Academy pupil is star in the making

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Inverurie Academy pupil and singer/songwriter Stephen Innes (17) has many irons in the fire which will keep him busy for the foreseeable future.

With plans to study journalism at Robert Gordon University, he said: “My dream is to be a singer/songwriter, but I recognise that I need to have something steady behind me. I’ve always been interested in writing and the media, so that’s what I chose.”

But Stephen has already clocked up some major singing engagements which take place before an anticipated trip to London to cut his own disk.

Having sung at a number of high profile events, including last year’s Fyvie Live, he will be one of the support acts for the Saturdays when they play in Peterhead. He said: “I’ve sung for the organiser, George Walker a few times and he wanted local artists to support the show.”

London beckons for Stephen at the beginning of June when he heads to Abbey Road to cut a disk: “I have a song of my own which I’d like to develop with them. They were really encouraging and are particularly interested in young male artists.” My song, entitled ‘Shot in the Heart Again’ is a sort of metaphor - it’s not really a dark song at all.

“The trip coincides with Queen’s Jubilee Week and my dad is coming along. He is a musician too and has been my biggest influence. He played in bands and did TV work when he was younger.”

Asked if he would like to write songs for other artists, Stephen responded: “My mission is to be a performer. Fyvie Live last year was one of the best times of my life, but I enjoy writing songs for myself. They convey my own thoughts and feelings - I write about things that have happened to me, so I can’t imagine writing for other people, but then you never know. I have huge ambitions and dreams.”

Stepehen’s first foray into performance was his involvement with Mitchell School of Drama (MSD). He said: “I loved doing drama. Going to MSD has given me the confidence to perform. I went to MDS and was taught by Rhona Mitchell for a period of ten years and I have a lot to thank her for. She teaches you stage presence. I left initially to do my Highers, but then the music happened and I never went back.”

Speaking about last year’s Fyvie Live and the number one act, Beverley Knight, he said: “I got to meet her afterwards and I have to say, she is one of the nicest people I have met. I sang at the VIP party after the event and she said she really enjoyed me singing ‘Rehab’ by Amy Winehouse, and she took a keen interest in what I was doing. It’s great that such a big star is so grounded.”

Stephen begins his journalism course after the summer and aims to continue his with his music career for the duration.