Boris buskers head to Paris for Eurostar busking excursion

04 April 2013

With the Mayor of London’s Gigs busking competition underway for 2013, one of the winners from last year – Jamie Thorn and The Mystery Pacific – played live to passing travellers at St Pancras International station this morning, before boarding a Eurostar train to Paris, where they were set to busk at locations around the French capital.

Jamie Thorn and the Mystery Pacific is a six-piece folk-rock band originating from Twickenham in South West London. Formed in 2011 during their college years, the band is a regular fixture on the live circuit scene and has already been featured by John Kennedy on XFM's Xposure.

Jamie Thorn and the Mystery Pacific won the Eurostar prize in last year’s Gig’s competition, which saw hundreds of bands, duos and soloists send in entries. As well as performing in the departure lounge and on the Eurostar platform at St Pancras, the band played to passengers whilst on the train.

They were set to play at different locations in the French capital, including outside the Centre Georges Pompidou and at the Sacré Coeur Basilica, Montmartre. The band has also landed a gig in Paris the same evening.

The Mayor of London Boris Johnson, who officially launched Gigs 2013 last week: 'I am thrilled that Jamie Thorn and the Mystery Pacific are heading to Paris as part of our Gigs competition. Gigs is bringing some very talented young musicians to a wider audience and shows why London is the musical capital of the world. I hope this mini musical invasion will underpin the entente cordiale that our cities enjoy as great international centres of culture and creativity.'

Gigs is the annual busking competition organised by the Mayor as a key part of his Music Education strategy, which aims to strengthen and promote music education for young people, as well as supporting London’s creative industries.

The music competition is open now to Londoners aged 11-25, who can sign-up at www.gigsbigbusk.com.

This year's shortlisted acts will take part in live performances at Gigs busking pitches at iconic London locations, major rail and tube stations and the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

The best acts - as chosen by expert industry judges and the Gigs public vote – will go head-to-head in the Gigs Grand Final at Westfield London on Sunday 8 September.

Winners will have the chance to win a coveted year's London Underground busking licence, recording sessions at a top professional studio, a year’s course at The Institute of Contemporary Music Performance, coaching from chart-topping songwriters, music equipment, exciting performance opportunities and specialist industry advice to help them towards a career in music.www.gigsbigbusk.com

Notes to editors

1. For more information about Gigs visit www.gigsbigbusk.com / www.facebook.com/gigsbigbusk Twitter: @gigsbigbusk

2. Gigs is a key part of the Mayor’s Music Education strategy – Rhythm of London.

3. Gigs winners and finalists are regularly talent scouted by promoters. In 2012, three Gigs acts were signed up by Live Nation’s new artist department

4. Previous winners include The Robbie Boyd Band (2011 winner), who are regularly played on Radio 2 and James Riley (2012 winner) and his nine-piece folk soul band who are about to release a debut EP.

5. Last year 500 young musicians performed during the Olympic Games in the Gigs 2012 busking competition. Between them they played over 2,000 hours of music to over 750,000 people.

6. One Gigs performer playing on the Olympic Park last year was spotted by Joan Armatrading.