Sharyn Bellemakers: How Music Made Me

15th September 2022

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As part of our Music Made Us campaign, Sharyn Bellemakers from BIMM Institute Manchester explains her love for Manchester and it’s eclectic music scene as well as being a concert photographer.

One of my earliest music memories is having an mp3 player. I would listen to what I later found out was Chelsea Dagger by The Fratellis. I remember standing in front of the window with my headphones on and dancing to the song; I still do that sometimes…

I grew up in a very musical household, my dad works in music and loves sharing his favourites with me, and I, in turn, share my favourites with him. My parents encouraged me to play an instrument from a young age, which played a massive role in my musical education as they always exposed me to new things and encouraged me to explore the musical world.

I think this is what led me to study at BIMM Manchester.

Moving to another country at the age of 18 was a terrifying move, but it was also a fascinating one. Everyone always told me that if I got the chance to study abroad, it was something I had to do. I’d never been to Manchester before, so moving here opened a whole new world for me.

I’m delighted with my choice of BIMM Manchester out of all the locations. Manchester is an incredibly friendly city, and there’s always something to do. It is also a city where many great artists, like Oasis, Simply Red, Bee Gees and the more recent Blossoms, were based. I am excited to study with people who could become the ‘next big thing’.

Studying Music, Marketing, Media, and Communications at BIMM is a gateway into Manchester’s music scene. Besides studying, I also enjoy concert photography. Many of the gigs I have taken pictures at were from artists from BIMM or friends. It is incredible how I can combine my study and photography and how BIMM supports me in this.

Most recently, I shot BIMM’s end-of-term gig for degree students, they already had an official photographer, but I was welcome to come along and take pictures for my portfolio. (I’m going to insert some shameless self-promoting here) My website, is where I keep my portfolio and on my Instagram. Both have proven to be very helpful in showing my abilities.

I am still exploring Manchester as a city and, at the same time, exploring what I want to do with my life. I hate the word networking, but the activity does seem to be very beneficial from time to time. This includes talking to fellow students or your lecturers.

As I mentioned earlier, BIMM offers some great opportunities and acts as a gateway into the music industry, I can’t wait to see where I end up in five years.

Our Music Made Us campaign is told through the students, graduates, journalists, experts and passionate people who have been shaped by music. Discover their stories here.


BIMM University

BIMM University provides an extensive range of courses in modern music, performing arts, filmmaking, and creative technology to over 8,000 students across 14 schools in the UK, Ireland, and Germany. We have a long-standing commitment to providing the highest quality in creative industries education, allowing students to maximise their career potential in an inclusive community built on a culture of shared passion, creativity, and collaboration. Berlin | Birmingham | Brighton | Bristol | Dublin | Essex | London | Manchester