Liveurope is the first pan-European initiative supporting live music venues in their effort to promote the circulation of emerging European artists. Launched in 2014, the platform gathers 14 members throughout Europe bringing together an audience of more than 2,5 million people per year.
Thanks to the support of Creative Europe, our platform has showcased over 1800 artists of more than 30 nationalities in four years. Liveurope is considered as ‘one of the music platforms highly performing in terms of number of emerging artists showcased and visibility’ according to Karel Bartak, head of Unit of Creative Europe at the EACEA Agency. In their latest study on ‘Mobility of artists and cultural professionals’ for the EP’s CULT Committee, KEA European Affairs refers to the quality label used by Liveurope as a good practice to be encouraged in a dedicated EU mobility scheme.
We welcome the European Parliament’s proposition to double the Creative Europe budget in the 2021-2027 multi-annual financial framework. This increase from €1.5bn to €2.8bn would represent a significant boost for the European Cultural & Creative sectors, and ultimately unleash their potential. We call upon the Member States and the European Parliament to pursue this commitment with the following actions.
1. Earmark a stronger support to the music sector to reflect its contribution to the economic, social and societal development
As suggested in MEP Giorgos Grammatikakis’ report on the New European Agenda for Culture, the music sector is severely underfinanced: accounting for 1m jobs and over €25 billion in turnover, the music industry has only benefited from 3% of the current Creative Europe programme.
The specificity of the music industry and the need for a tailor-made support are currently examined in the Music Moves Europe Preparatory Action that was endorsed by the CULT committee two years in a row. These issues will also be discussed in the Council Work Plan for Culture 2019-2022.
These initiatives are a first step towards the realization of a music policy at EU level, but their impact will be limited if they are not better reflected in the proposal for the future Creative Europe programme.
2. Encourage the cross-border circulation of works, artists and repertoire: a key priority for the European live music sector
In a fast-changing & fragmented music ecosystem, the live music sector is an entry point for many artists at regional & European level. Music venues & festivals give the chance to emerging European artists to break borders and access to non-national markets. Stimulating touring opportunities can help artists sustain and develop their international careers.
We highly welcome the introduction of a mobility scheme for artists and cultural operators in the future Creative Europe programme but this should also remain a primary objective of the cultural strand sectorial actions, particularly for the music sector.
For instance, the Europa Cinemas network was a game-changer in the European audio-visual programme, for its ability to facilitate the circulation of European films in theatres. Such a successful scheme has the potential to be reproduced and expanded within the other creative and cultural sectors.
3. Leverage the impact of success stories in Creative Europe 2021-2027
Platforms were introduced in Creative Europe to promote young European talents. Since their creation, the number of applicants increased by 166%, making platforms ‘best-sellers’ of the current programme.
The cascading grant system offers flexibility to its beneficiaries in the distribution of custom-fit support to cultural operators, according to the needs of each sub-sector. In turn, platforms are well-recognized in their respective fields and benefit to different stakeholders in the value chain (from the artists themselves and their entourage to the organizations involved).
In four years and with just a little bit of seed funding, Liveurope has increased by 63% the number of emerging European artists showcased in the platform. With at least twice as much funding, we could double the number of platform members, extend our coverage to all EU Member States, and structurally increase the diversity of European programming in venues all over the continent.
The future programme ought to increase the funding dedicated to these innovative actions and thus maximise the good practices of the current programme.