Alumni Spotlight: Linda Plover - Musician, Performer and Co-founder of Blue Monkey PR
Originally from Lincoln in the UK, Linda Plover moved to Ireland in 2002 to study music at UCC, gaining an honours degree. A multi-instrumentalist, she sings, plays bodhrán, tin whistle and guitar and released two singles with alt-folk outfit Chunky Planet during her time at UCC. She is also the co-founder of Blue Monkey PR, an agency specialising in promoting music events and recording artists. A member of independent theatre company Burning Paper Productions, Linda will perform in '4-Play', a new four-part theatre production, bringing together four writers, each with a story to tell. Revealing their innermost thoughts and experiences, each play is performed by each writer, delving into a personal journey of self-discovery and one moment that profoundly changed and defined their lives. 4-Play takes place on 22nd November at the Firkin Crane Theatre, Cork, see www.firkincrane.ie for details.
Course/subjects studied in UCC and year of graduation
Bachelor of music. Graduation year was in 2008
Best memory of University College Cork
Finding out I had won the Donal 'Doc' Gleeson award in 2006. To receive this award was a real honour and gave me a huge boost of confidence as a musician and performer. The funding also enabled me to buy a new guitar and bodhrán, both of which have seen plenty of live performances since!
How has your time at UCC helped you to get to where you are now?
My time spent at UCC presented so many possibilities in terms of a career in music; developing musical technique and performance, studying and researching a diverse cultural musical programme, as well as an insight into music as an industry, I was given the opportunity to focus on areas that particularly interested me. As well as performance, I became interested in music management and media, which led me to setting up a successful music PR company co-founded in 2010. Blue Monkey PR promotes large-scale music events and festivals, as well as a number of successful recording artists. As well as PR, I continue my own creative output in music and theatre.
What is your advice to current UCC students?
Whatever course you are doing, there will always be times when the workload is overwhelming and looming deadlines stressful. Try and approach things not as a whole, but break it down into parts. Procrastination is easy to fall into, but try and override this, as leaving it to the last minute is extremely stressful.
What person/people at UCC had the most positive influence on you?
Mel Mercier, (former Head of UCC School of Music and Theatre) was at the time of my studies, music lecturer. I felt incredibly inspired by him, not only as a musician, but also his attitude to music and performance. His encouragement and inclusivity helped me become more confident as a performer and enabled me to step outside my comfort zone.
Were you involved in any Clubs or Societies?
As a mature student and mother of young children, I wasn't in a position to get involved in the clubs and societies.