Press Release: 5th European Forum on Music European Music Council
For immediate release



BONN/ RIGA - 16/06/2015
5th European Forum on Music in Riga, Latvia - Access to Music is Digital?

From 11 to 14 June, more than 100 representatives of the European music sector came to Riga and Cesis, Latvia, to connect with the music life of Latvia and to discuss the topic of "Access to Music is Digital?". Following a successful year as a European Capital of Culture, the city of Riga presented itself at its best, offering its rich cultural life and opening the doors of its major musical institutions to international delegates.
 
The 5th edition of the European Forum on Music was opened with a keynote speech by the Minister of Culture of Latvia, Dace Melbarde, who spoke of Latvia as the "country that sings" and emphasized Riga's role as a laboratory and a powerhouse of world-class opera singers. Her statements were backed by three days of musical showcases, compiling so much musical talent that it was hard to believe that Latvia is a country with a population of just two million.
 
The two carefully chosen main venues for the conference were also an orchestrated display of the country's efforts to cultivate and promote its musical heritage and outreach. The Jazeps Vitols Latvian Academy of Music, Latvia's major institution for higher music education, welcomed delegates on the first day of the conference and allowed to take a glimpse behind the scenes of the country's rich musical life. On the second day, the conference moved to the newly built and highly impressive Cesis Concert Hall, which displayed the country's celebration of music life, among others with a concert of the Latvian National Symphony Orchestra.
 
It is also in Cesis Concert Hall that the role of concert venues in the digital age was discussed. On this occasion Andrzej Kosendiak, artistic director of the National Forum of Music in Wroclaw, joined the discussion. The venue will open its door on 4 September 2015, just in time to welcome guests to Wroclaw as a European Capital of Culture in 2016. The setting was perfect for discussions revolving around the relation of these brand new venues to the European Capital of Culture scheme, their digital strategies and the roles and responsibilities resulting from the financial support of the EU's structural funds. The EMC is also proud to announce that the Forum in Wroclaw will be host to the 6th edition of the European Forum on Music in 2016!
 
All the above reasons encouraged more than 100 representatives of European networks and organisations to come to Latvia to discuss the topic of "Access to Music is Digital?", making th 5thedition of the Forum a success. Besides questions of copyright and remuneration in the digital age or audience development via digital means, topics such as musical inclusion were discussed. Delegates were deeply impressed by demonstrations of how technology can help individuals across Europe overcome disability to learn and perform and become involved alongside their able bodied peers, as well as recent developments in the field of music education.
 
Over the course of the coming days and weeks the EMC staff will work on up-dating the EMC website with presentations and photos from the Forum. If you have any further questions or requests, please feel free to contact us:
 
Till Skoruppa
Programme Manager
skoruppa@emc-imc.org
+49 228 96699664
 
European Music Council
Haus der Kultur
Weberstra├če 59a
53115 Bonn
Germany
 



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