DICP feature

Arc Isla at The Soundhouse. Oxjam Leicester 2016. Photo: Kevin Gaughan.

Feature:  Dreaming in Colour Productions


Dreaming In Colour Productions is a promoter and local music business often appearing in the pages of this magazine. So, we thought it would be good to find out more about them.

We headed down to Humberstone Gate East to see the boss – Elisabeth Barker-Carley.

Elisabeth Barker-Carley of DICP. Photo by RhinoFeroSs photography.

I asked Elisabeth what was coming up in the near future:

Our plan this year includes taking over The Shed and we are just about to start renovations. We hope to reopen the venue on 1st April. I will be focusing on that.

Beth Jardine, our Productions Manager, is taking over the shows that we run at places like Pi Bar, Firebug and the Soundhouse.

This will not mean cutting back on work with other venues; running The Shed and DCIP are like two separate businesses. DCIP will still hire the Shed venue as a promoter for our shows there.

We have just launched the Cadence agency – which is our quirky covers band agency. We have acts like Take to the Skies, Martin and Strat, KGB Jazz, Tap Tonic and Hillbilly Jukebox.

I am going out on tour in March for a month with Nathan Grisdale. That tour includes 23 shows happening around the UK.

Arc Isla at The Soundhouse August 2016

We manage Leicester band Arc Isla and singer Toby Joe Leonard – his music is angled towards mental health issues; an important issue for everyone including people in the music industry.

Toby Leonard in 2015

We tour manage Juncture and Nathan Grisdale, we are the booking agency for the Cadence Agency which includes Martin Stract (Arc Isla), Tap Tonic, International Acoustic Playboys among others.

So how long has DICP been running?

DCIP has been running for just over four years, from late 2013. We opened up here, in these premises, in 2015. I am the sole director of DCIP but we all work together on the same level. Our first birthday in took place in August; we held a big party at the Soundhouse to celebrate it. We opened up Gaslight studios in September.

Arc Isla at The Soundhouse. Oxjam Leicester 2016. Photo: Kevin Gaughan.

What do you think of the music scene here in Leicester?

People seem to think that the grass is greener on the other side but after having been out on the road with many different bands, I think that Leicester has one of the strongest music scenes around. Everybody seems to work together here. Here the venues all work together. Many of our local venues will allow posters to be put up for gigs at other venues; people talk to each other. Myself and the other promoters have a really good system going where we try not to put clashing shows on – we align our diaries to avoid clashes. There is a community spirit here that you do not find in other places. I like it here – it’s big but it’s not too big and every one knows what they are doing.

Blackwell at The Cookie with Elisabeth Barker-Carley (Centre) in 2015

I think its got a good balance. In other cities I struggled to find 14+ venues for the tour. Shed, Soundhouse, Cookie allow young people to attend. All ages shows are important because it is young people who will grow to become the adult audiences of the future. Young people might not be liked by some venues because they don’t buy alcohol. It’s all about money making; less about music. In Leicester there is the right level of options. There is never too much going on. The right level of healthy competition, the right balance.

What do you think about the bands that we have here in Leicester?

I have noticed recently that a lot of Leicester bands are breaking up. There is a bit of a lack of established bands. We are getting acts to play at our gigs who are very well known bands on the national circuit. If they get to play with local bands they might take them out on tour with them. Some local bands are missing members. We try to put different acts on all the time. There are some incredible bands and artists in Leicester but some of them are not getting on very well.

I suggested that there has been a lack of band management in Leicester. Elisabeth agreed with me. She said ” We have had a lot of experience of working with bands, asking for management support and there is so much to do in running a band. It’s about being free of administrative duties, so they can concentrate on the things they are good at which is making amazing music. Pressures on bands are big factors in bands breaking down.

Who works at DCIP?

Beth – is our productions manager and second in command. She mainly focuses on managing Arc Isla and helps with tour bookings.

Jaz Hunt – is our creative manager. His main job is about branding and posters.

Dan – our new addition, works with me on various aspects of the business and takes care of the website

Edd Safell – is our studio manager. A producer not just a recording engineer.

Will Harding – our press manager has just come back to take over various online things. Help the rest of the world to get to know who we are.

Tell us how you chose the name for the business?

DCIP the name came about in 2013. I was doing my best to think of something. I read this article about only a small percentage of people can actually dream in colour. A creative person can see the colours in their dreams. That seemed to resonate with me.

What shows have you got something up, I asked. Elisabeth told me about the Nathan Grisdale tour in March with the final show in Leicester. Louise Distras at the Soundhouse, My Legacy album launch in February. Arc Isla on 11th Feb at Pi Bar. Empire and Chapter and Verse at the Soundhouse.

Visit the Dreaming In Colour Productions website.

Look back at the main happenings of 2016 at DCIP.

See also

Our new page for 2017 about Leicester Promoters.

About The Editor 536 Articles
The Editor of Music in Leicester magazine is Kevin Gaughan assisted by Trevor Locke