#LifeAtBIMM

My First Month at BIMM Birmingham: Izzy Hurlstone

15th November 2017

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Hi Izzy, can you introduce yourself?

Hi, my name is Isabelle, some prefer Izzy. I am a singer-songwriter currently doing a degree in Songwriting at BIMM Birmingham. Making a career in the music industry is my ultimate goal and I can’t wait to see what doors open for me.

How long have you been writing songs?

I’ve been writing songs since I was about 14 but it was only this last year that I realised I could actually do something with them. Hopefully something amazing!

Why did you decide to study at BIMM in Birmingham?

The decision making process this last year has been such a rollercoaster. I had to have so many different options just in case, but after my audition I knew straight away I would be going to BIMM Birmingham. There wasn’t a doubt in my mind and the reason I chose it is because of the opportunities available to me. Being a first year at BIMM Birmingham allows for these crazy connections with other musicians, seeing as there’s only around 95 students total. The closeness between everyone has been incredible but another bonus is that I’m not too far from home. I can get used to this new independent lifestyle and not have to stress too much about it. It’s exciting but sometimes you just need your parents there, haha!

How did you feel before you started?

I was honestly so nervous! Back at college you’re shoved in with these people and no-one really knows what they want to do or who they want to be and you’re like a little fish in a really big pond. And I was nervous that BIMM was going to be exactly the same and I was nervous my songs wouldn’t be good enough; everyone says I’m too hard on myself sometimes. I wanted somewhere to fit in and luckily I have found that place!

What has been your highlight so far?

Besides finding some amazing people to work with and just having a great time overall, my highlight so far was working with the house band for my LPW. I have never performed my own song with a band before. The amount of creativity you can put into it is incredible and realising where your sound is going is an great feeling. I struggle to identify my sound sometimes and my song with the band ended up being completely different to how I imagined, but at the same time I loved that. I’ve not been put in a box and restrained to one style and I can see that this was a big stepping stone to finding my own direction. Not to mention how fun it was to jam out and share your music with people.

Any advice for anyone looking to join BIMM next year?

I would say to just go for it and don’t hold back. Be confident with who you are and what you do. I definitely let that hold me back and got nervous when I really didn’t need to be. When you join BIMM you become a part of this wider community of musicians and you’re welcomed in with opened arms. BIMM is a place to be yourself and do what you do with loads of support behind you. So don’t let the doubts take over and just go for it!

What are you most looking forward to in the next three years?

I’m looking forward to seeing how my songwriting style adapts and changes, and learning all these eye-opening ways of writing a song. And also seeing what opportunities open for me along the way.

Photo by Gemma Berry, You Look Better Famous Photography

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Author

Sarah-Louise Burns

After studying Ba(Hons) Photography, Sarah has worked in Social Media Marketing since 2013 - she's now part of the BIMM Social Media Team, and is photographer for the Who, What, Why series.