Representing 22 cultural and artistic organizations, spread over 17 countries with an audience of more than 2.85 million people per year, Liveurope and We are Europe co-organized a press conference in Brussels on March 30.
An initiative wholeheartedly welcomed by Sylvie Guillaume, Vice President of the European Parliament, who opened the event: ‘these projects are crucial to raise European citizens’ voices. They shed a light on young and innovative initiatives shaping tomorrow’s culture in Europe.’
Both projects, bringing together music venues and festivals, are supported by the EU.
Speaking on behalf of the European Commission, Corinne Rigaud noted: ‘What we see here today is the proof that the EU is not solely a bureaucratic construction. We are proud to support these projects’.
Culture, a dream generator to drive tomorrow's Europe
‘Europe must re-connect with its capacity to make people dream’ continued Fabien Miclet, coordinator of Liveurope. ‘We need to push for culture, youth and creativity to become the core of the European agenda. We intend to revive optimism in the European project’.
Frédérique Joly, co-founder of Nuits sonores festival (We are Europe project leader): ‘It is no longer time for analysis. It is time for action. It is time to win back our common European future.’
‘By promoting emerging talent in 14 concert venues across the continent, our platform builds bridges between cultures, territories and audiences’ said Elise Phamgia of Liveurope. ‘The EU single market was designed for car parts and light bulbs. We now see that it can also work with hip-hop and post-punk’ Miclet underlined.
Liveurope has supported more than 840 concerts of emerging European artists in the first two years of its existence.
Olof Van Winden, director of TodaysArt festival insisted on the added value of the We are Europe cooperation: ‘exchanging, sharing knowledge, ideas, vision, values is the heart of our European project’.
A sentiment backed by Georgia Taglietti, speaking on behalf of Sónar Festival, also a member of We are Europe: ‘Through a culture of diversity, we foster open-mindedness. We encourage creative thoughts and welcome ideas from wherever they come. Because shared human experience transcends political boundaries’.
In total, We are Europe will ignite 56 co-curated programs over a period of 3 years, involving each year 300 speakers, 500 artists.
A united front against the rise of anti-EU movements, from the Greek economic crisis to Brexit
Moderator Joe Muggs (The Guardian, UK) expressed his pleasure of being ‘in a room full of people from different nationalities and backgrounds, brought together behind the same positive message’. ‘Especially in the complicated context of Brexit’, he added.
Glenn Max, artistic director at Village Underground, a London-based venue, stressed the importance of working with Liveurope. ‘It is crucial for us, now more than ever. We have to continue promoting European values in London. The fight has just started’.
A view shared by Anastasios Diolatzis, co-founder of Reworks festival in Thessaloniki, Greece: ‘We hope there can be more initiatives where creative communities can be involved in these kinds of programmes. For the first time since the beginning of crisis in Greece, we see that happening with We are Europe’.
Vincent Carry, Director of Nuits sonores, concluded: ‘this event was only a first step but it was a great success. We are looking to forward to the upcoming collaborations with other like-minded projects, because it has become urgent to connect our initiatives’.