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Vacancy: Bookbug Musician in Residence

Job title: Bookbug Musician/s in Residence

Accountable to: Early Years Community Engagement Manager

Contract type: Fixed-term freelance role over 9 months

Fees: £5000 fee for approximately 20 days work

Location: Kirkcaldy, Fife and remote working

Project dates: August 2023–March 2024 (approximately – full schedule of expected delivery timeframes can be discussed at interview)

Deadline: Applications have now closed

About the role

We are recruiting a Musician/s in Residence to work with a group of children and families in partnership with our Bookbug for the Home community engagement programme. Bookbug for the Home practitioners support families in the community who may face barriers to accessing our universal Bookbug programme. Through the residency the musician/s will work with the children, their caregivers and support workers to co-produce a song/piece of music focusing on the benefits of singing/music on mental wellbeing, that will be turned into a music video for our Bookbug app which has circa 65,000 users and shared at a community launch event.

About the Bookbug programme

The Bookbug programme is developed and managed by the Early Years team at Scottish Book Trust, a national charity changing lives through reading and writing. The Bookbug programme is delivered in partnership with organisations and Early Years professionals across every local authority in Scotland.

Funded by the Scottish Government and Creative Scotland, we deliver universal and targeted programmes to help families and carers with children under five to share books, songs and rhymes with their babies and young children.

Find out more about Bookbug and watch this short video for an introduction to the programme.

The project

Scottish Book Trust's Early Years team have been awarded funds from Creative Scotland's Youth Music Initiative Access to Music Making fund.(this link will open in a new window) The purpose of this fund is to create access to high-quality music making opportunities out with school time for children and young people aged 0 to 25 years.

This particular strand of the project will place a musician/s in residence in The Cottage Family Centre in Kirkcaldy(this link will open in a new window) to work with a group of children (between ages 0–5) and their caregivers to sing and make music together over a series of 8–10 workshops. With a focus on the benefits of music on mental health and wellbeing, the musician will create a new song/piece of music with the families. The song/piece will then be used by the Bookbug community through our Bookbug App and website. At the culmination of the residency, we will turn the song into a music video and launch at a community event planned in collaboration with the families. We will also host a webinar and accompanying training resources for the Bookbug practitioner community and other early years musicians sharing the learning of the residency project.

The community group has been identified through our Bookbug for the Home community network. Bookbug for the Home trains practitioners and volunteers working in the community to support individual families who may face barriers to participation due to their personal circumstances. Support for the residence would be provided by both our community partners and the Scottish Book Trust Early Years Community Engagement team.

Key activities of the role

Who are you?


Residency location will be in Kirckcaldy, Fife. All workshops, community events and filming will take place at the community family centre. On top of this there would be online or in person meetings with Scottish Book Trust ongoing throughout the project.

Timeline and budget

This is a 9 month fixed term project. The majority of the project activity will take place between August–December 2023. Total fee of £5000 plus expenses. In addition to the residency fee there is up to £1040 available to pay for extra musician time on the day of recording the music video.

It involves 20–24 days of paid work

Your time will include: induction, training, meetings, 10 days of workshops and meetings with families, 10 preparation days and music/song composition, attendance and planning of community showcase event and music video, co-delivery of webinar for Bookbug practitioners.

Equipment and travel

Artists will be required to have their own PC, laptop or tablet computer and a reliable WiFi connection to conduct project meetings using Zoom or Microsoft Teams.

Travel to residency location and project meetings will be covered by Scottish Book Trust

How to apply

Applications have now closed

Deadline: Wednesday 19 July, 12 noon. Please note, this advert may close early if we receive a large number of applications so we would encourage you to apply as soon as possible.

If you wish to discuss any aspects of the role in advance of submitting an application, please email recruitment@scottishbooktrust.com(this link will open in a new window) marked for the attention of Helena Barrett-Duncan, Early Years Community Engagement Manager.