Sample the music industry

After an inspirational bank holiday weekend of live performances, Liverpool International Music Festival (LIMF) is looking to inspire the next generation.

Steve Levine
Steve Levine will take part in the academy

On Sunday 22 September the Virgin Trains LIMF Academy will roll into the city bringing with it music industry expertise in the form of BBC Radio1 DJ Dev (who wowed the crowds on Bank Holiday Monday in Sefton Park) and Grammy award winning music producer Steve Levine.

The Academy is open to 9-25 year olds who want to learn more about the industry, develop their skills and look at ways in which to kick-start their career.

The day will feature:

  • Have a Go workshops which include drumming, singing, dancing, rapping, song writing and DJing.
  • Get to Know panels focusing on different strands of the music and entertainment scene which will be hosted by industry experts.
  • Deconstructed – a unique ‘in conversation’ opportunity with Steve Levine.

The academy will end on a high with performances from some of Liverpool’s home-grown talent including Mic Lowry, Tyler Mensah, Valentine Brothers and Taylor Fowlis.

Steve Levine said: “I’m honoured to have been asked to present the keynote address at the inaugural Virgin Trains sponsored Academy.

“Liverpool has historically punched above its weight around the world in terms of creative musical talent, both in front and behind the mixing desk. However for many years some of this area’s younger creative individuals have not always had the breaks they deserve.

“With a corporate sponsorship underpinning this new initiative, hopefully we can change the future for these bright individuals and get them well-paid jobs in the best business in the world – the music business!”

Dev said: “I’m really pleased to be part of an event that encourages young people to think seriously about a future in the music industry.

“It’s always helpful to get advice, tips and guidance from people who are in the industry and if we can help inspire the next generation, then that’s something I’m really proud of.”

This is a ticketed event and booking is essential – tickets are free and can be booked by visiting  Please note, under 16s must be accompanied by an adult.

LIMF’s Music Curator, Yaw Owusu, said: “From the outset, we wanted an event that not only celebrated amazing live music, but we also wanted to give young people the opportunity to find out how to get their foot in the door of the music industry.

“To have the likes of Steve Levine and Dev on-board gives the academy added credibility, and it’s the perfect chance for those taking part to pick the brains of those who live and breathe the industry.”

Graham Leech, Commercial Executive Director for Virgin Trains, said: “Liverpool is a thriving city with a rich cultural heritage.

“We’re thrilled to be able to support this festival, which is bursting with world-renowned headline acts and will showcase the best that the city has to offer.

“Virgin Trains already provides frequent, fast services to Liverpool with a journey time of just over two hours, so it’s entirely fitting that we act as travel partner to the Liverpool International Music Festival.

“As sponsor of the LIMF Academy we want to play a key role in ensuring that future generations benefit from the musical legacy that Liverpool has developed.”

Steve Levine:

Grammy and BRIT Award winner Steve Levine produced The Beach Boys’ 1985 self-titled album – the first to be recorded following the death of founder member Dennis Wilson.  He also produced all of Culture Club’s classic hits and their three multi-platinum selling albums.

His resume also included working with acts such as Lemmy & Motorhead, The Clash, Liverpool band China Crisis, Mis-teeq and Ziggy Marley.

Steve won his BRIT Award in 1984 for Best British Producer and the Grammy was awarded for his work with multi-award winning Deniece Williams.


LIMF celebrates greatness, discovers the new and inspires the next. One city, 35 days, more than 250 performances.

The live music kicked off during bank holiday weekend from 23 to 26 August, with nearly 200,000 people making the most of the amazing live music on offer.

Acts took to a new stage in Sefton Park including internationally acclaimed Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra and chief conductor Vasily Petrenko, Soul II Soul, Rebecca Ferguson, Ghetto Youths International Crew (featuring Damian Marley) and The Christians as well as some of the leading stars from the world of reggae, jazz, folk and African.

On Saturday 24 August, the Pier Head played host to the Turn Up the Radio event with headliners JLS being joined by acts including Little Mix, Union J, Stooshe, The Vamps and Eliza Doolittle.

On Sunday 25 August Party at the Pier saw the Juice FM stage play host to well-known artists including The Saturdays, Texas and Nina Nesbitt. They performed alongside local stars including KOF, Esco Williams, The Hummingbirds and Chelcee Grimes.   The Mathew Street Festival Stage with Real Radio (programmed by Bill Heckle and Dave Jones from Cavern City Tours) saw acts paying homage to artists such as Queen, Adele, Robbie Williams and The Rolling Stones.

The live music continues with a very special performance from legendary band The Farm on Sunday 8 September in Stanley Park. It is free to attend and no tickets are necessary.

Liverpool Waterfront