2017 open mic competition open for submissions

This year’s competition is now full!


In recent years, Leigh Folk Festival’s Open Mic “competition” has developed into a prestigious event attracting a myriad cross-section of musical genres whilst, at the same time, effortlessly bridging the generation gap.

The peaceful sobriety and acoustic resonance of Leigh’s 600 year old church of St. Clement, the patron saint of fishermen, is both a spectacular and ideal venue. Passing visitors can muse a while, enjoy a free ad-hoc concert while sampling the scrumptious home-made tea and cakes gleefully served-up by the hospitable band of church helpers.

The following significant off-shoots have become established features of the festival’s Open Mic event:


The winner is awarded a “spot” on one of the Festival stages on Sunday in the buzzing and historical setting of the Old Town’s cockling village.

Previous finalists are invited by the festival organisers to headline a publicity/fund-raiser gig during the year.

Numerous acts who impress at the Open Mic continue to be approached by the LFF organisers to appear at the following year’s festival in their own right.



This Years Event

There are 16 available slots for this year’s Open Mic competition which will take place at St. Clement’s Church on Saturday, June 24th from 12.00-4.30 pm. Entrants perform two numbers of any musical genre ( covers and/or original material ) to a panel of judges.


Four acts will be selected by the judges to perform a third number of their choice in the Final.


One act is selected as the winner

The Open Mic is open to any performer or group of performers of any genre not already booked to play at any other festival venue over the weekend.
To book a slot please contact Mickie D on 07741 738 915 or email mickied1045@gmail.com


This years entries

Simon O’GRADY, presenting a mix of folk songs and his own work;
Katy FORKINGS, a 16 year-old playing original songs;
The HARDY PERENNIALS, a four-piece folk band from Chelmsford performing their own material;
Alex ADLINGTON, been playing original songs at Open Mics for a few years
Emily FRITH, another local teenager who has gone from strength-to-strength musically since cutting-her-teeth at the Festival’s Open Mic two years ago;
Jake BROOKER, local muso with original material influenced by traditional folk
Fay LITTLE, been wowing audiences at the Haverfolk club for the last couple of years
Ren STEDMAN, acoustic folk muso from Grays with a number of digital discs to his credit
Grace SULLIVAN-ROYALL, 17-year-old spoken-work poet starting out as a public performer
Ben & TOBY, an acoustic duo, at 14 & 12 respectively, the youngest entrants we have had to date!
Alex GROVER, accomplished solo artist formerly from Liverpool, one of last year’s Open Mic finalists
Luna TEBBS, 16-year-old acoustic guitarist been playing for a year
David LIVINGS, Southend singer/song-writer with elements of Folk, Country & Blues
Youth Strings Group, Six talented young acoustic musicians with a repertoire of jigs & reels
Joe GARNER, Another musician from Southend playing a mix of Reggae & acoustic originals.

Gary BYNORTH – plays his own material influenced by the likes of The Who, Paul Weller & Small Faces.

Previous Winners

2016: Winner: Simon Aldridge Finalists: Alex Grover, Ewan Sanderson & Freddie Webber
2015: Winner: Joe Hazell Finalists: Si Brandon, Rachael Hack, Louise & Mick
2014: Winner: The Folkwitz Finalists: Ellen Taylor, Colette Meury, Simon Brandon
2013: Winner: Rob the Liar Finalists: Gemma Khawaja, Daniel Nestlerode, Will Allen
2012: Winner: Annie Winter Finalists: Amy Sergeant, Nick Renton, Nestlerode
2011: No Competition
2010: Joint-winners: Fiddle Fit, Moose Finalists: Bluebell Wood, Joe Midgal
2009: Joint-winners: Beth & Daisy, Nick Renton Finalists: Reb Capper, Kelly & Mick Knightsbridge
2008: Joint-Winners: Sinead Orme, Mark Waterfield Finalists: Cliff Chapman, Mick Denny

No Comments

Post a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.