How do you get your big break as a musician?
"Find out who's calling the shots and get your music to them," says Mobo Award-winning singer Kele Le Roc.
Sounds easy enough, and with the help of Hammersmith's Lyric Theatre, it just might be.
Step Up this Saturday is an initiative to make sure that if young talented performers can't get work seen by the right people – then the right people will come to them.
It's a talent-scouting opportunity hosted by Choice FM's Kat, where anyone – from aspiring singers and breakdancers to street poets – can take to the stage.
Kele will be on hand as a special guest performer, and as a mentor to industry hopefuls. "I'd love to be able to give pointers and tips," she says.
"In the real world it's as much who you know as what you know. Hopefully I can help kids hook up with the right people, or, in time, I'd love to sign
them up to my new record label, Freelance Diva."
Nine years since her single My Love won her a Best Newcomer and Best Single Award at the Mobo Awards, Kele says she's learnt her lessons
the hard way.
"I used to think everyone was my friend, but then you realise that trust comes rarely, and with time," the soul and R&B artist says.
And after nearly a decade of weeding out bad influences, Kele promises to be back this summer with long-awaited second album, From My Heart.
"It's been a rough ride," she says. "But finally the music will be a true representation of me."
Enrolled by her mother Juliet in stage and dance schools such as Yvonne Dearman's since the age of three, Kele's dream has always been to influence people to be happy and motivated through her music.
"All of my messages are positive," she says.
"My mother raised me on her own and was incredibly supportive. It was tough then to get a break.
"These days it's no use having a chip on your shoulder and saying 'there's nothing to do', there are so many projects to get involved and more opportunity than ever before."
Whether you're a potential performer or spectator, Step Up on Saturday to get one step closer to the big time.
Step Up, hosted by Kat of Choice FM, with special guest Kele Le Roc is at the Lyric Theatre, Lyric Square, Hammersmith, this Saturday, July 5. £6/4. 7.30-9.30pm. Call 0871 22 117 29. See www.lyric.co.uk
For Yvonne Dearman see www.ydpromotions.com
AND a lillte extra for the die-hard fans...
Kele's Top Five Tunes:
Prince, I Wanna Be Your Lover
Michael Jackson, I Can't Help It
500 Rekords, Keep It Alive
Shaka Khan, I Know You, I Live You
Nirvana, Smells Like Teen Spirit
Kele's Top Five Influences:
Her Mother, Juliet
Prince (far left)
Sing and dance teacher, Yvonne Dearman
English teacher, Mrs MacBarnet