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Big Fan launches Ignite youth programme

Story Published Wednesday 8 February 2023

After launching their purpose-built music space in 2022, BIG FAN are kicking 2023 off by announcing the first of four empowering new initiatives designed to develop and engage aspiring musicians, producers, songwriters and essential industry personnel.

The first of the initiatives funded by the New Zealand Music Commission is the Ignite Programme; a nurturing and empowering programme for rangatahi with a passion for music and events.

An eight-week music industry specific training programme, Ignite covers three streams:

  • Event Management
  • Event Production and
  • Music Production.

Ignite’s unique aim is to teach rangatahi not only creativity, but also complementary skills to support them on their journey in the business, while also exposing them to the incredible breadth of career pathways and opportunities that exist within it.

Savina Fountain, BIG FAN General Manager and Ignite Founder says, "After launching Ignite in 2016, we’ve seen our graduates go on to further education and careers in the music and creative communities. It is amazing to witness a spark in our young people when they are able to put the skills they’ve learned through Ignite into practice. That's how all of us learn, so to provide these young people with the opportunity to produce their own songs and shows is invaluable."

Available to rangatahi in aged 15 – 18 in Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland, the first intake of Ignite provides one-on-one mentoring with experienced industry professionals, seminars and hands-on workshops, practical experience, venue tours, and the application of learned skills such as promoting and running a live event. A second intake for Ignite will launch later in the year and will be open for applications for those aged 18 – 25.

Rangitahi will be able to apply for one of the three streams. The Event Management stream will accommodate ten participants, feature ten mentors from the music industry and produce four events at the end of the programme. The Music and Event Production streams will have an intake of five participants each, matching them with established music producers and technical mentors respectively. Music Production participants will develop a demo recording and enhance their production and songwriting skills by the end of the program; while Event Production participants will learn skills in the technical delivery of live music and apply them by assisting with the four Ignite events.

The first Ignite intake for 15 – 18 year olds will be open for applications from 8th February at Applications close on 20th February at 5.30pm.

Continuing their vision of being a collaborative space for musicians of all levels, the soon to be announced future programmes at BIG FAN will span song-writing, music production, event production and live event promotion throughout 2023 and 2024. The development of these programmes has been supported in part by the Ministry of Culture and Heritage and are created to offer education, mentoring and up-skilling to those looking to get their foot in the door of the music industry.

BIG FAN is run through The Little Family Foundation charitable trust which was created and developed by Gemma and Joel Little, and described as a gift to Aotearoa. This not-for-profit entity will be supported in part by venue and studio hire, with all revenue reinvested into the space and the work that goes on there, including the programmes. BIG FAN is more than a purpose-built music venue and state-of-the-art recording studios, it’s a community-led space that aims to help the careers of musicians and technical staff at all levels of their careers.


BIG FAN is a new not-for-profit, multi-purpose music space located in Morningside, Aotearoa New Zealand. Offering three world-class recording studios and a live music venue all under one roof, the team at BIG FAN are dedicated to helping people fulfil their ambitions through music.

Our goal is to create a community that brings people together, supports the role of music in the betterment of people’s lives, and fosters the talents of musicians, songwriters and those who make it happen behind the scenes, regardless of experience level.

Recording Studios | Live Music Venue | Community

To enquire about the world-class music facilities at BIG FAN or for more information, please visit: