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Gigs in Museums

Gigs in Museums is an exciting programme supporting museums and libraries to host live music events and attract new young audiences.

We created the programme in partnership with Get It Loud in Libraries (GILIL) in 2017.

Thanks to funding from the Welsh Government, five amazing gigs have been held at heritage venues across Wales. You can find out a bit more about them below.

How it works

We introduce interested museums to GILIL staff, who provide expert advice on all aspects of staging live music, from health and safety to marketing and ticketing. GILIL book the artists for each event, sourcing and showcasing some of best music talent in Wales.

We also work with partner museums to ensure young people are involved with all stages of the project.

Hold your own event

If you’re interested in running your own live music event at a museum, take a look at our Gigs in Museums Top Tips or our Ceredigion Museum Case Study.

If you’d like to be part of Gigs in Museums, wherever you are in the UK, get in touch by emailing: [email protected]

Past Events

National Slate Museum

Our latest museum gig was at the National Slate Museum on 28 October. Band CANDELAS gave a fantastic matinee show to a packed audience during the Welsh Museums Festival. The museum put extra tickets on sale for the event, which saw our largest audience to date.

Young people had a chance to take part in a sound sampling workshop using cups, teapots, hammers – and anything else they could find! Young volunteers from the museum also worked front of house and introduced the band.

After the show, a poll of audience members showed unanimous support for future live music events at the museum.

Llanelli Library

Llanelli Library hosted pop-rock band Estrons on 14 October 2018 as part of Libraries Week.

Wendy Tiffin: “The whole ambience of the library changed which definitely highlighted the fact that libraries are ‘more than books’, and even the fact that the library was open on a Sunday. The gig was an outstanding success, allowing people of all ages the opportunity to see up-and-coming artists in their local library. Young people, families and hardened rock fans intermingled at ease within shelves of books and a welcoming community space.”

Ceredigion Museum

On Sunday 25 March 2018, Welsh language artist Gwenno played to a full house at Ceredigion Museum. Members of the Ceredigion Heritage Youth Panel (CHYP) aged 16-24 were heavily involved in the event. They helped to market the event, worked with a local filmmaker to document the gig and coordinated a visit from Lord Elis-Thomas, Welsh Minister for Culture, Tourism and Sport.

Carrie Canham, Curator at Ceredigion Museum, said: “This was a really wonderful experience for Ceredigion Museum; the partnerships worked smoothly, it brought in new audiences, the CHYP had an invaluable experience and the Minister for Culture, Tourism and Sport was very impressed.  However, the highlight for me was seeing our visitors of all ages dancing their socks off and having a great time. It firmly established Ceredigion Museum as a cultural hub for the whole community.”

Bargoed Library

Bargoed Library’s gig with The Voice finalists, Into the Ark, sold out within two days of going on sale. On 3 December 2017, a third of the audience were new to the library and were given opportunities to learn about event management and sound engineering.

Sarah Pope from Caerphilly Library Service said: “The event raised our profile as a cultural hub and created lots of positive buzz within the library service and our communities… We had so many lovely comments and people have asked what we’re doing next!”

National Waterfront Museum Swansea

Our first Gigs in Museums concert was at the National Waterfront Museum in Swansea on 23 November 2017. Welsh singer-songwriter Betsy performed to a sold-out audience, many of whom had never visited the museum before.

Marsli Owen from the National Waterfront Museum said: “It attracted a diverse audience that were not as familiar with the Museum and opened the door to such events in the future, using the Museum’s strengths as well as promoting its collections and exhibition spaces.”