Elijah. Photo by James Gould c/o Butterz
Elijah. Photo by James Gould c/o Butterz


27 January 2017

We are excited to announce influential grime DJ and promoter Elijah will join Lighthouse as Associate Artistic Director from January 2017 until May 2018. In this new role, Elijah will curate and produce Last Dance, a new nationwide programme that examines the artistic and social importance of club culture.

Dizzee Rascal with Elijah and partner Skilliam for their New York R BMA Radio show
Dizzee Rascal with Elijah and partner Skilliam for their New York R BMA Radio show

Elijah is a rising international star in grime and UK club music, and a regular contributor to Boiler Room, Red Bull Music Academy and Vice. He is co-founder of influential grime label Butterz, described by the Guardian as “one of the genre’s smartest operations”. His work spans music programming, journalism, a&r and artist management, and shines a light on the artistic, social and economic challenges and opportunities for emerging artists.

Last Dance will present a series of critical club nights, with talks, performances and online publications, that takes the debate on the road and into clubs and galleries in cities across the UK, for a timely and urgent look at the rapidly changing landscape for artists and creative communities. A final manifestation in Brighton in 2018 will celebrate and support radical club culture as a communal platform for creative expression.

The project is supported by Arts Council England’s Change Makers Fund, which seeks to increase the diversity of senior leaders in arts and culture. Elijah will receive mentoring and professional development, connecting with partners, festivals and institutions in the UK and internationally, building skills and expertise alongside the Lighthouse team throughout the programme.

Elijah said: “I’m really excited to start working with Lighthouse. This is an incredible opportunity for me to continue doing things I’ve been doing independently for the last five years, and learn a lot from a team that’s been so warm and open to new ideas. They have made me look at my own work from a completely different perspective, and through my work I hope to do the same for others coming from similar backgrounds, that might not know that there are people that want to hear their voices too.”

Hedley Swain, Area Director, South East, Arts Council England, said: “For arts and culture to truly reflect our culturally varied society, diversity must be at the heart of our organisations. But to really make that happen, we all need to support a more diverse leadership. And so we are delighted to award a bursary to Lighthouse for Elijah. It will not only create an important opportunity for Elijah to cultivate his leadership skills through a programme of professional development, but also enable Lighthouse to harness Elijah’s influence to build on its wider commitment to diversity.”

Juha van ‘t Zelfde, Artistic Director, Lighthouse, said: “Elijah is incredibly gifted and generous. He has been one of the stand-out promoters, DJs and critical voices in British music in recent years. His passion for music, his understanding of how the internet is changing culture, and his kindness to his followers and fans are an inspiration. He is a natural talent, a young Thierry Henry joining Arsenal, ready to change the world. I couldn’t be more proud and grateful for this opportunity, and I can’t wait to work with him.”

Miriam Randall, Executive Director, Lighthouse, said: “This project is one of the most exciting opportunities we have had at Lighthouse and it has allowed us to make some really ambitious plans with Elijah. We’re an organisation that supports great talent and embraces change and innovation, so it’s an absolute honour to be working with Elijah and a very important part of our development. It’s a collaboration that feels like a perfect storm."

See more about Elijah.
Read the Press Release.
Read the Change Makers Arts Council Announcement.



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