River Reeves Foundation supports RNCM Young Artists

A proportion of proceeds from the sale of Viola Beach’s album will support a new initiative for young pop musicians across the Northwest.

The self-titled recording has been released on vinyl to mark the six year anniversary of the tragic death of the much-loved Warrington band (Kris Leonard, Jack Dakin, River Reeves and Tomas Lowe) and their manager (Craig Tarry), with some proceeds going towards an exciting new programme for young people in the region.

Viola Beach album cover The River Reeves Foundation, established by River’s dad and step-mum Ben and Sharon Dunne, will donate River’s portion of sales to the RNCM Young Artists programme, designed to give 11-18-year-olds life changing opportunities to learn from the very best and reach their potential.

Delivered by our world-renowned Popular Music Department, RNCM Young Artists will launch in September and offer year-round weekly sessions focused on composition, production and performance.

With full access to our fully equipped, state-of-the-art recording and producing studios, participants will work in bands, creating, recording and distributing original music and sharing their work in informal, friendly gigs and showcases.

Professor Linda Merrick, Principal, said: ‘This is a hugely exciting new programme which will support and inspire brilliant musicians, song writers and producers – the next generation of the region’s music creators. We cannot wait to work with these young people and help them to take the next steps on their musical journey. We know there is incredible talent right on our doorstep and RNCM Young Artists will provide the very best training, mentorship and music-making opportunities to help them achieve their dreams.’

The River Reeves Foundation is looking to support our ambition of offering full-fee bursaries for up to 50% of the young people on the Young Artists programme. These will be aimed at those whose financial circumstances have prevented them from accessing music training.

Travel and tech bursaries will be available to ensure the costs of transport and equipment don’t prevent participation, and we plan to work closely with the young people’s schools and networks to create a supportive framework for their music-making.

Alongside transformational music training and experiences, the project will increase the young people’s confidence and open up pathways for education and development that would otherwise be out of reach.

Ben and Sharon said: ‘River Reeves’ family both in Penzance and Warrington would like to thank all at SJM and Communion Records who have made this special re-release possible. Our most precious memories are of River making music and performing. We want the world to know that through the music, River along with his bandmates and manager will continue to
live on in all our lives. Let’s get it back up the charts where it belongs!’

To support the Foundation and the launch of our Young Artists programme, Riv’s Riders will be taking on the Tour du Mont-Blanc (TMB), a 330km cycle that sees riders climb over 8000m, the height of Mount Everest. Click here to donate.

To buy the album, click here.

10 February 2022