The first ever online WOMEX conference has ended with organisers and participants saying the new format worked well.
1130 industry figures from over 90 countries registered for the five day event to experience 38 jury-selected showcases, 21 music-based documentaries, 23 conference sessions, network meetings, mentoring sessions and 147 video stands.
With over 70 hours of streamed video content, the advantage of being digital is that delegates can view the parts they missed after the event on the virtualWOMEX platform, to suit their own time zones
With delegates unable to travel and Covid restrictions in the chosen location of Budapest, the decision to cancel the live WOMEX was taken, reluctantly, in July. But the 26th WOMEX, celebrating the importance of indigenous music found a new energy online, through the co-production of Piranha Arts and Hungarian partner, Hangvető.
Although the social aspect of the conference was missed, there were no queues to enter sessions, no rushing from one venue to another and less expense on food, drink, hotels and travel. Yet, there were still 20,000 delegate interactions on the official WOMEX networking channel, MatterMost, and live streams came from locations as far apart as Malawi, Mexico and Real World Studios in England.