Crowdfunding bid to stage jazz festival in Kirkcaldy

Lang Toun jazz festival
Lang Toun jazz festival

A fundraising drive has been launched to bring a jazz festival to Kirkcaldy.

Organisers have set up an online campaign after being knocked back by Creative Scotland.

They want to stage the Lang Toun Jazz Festival for three days in October – and use it as a springboard for future events in 2019.

They aim to fill the gap left by Fife Jazz Festival which hasn’t announced any 2018 event after several years of bringing of big names to the Kingdom. Its headliners have included stars such as Curtis Stigers.

Grace Black, a well known figure on the music scene, believes the three-day festival could plug a gap – if they can generate the vital funding needed.

“The ethos of the festival is to showcase young players, up and coming bands and community bands, as well as one or two established favourites,” she said.

“Fife Jazz Festival didn’t happen this year and we aren’t sure what is happening in 2019, so we decided among ourselves to put on our own event.”

The festival would kick-off in venues in Kirkcaldy but hopefully build to bring live music to its surrounding towns, but everything hinges on support from the community.

It has a venue on board and a number of acts already pencilled in.

“We were told last week that Creative Scotland had so many applications it couldn’t fund us.

“We have launched a crowdfunding page online and while plenty of folk have shared it, not too many have donated so far.

“We are now going to push it and see if we can get the support we need.”

The modest costs involved could easily be raised through crowdfunding, while organisers are also going to try to tap into other sources.

“It is a bit frustrating,” added Grace. “We are keeping costs down.

“We have one venue on board and folk helping out for a very small fee, and we want to keep ticket prices very reasonable too.”

A Creative Scotland spokesman said only a relatively small number of events are able to get funding.

“We receive many more good applications than we have the funds to support through our Open Project Fund as demand is extremely high.

“Open Project Funding, to which Lang Toun Jazz Festival applied, is designed to support individual artists and organisations across Scotland and art-form and demand is extremely high.

“We are currently able to fund around 30 per cent of applications.”

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