27 July 2015 | ARTICLE
STOMP’s creators Luke Cresswell and Steve McNicholas were awarded honorary Doctor of Arts degrees by the University of Brighton in recognition of their major contribution to music and performance.
During the ceremony at Brighton Dome Concert Hall – home to many a STOMP performance – Steve joked that they never expected to be honoured by a university, “We are not exactly academic success stories – I dropped out twice, and you (Luke) never dropped in.”
The pair, who donned traditional academic gowns for the occasion, were happy to share advice with the graduates from the College of Art, Design and Media.
Steve said, “The important thing is to do something you love to do. We didn’t start STOMP thinking ‘let’s create this thing that’s going to run for years and years and make us pots of money’. We were thinking, ‘let’s create something that no one else is doing and would really like to see’. That was our motivation.” Luke encouraged confidence and persistence amongst the graduates, “People are always going to say no… that your ideas are not good enough… but you just have to really believe in your strengths and your ideas and keep going forward, keep pushing and pushing.”
In true STOMP style they concluded their acceptance with an impromptu percussion performance – using their award scrolls and the lectern as instruments.