BIMM Cities

From Leiria to Birmingham with Filipa Gaspar

23rd July 2019

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What attracted you to study at BIMM in Birmingham?

My decision to come study in the UK was made 3 months before my first year was due to start, so you can imagine how quickly it was decided upon. I wanted to study alongside people who would have the same passion as me (music), so I saw BIMM as the best option to start my music journalism career.

Going to the city where heavy metal was born was one of the main reasons why I wanted to go to Birmingham. I felt that it would give me a sharpened insight into the genre as well as the city itself. Likewise, it is the second largest city in the UK, so it would give me a wide range of opportunities.

It’s also a very multicultural place, with a lot of good and friendly places to visit. As Birmingham is well connected to other big cities in the UK, it is super easy to visit them, so you end up exploring a large part of this country which is absolutely great.

How does the music scene in Birmingham compare to your hometown?

It is actually pretty curious because there are similarities between them. Leiria (my hometown) has a really diverse music scene and is home to some great artists recognised throughout Europe and America. In Birmingham, we see a supportive atmosphere between bands, almost like a family. The same happens in my hometown with artists such as Surma, First Breath After Coma, Whales or even The Gift being really well known for their musical identity, particularity and giving concerts throughout the world.

Also, as is the case in Birmingham, there are always bands rising in my hometown. I guess the only difference is the type of music that it is produced. Indie bands are a huge thing in Birmingham, but this city always embraces every genre. I feel that my hometown follows the same path, without that indie movement, but with an open heart to every genre that wants to find a place to rise.

What’s the music community like at BIMM Birmingham and Birmingham as a whole?

The music community in this city (more specifically in BIMM Birmingham) is really supportive. As I said before, we can see that friendly environment at gigs and in social media. I’m a little removed from it, as I’m studying Music Journalism, so I’m not really inside those communities. But as a journalist this is what I observe and confirm.

Any advice you would offer to someone looking to move to Birmingham to study at BIMM?

If your dream is here, don’t hesitate! You will find really nice people and tutors over here that will help you with everything. Studying at BIMM Birmingham offers you a huge opportunity for success and also to get to know big personalities within the music industry. Don’t be a shy little girl as I was at first. Just show everyone how good you are and never mistrust your capabilities. Enjoy what Birmingham has to offer you, because these will be the best years of your life!

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.