Songstress gets Government grant

Christian folk singer songwriter Philippa Hanna has a wealthy new fan - HM Government

Christian folk singer songwriter Philippa Hanna has a wealthy new fan - HM Government

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A Sheffield Christian folk singer is off to Nashville to record an album after receiving £12,000 from the Government to promote her career in the US.

Philippa Hanna, aged 30, from Handsworth is set to make a semi-permanent move to Tennessee to try to crack the country’s huge Christian music scene.

The grant will help pay for travel, visas, visits and studio time. It was made under UKTI’s Music Export Growth Scheme which aims to boost the UK economy through increased ticket and music sales.

Philippa has recorded three studio albums and an EP since 2007 and on Saturday night played Sheffield City Hall as part of her current tour.

She said: “It’s very exciting, Nashville is the songwriting capital of the world and I hope to build on the success I’ve had over here in a much bigger market.

“The grant has come at the right time, I’m already taking active steps to get established in America and I’ve made important contacts.”

One of her songs is on an album being released by a ‘major Christian church’ in the US, she added.

Born in Barnsley, she has lived in Handsworth for seven years, where she is a member of the Sheffield Christian Life Centre.

She has previously raised money through crowd funding and private investments - and even applied to the MEGS scheme unsuccessfully once before.

Philippa added: “This time I was able to demonstrate more of a track record and a well researched and plausible business plan.

“I’m not obliged to show a return on the money, but it was awarded by an industry panel which thought my projections were feasible.”

Business Secretary Vince Cable said: “Britain’s creative industries are the envy of the world.

“The Music Export Growth Scheme has provided help to some of the UK’s most promising stars, continuing our strong musical heritage while boosting the UK economy through increased ticket and music sales.”

Sheffield singer/songwriters Sam Genders received £15,000.

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