As part of the celebrations for Europe Day, Ancienne Belgique threw a series of concerts featuring promising talent to show the immense diversity of European talent and creativity.
Innovating from the simple concert format, each performance was introduced by short speeches from various high-profile personalities, to put forward an alternative vision of Europe, fostering culture, diversity, youth and openness.
‘We believe it is more important than ever to convey progressive and optimistic messages to view Europe with a fresh eye, especially in the light of the current political climate’ declared Fabien Miclet, coordinator of Liveurope. The EU-funded platform bringing together 14 European concert venues organised the event at AB.
This eclectic electro-themed night was opened by the Norwegian postrock duo Aiming For Enrike who is already getting big in Scandinavia but is just starting to break through in the rest of Europe.
Andri Søren Haflidason, artist, cultural activist and co-founder of the FTRSND collective in Brussels, opened the night with a plea in favor of the celebration of European differences. 'Music is a bridge-builder, it knows no borders. It connects people wherever they come from to make the best of diversity'
Javi Lopez, one of the youngest members of the European Parliament, added : 'it is necessary to help the European project to reconnect with its citizens on a grassroots level. Which is why I believe EU should increase its efforts to support the music sector.'
What the future holds in store for the European music scene
Following the energetic warm-up delivered by the up-and-coming Belgian band Meteor Musik, the night ended with a bang with French sensation Carpenter Brut. An immersive live performance amplified by fragments of old school cult & horror films.
Laura Snapes, British journalist and editor, took the stage towards the end of the event to convey a message in the context of Brexit: 'I can’t understand why anyone would want to make it hard for music to flow between nations and their people, allowing for not just creative collaborations, but the exchange of progressive social ideas. But thinking again, perhaps that’s exactly why Brexit voters, right-wing politicians and opportunist hacks want to limit the spread of music across borders – because they’re fully aware of just how influential a medium it really is.'
Europe Day was also celebrated across other venues among the Liveurope platform over the continent, with concerts organized at FZW in Dortmund, at A38 in Budapest and at L’Aéronef in Lille.
Fabien Miclet concluded. 'Bringing activists and artists together during the same event is an unusual format, and we want to continue our efforts so that people can come together, listen and talk to each other. It’s the essence of the European message.'
All videos of the shows & speeches can be found here.
Photo credits : Damon De Backer