Belfast Telegraph

Action needed to stop privately educated dominating charts - Labour MP

Ministers must act to prevent privately-educated singers and bands dominating the pop charts, a Labour MP has said.

Rupa Huq insisted efforts to encourage creativity and talent amongst youngsters outside of school would also avert " another all-white Brit awards".

The Brits came under fire due to a lack of black and minority ethnic artists among the nominees, with bosses signalling they would seek to address the lack of diversity wi th a "fresh look" at how they are chosen.

Ms Huq pressed Culture Secretary John Whittingdale for action during a questions session in the Commons.

Mr Whittingdale replied: "I would say to you that this country produces some of the finest music acts around the world and certainly a lot of the ones which I go to see certainly didn't go to public school.

"I'm looking forward to going to see Muse and I hope Rainbow in the coming months.

"But of course this is something where I want to see opportunity for everybody to succeed who has talent."

Ms Huq (Ealing Central and Acton) had asked: " To prevent our pop charts from being disproportionately dominated by acts from private schools, and to prevent another all-white Brit awards like the event that was criticised last week, would you consider starting a scheme similar to the much-missed music action zones that the Labour government created to encourage creativity and talent in music in non-classroom contexts?"

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