the world, encouraging interaction and collaboration between musicians. The 2014 event in Tokyo promises to be the biggest event yet as it focuses on the myriad musical styles that make up this vibrant city – from game-soundtrack composers to grand concert halls, and the many small but well-stocked record stores, it's nirvana for audiophiles.
To gear up the lucky participants (and everyone else) for what is sure to be a life-changing experience, Red Bull Music Academy will premiere a new documentary, Layered Memories, in August.
The film follows 2011 Academy graduate Yosi Horikawa as he travels to the UNESCO World Heritage island of Yakushima to record sounds and, later, plays the resulting tracks on speakers he built himself. Check out the trailer for the full-length documentary right here.
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