The Liveurope group is inviting five concert venues across Europe to join its project to boost the programming of young European acts across the continent.
Since 2014 the original 13 venue members have risen to 16. Each has been backed with EU money to book and promote emerging, non-national European acts, encouraging the cross-fertilisation of musical experiences and helping young performers establish an international audience.
Coordinated by the Brussels venue Ancienne Belgique, and supported by the EU’s Creative Europe programme, the group currently includes one venue in 15 EU and EEA nations, plus Village Underground in London. It is supervised by a rolling steering committee comprising three member venues, currently Blå in Oslo, Palác Akropolis in Prague and Musicbox in Lisbon.
The concept is working. Liveurope claims to have seen an average 63 percent increase in European acts booked by the members. ‘Thanks to the cascading grant system, our venues across the continent are provided with a simple, unique and progressive tool to continuously boost our European programming from one season to the next,’ said Matjaž Manček, artistic director at Kino Šiška, the Slovenian member venue. ‘Liveurope has changed our programming approaches and gave our audiences access to new acts they might not have discovered otherwise.’
The EU has published two reports recently, ‘Analysis of market trends and gaps in funding needs for the music sector’ and the ‘European Music Export Strategy Study’ that call for more investment in non-English-speaking repertoire and to promote it outside each home nation. This matches the ideas that conceived Liveurope and the group is hopeful of substantial additional funding to achieve that aim.
‘The conclusions of this study are crystal clear,’ said Tom Bonte, Director of Ancienne Belgique, Liveurope’s coordinating venue. ‘There is a potential at EU level to leverage the impact of initiatives like ours. By increasing their budgets to include a greater number of live music venues, there is an opportunity to create a level playing field and increase Europe’s musical diversity,’
If this hope is realised, it will allow an expanded membership as well as potential support for artists at festivals and major concert venues. So, Liveurope is inviting applications for five new associate members.
‘Our key mission is to encourage concert venues to promote the circulation of emerging European artists through an efficient, simple and progressive bonus mechanism,’ the Liveurope offer states. ‘In addition, our tight-knit network helps our members to exchange common challenges and good practices regularly and get closer to each other’s music scenes.’
Applications need to be received by 19 February 2021 and the details can be found here.