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‘Next Up’ Fellowship provides support for Indy’s rising artists

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Indy has a lot of talent and a new fellowship is giving musicians the tools they need to take the next step.

GangGang, an organization focused on preserving culture through the arts, is leading the charge.

GangGang’s Next Up Fellowship is a professional development program of sorts that shows participating artists the ins and outs of the business. Part of the plan is to make the Circle City a place where artists feel they can stay and grow.

Alan Bacon is the founder and president of GangGang and he is partnering with Arts Council and the City of Indianapolis to do this work.

“Preserving culture, you do that in a myriad of ways. Whether that’s from a visual art aspect through design, storytelling through music,” Bacon said.

During the fellowship, artists have received customized coaching in areas of entrepreneurship, branding, performance, and the ins and outs of the music industry. The fellowship will end with an artist showcase.

“Understanding that we have a lot of creators leaving versus what would get them to stay. We don’t want our creatives to leave, we want them to lead,” Bacon said.

Indy artists like Ed Lanier are next up and ready to take the stage and see where their talents can lead them. Lanier is one of nine artists participating in the Next Up Fellowship.

Lanier’s music is a combination of rock, funk and soul.

“It allows me to interact with different types of people. Because they enjoy that type of music traditionally,” Lanier said.

This style is true to his spirit, and something he says sets him apart. He knows he’ll need not just talent, but knowledge.

“We have weekly meetings with different people. They do different things within the music industry and it helps just develop you fully as an artist,” Lanier said.

The Next Up showcase is set for March 25 at the Vogue. Tickets are on sale now.