Leeds singer celebrates winning BBC folk artist of the year award

Maddie Morris performingMaddie performing live

“It’s not just what it means externally. For me it was a really big affirm-er that I am doing the right thing and it is worth pursuing.”

21-year-old Maddie Morris, who studies at Leeds College of Music, was given the BBC Radio 2 folk artist of the year award after performing the traditional balled Barbara Allen and her own song Where Do I Go.

The award was taken place at HOME in Manchester. ‘The nominees in most categories are chosen by a panel of 150 representatives from the British folk world. This year marks the 21st annual Young Folk Award and was open to musicians aged 18-21 years.’

The much-loved event has launched the careers of Jim Moray and Jackie Oates.

Maddie says when her name was called she initially did not stand up to collect the award out of disbelief.

She said: “They called my name and I just sat there because it didn’t feel real at all.

“The young folk award is really an amazing opportunity and I encourage anybody to apply for it because it’s not just the competition, you get to do a residency and meet so many amazing folk artists.”

@thehappysnappy Robyn Dewhurst Maddie was performing at The Arts Party

Maddie said she had to overcome prejudices to get to the place where she is now.

“I came from a really small town in Bedfordshire and it didn’t go too well for me.

Maddie performing at The Arts party

“I feel very strong about the LGBTQ community and how women aren’t treated so well in society so I had to overcome that.”

Maddie’s aspiration is to become a music therapist and concentrate on her live gig performances after finishing her degree in folk and traditional music.

About the Author

Emily Carson
Journalist for Leeds Now

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