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'We'd put the clocks back ... every Friday after 5pm for eight hours' Kevin Bridges gives his take on independence

IT was a moment the star-struck fans were waiting for:

Kevin Bridges and Emeli Sandé meet fans at the Radio 1 Academy in Glasgow University's Queen Margaret Union yesterday, while top right, DJs Pops and Tigerstyle take over a class, and fans queue to get inPhotographs: Stewart Attwood

a snatch of live music from singing superstar Emeli Sandé. The best-selling singer, who has written tracks for Susan Boyle, Alicia Keys and Rihanna, yesterday returned to her alma mater to take part in the Radio 1 Academy.

In a setting far removed from her usual sell-out venues, Sandé gave a Q&A as part of the opening of the event, which ties in with the Big Weekend, set to come to Glasgow Green at the end of the month. A few dozen lucky fans joined Sandé in a cafe at the top of Glasgow University's Queen Margaret Union for a session designed to give an insight into her life in the music industry.

The press were initially cleared from the room but allowed back just in time to hear fans ask their questions. If Sandé's management had been worried about the media hearing anything controversial, they could rest easy.

"Who would you like to work with?" was met with "I don't really know," while a primary teacher looking for advice to cure her school choir's stage fright was told: "I don't really know what to tell you. Deep breathing? Some yoga?"

Even a question concerning reality shows - about which she recently called the "exploitation" of contestants "heartbreaking" - was neatly dodged. But all was forgiven when she turned to the keyboard and demonstrated how she creates her songs.

Earlier in the day, a far more forthcoming Kevin Bridges spoke to Radio 1 DJ Huw Stephens about stand-up, his pet dog and the joys of performing in Australia.

The Glasgow-based ­comedian neatly took down a fan who asked if he was "looking forward to the independence" with "Looking forward to the independence? Are we no longer a democracy?

"I don't know if I'm looking forward to the vote, it's more the build up that interests me. I'm just focusing on the comedy side and imagining Scotland being let loose.

"We would put the clocks back ... every Friday at 5pm for eight hours. People have a fear at the thought of change but I'd say people have to do a bit of reading and watching opinion shows and make a decision based on that."

Success, he said, was marked by teachers, who had previously disciplined him for talking, "Paying £20 to see my show".

Bridges was the opening event for the Academy, which runs from May 10-16. Aimed at 16 to 19-year-olds, it offers a programme of workshops, Q&A sessions, master classes and gigs.With spaces available for more than 7000 teenagers, the event will see Sir Richard Branson, Rita Ora and Scots Biffy Clyro among those share their industry expertise. The Academy takes place ahead of Radio 1's Big Weekend 2014 on May 24 and May 25, featuring bands including Kings Of Leon, Coldplay and One Direction.

Cast members from Waterloo Road will host a TV acting masterclass while Radio 1 DJ Greg James and his team will give tips on getting into radio.

There will be live music with a performance by Rita Ora while BBC Introducing will host two nights of live music from up-and-coming local bands. Radio 1 will broadcast live from the Academy during the week with DJs Fearne Cotton, Scott Mills, Greg James, Charlie Sloth, Huw Stephens and Ally McCrae.

McCrae, who hosts BBC Introducing, a platform for young bands, plans to be hands-on throughout the course of the week and give his support to young people looking to the Academy for advice.

The presenter, from Glasgow, said this year's line-up was the best yet. He said: "Last year in Derry/Londonderry the talent we had involved with the Academy was great but - although I'm biased - I can honestly say that we've surpassed it this year.

"These aren't just famous people, these are really famous people. I can't believe we have Sir Richard Branson giving business advice. It can seem like this business is really London-centric and a bit separated from London so it's great that we have so much talent coming up here to Glasgow - we can show people what we have right here in this city.

"We want to show people that there are opportunities out there if you just go and get them. It's about nurturing a new generation of talent and showing them what's going on, what chances there are. I hope people take as much away from this as possible and use it to launch their careers."

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