Both Sides Now with Beth Orton – closed

Go Back
Both Sides Now with Beth Orton – closed

Brighter Sound is delighted to welcome back the inspirational BRIT award-winning, Mercury Prize nominated and critically acclaimed artist, Beth Orton, to lead the first Both Sides Now residency.  

Both Sides Now is Brighter Sound’s ambitious three-year initiative to support and sustain gender equality across the landscape of music. Beth Orton with lead a five-day artistic residency for emerging female musicians of any genre from across Greater Manchester, Cheshire and Lancashire from Sunday 19 to Thursday 23 November. We’re looking for beatmakers and soundscape instrumentalists, songwriters and spoken word artists who have an interest in collaboration and experimentation – with an open mind to seeing what develops from the process.

Successful applicants will work with Beth and like-minded musicians to create new music, contemplate dialogue and response in the process of songwriting, and perform at the launch of Both Sides Now on Thursday 23 November to an audience of specially-invited guests.

Applications are open until midnight on Sunday 22 October.


“I’d like the residency to be about collaboration and experimentation. Mixing sounds and textures and voices to create music beyond definition. I’m interested in songwriters of all influences and backgrounds applying. I’m hoping spoken word artists and beat makers and composers and sound scapers apply. I’d like for you to come along as individuals wide open to working together, supporting one another as artists in your own right, creating sounds and songs you might not have thought of without the other. I’m looking for stories that reach beyond genre or gender. For me, Both Sides Now stands for a space where you can feel free to create music you feel excited to explore, a language you get to define for yourself and not be defined by.” – Beth Orton

Beth Orton has been one of the most unique and beguiling voices in music for the past two decades. Her debut LP, ‘Trailer Park’, pioneered a synthesis of electronic and acoustic songs to huge acclaim, earning her first Mercury Music Prize nomination. The follow up, ‘Central Reservation’, brought international success and the Brit Award for Best British Female. Further albums, like ‘Comfort of Strangers’, have been widely acclaimed for the depth and focus of the songwriting. Beth is known for her open approach to collaboration – writing and touring with the likes of Beck, Bert Jansch and Emmylou Harris. Her sixth album ‘Kidsticks’ described as ‘Orton absolutely on top of her game’ sees Beth return to her electronic roots, co-producing alongside Andrew Hung of experimental duo, Fuck Buttons.

We’re also delighted that Beth Orton will be one of our ambassadors for Both Sides Now, a three-year programme for young and emerging female artists and industry professionals featuring residencies, commissions, training and apprenticeships alongside national and international showcases. Focusing on the North of England, we are aiming to bridge the gap in access, opportunities and career progression – introducing new voices to reshape a more equal and diverse music landscape.

Application Information

Applicants must be:

  • over 18
  • an emerging female musician
  • from Greater Manchester, Cheshire or Lancashire

Application deadline: Sun 22 Oct, midnight

Applicants must apply online*, answering three questions related to their own experience, the contribution they will make to the residency, and their reasons for applying, as well as submitting an example of their own music and one or two unfinished songs or ideas they would be willing for the group to develop during the week. A sample application form is available to download for reference before submitting an online application:

Sample application form

Online application

Successful applicants will be notified on or around Monday 30 October.

*We’re committed to supporting and meeting the needs of people with learning difficulties or disabilities. If you require the application in a different format or have difficulty completing your application online, please call us to discuss alternative options on 0161 830 3899.

For more information about this project please contact Kate Lowes on or call 0161 830 3899.