Singing group Urban Flames bids to expand following stellar show at Music for Youth National Festival

Music group Urban Flames arriving in Birmingham ahead of their performance at the Music for Youth Na

Music group Urban Flames arriving in Birmingham ahead of their performance at the Music for Youth National Festival. Credit: Urban Flames - Credit: Archant

An ensemble of young singers from across Hackney is looking to swell its membership following a stellar performance at the Music for Youth National Festival in Birmingham.

The 20 members of Urban Flames – the youth arm of music charity Urban Development – are looking to sate the appetite of their growing fan base by releasing an EP and performing at more high profile venues in the UK later this year.

The aim of the group is to champion diverse, urban music from across the borough and provide underprivileged students with an education in music.

Pamela McCormick, the founder and director of Urban Development, said: “Our vision is to create an infrastructure similar to what already exists in the classical music sector, but for urban pop music, with an ensemble of rappers, singers and producers equivalent to the National Youth Choir, or the Youth Orchestra of Great Britain.

“We are continually looking to recruit more high potential talent into Urban Flames, opening out from Hackney to other areas of the country.

“I’m incredibly proud of our ensemble Urban Flames, who are such incredibly dedicated and talented individuals.

“We hope to have more high profile performances and music releases in the pipeline at the end of summer – the group is going from strength to strength.”

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Part of the group’s mission is also to make sure that the urban genre of music is firmly placed on the map, and that urban artists get the opportunities to hone their skills and showcase the talents on the biggest stage.

The youth festival in Birmingham, which took place on July 8, saw Urban Flames deliver performances of two original tracks, along with a cover of Kwabs’ “Perfect Ruin”, placing them firmly in the urban pop music camp.

Urban Flames member Rashád Cayenne-Davis, 17, said: “The experience was exciting, nerve-wracking and exhilarating. It felt incredible. Everyone really came alive in the moment.”

Fellow member Princess Olowogboye added: “Urban Flames is made up of amazingly talented singers and songwriters. Being able to be part of such a group is a blessing.”

Auditions for new recruits to Urban Flames will be announced at