Nebula Music Festival 2020 goes online!

University of Lincoln Music Students organise an online music festival

Every year, third year music students at University of Lincoln organise Nebula Music Festival on the first bank holiday weekend of May. Usually held at LPAC, the students work all year to book music and musicians from across Lincolnshire, budget, fundraise and market the event.

This year, their contingency planning was robust: rain, fire, cancellations and no audience were all taken into account, addressed with solid risk assessments and strong marketing strategies. The plan did not, however, anticipate a global pandemic. Early March the 15-strong team took the rapidly evolving events in their stride, and was very quick to adapt. They decided to take the entire event online, streaming a full programme of music and talks on Saturday 2 May.

Jessica Tye-Leach, who will be graduating in September, says that “adapting to our new circumstances has been a challenge but as a team we have created an evolved Nebula Festival that will distract our audience from the outside world. I’m so impressed that we have stuck to our original time frame with everyone working so efficiently. We are even showcasing examples of our own degree work, which brings our university experience to a nice close”.

Jess Tye-Leech performs at Nebula Music Festival in 2018 – Photo by S L Hillman Photography and Video

Maintaining their focus on Lincolnshire talent as well as working on the themes of the environment and sustainability, the festival will include five different strands, all streamed simultaneously to increase the festival atmosphere. This includes the following:

  • Live performances by solo artists across the county,
  • Band music videos headlined by Happy Hunting who will participate in a live Q&A focusing on their recent music video releases,
  • Talk series by lecturers and local businesses as well as trivia talks selected through a competition by members of the public (2-5pm)
  • Digital arts and music showcase of UoL student work
  • Online radio soundtrack on mixcloud to get in the Nebula Music Festival Mood

Events will kick off at 2pm and will all be accessible for free through the main website page: Events will go on all afternoon until a 7:30pm close.

The headline act for Nebula Festival 2020 is Happy Hunting.

Josh Holder-Browne, part of the Nebula Festival team and in charge of social media marketing, underlined that “supporting local talent was of particular importance to us all. We agreed as a team that we should show our support through the crisis whether that be through showcasing their work or through asking them to still be involved within the festival”. The students made sure that all live acts would be paid, as they fundraised for artist fees before the lockdown.

Headline act Happy Hunting is “thrilled to have this opportunity to be involved in this online festival in such uncertain times”.

Any remaining fundraised money will be donated to three charities: Comic Relief, Rethink Mental Illness and Nottinghamshire’s Woman Aid.

The general public has the opportunity to participate in Nebula Festival by giving a 5-minute talk on the subject of their choice. These will be organised as a competition, with a £50 prize for the best talk. Full details are available on the

Senior lecturer Dr Cassandre Balosso-Bardin, who has been leading the module since 2017, says: “it is impressive how the students adapted to the new situation so quickly and came up with a new and exciting line-up to present to the world. It really shows their resilience and flexibility as well as how ready they are to enter the professional world. I couldn’t be prouder of them!”

Univerity of Lincoln Year 3 music students welcome you all to join Nebula Festival on 2 May for what is promising to be an afternoon full of creativity.

Nebula Music Festival in 2018 – Photo by Phil Crowe

Happy Hunting music video:

Twitter: @UniLincolnMusic
Twitter: @nebula_festival


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