UPBEAT – The European Showcase Platform for World Music

UPBEAT is the European Showcase Platform for World Music, currently counting 14 festivals among its members. This platform, co-funded by Creative Europe, supports European world musicians, festivals and professionals, with a focus on sustainability
and talent discovery. Our mission is to create a forward-thinking and thriving world music industry in the region.
We are a support system for the most prominent and promising European world music showcases and festivals. We shape the future of the European music industry by supporting new talent, music in original language, and by facilitating stronger connections between local professionals. We also support sustainable developments. Our quest is to ensure a thriving and forward thinking world music scene in Europe, with a wide artistic and social impact, for the benefit of artists, festivals, audiences alike.

The objective of UPBEAT – The European Showcase Platform for World Music is to increase the visibility of emerging European talents in the world music scene in the European Union and beyond. The Platform consists of the most prominent and promising European showcases and festivals that showcase world music from Europe.

– Their joint and harmonized actions will:

o enhance artistic collaboration on the European level through connecting different European World Music showcases and motivating them to realize activities together,
o help the circulation of artists and works at an international level,
o support at least 50 emerging artists per year in enhancing their career on the international scene
o build capacity of emerging artists performing World Music, through information and
o opportunities offered by the platform and through mentoring,
o create a brand and unite marketing efforts of World Music showcases,
o collect and disseminate data, information, good practices, ideas and solutions within and outside of the platform, and represent the World Music sector at national and European level, and
o develop and introduce innovative practices resulting in fairer and environmentally more sustainable showcases.

Partners in UPBEAT Project, alongside Password Production are: Hangvető (Budapest Ritmo) [HU], Piranha Arts (WOMEX) [DE], AMITY (World Music Festival Bratislava) [SK], VSI Saules Muzika (Saules muzika Festival) [LT], Associazione Culturale Folkgiornale (FolkEst) [IT], Colour Production (Czech Music Crossroads) [CZ], A to Z Foundation (A to Jazz Festival) [BG], Shiftworks (Tallinn Music Week) [EE], Muziekpublique (Hide & Seek Festival) [BE], Asociatia Kalotaszegnte (Méra World Music Festival) [RO], Association “Pasaules mūzika” (Porta Festival) [LV], Centrum Kultury i Sztuki im (Pannonica Festival) [PL], Wien Macht Kultur (Waves Vienna) [AT].

The key messages of the UPBEAT, The European Showcase Platform for World Music – hence of its branding and the quality label as well – is innovation, sustainability and diversity.

Main Features:
– Collaborative: The UPBEAT brand must also make international, cross-genre collaborations more accessible to make folk and world music industry participants. In practice this means that the network would offer a digital platform for partners to facilitate artist and information exchange. The best of these collaborations would be our flagships in communication.

– Innovative: The platform would promote and support artists, music industry professionals and events that stand for the values of sustainability, innovation and who represent the future of the world and folk genres. What are the bands, events, projects that can bring folk and world music closer to a new, young audience? What are the subgenres, trends and currents that can spread further, faster? UPBEAT works to find and highlight these, to give them a jumpstart on the market.

– Sustainable: Safeguarding world music and folk by popularizing it is a way to honor a living, breathing, diverse heritage. Europe is a culturally, linguistically and musically diverse area, with a diversity that transcends borders and nationalities. A sustainable, responsible approach to cultural and heritage management is something that the joining partners are committed to.

– Quality Label Strategy: It is important to us that UPBEAT becomes a signifier of quality and of innovation in the world and folk music scene. The strategy is the following: The Platform would establish yearly Awards with travelling ceremonies between the showcase partners. The platform would award the Best New Talent, and would also give special recognition to eco-friendly, sustainably organized festivals and artists who stand for the issue of environmentalism with the FUTURE awards. The Platform promotes specific stages at showcases for UPBEAT artists. In the UPBEAT visual communication, the platform requires partners and grantees to use the platform logo as a stamp in their related communication material. The platform also focuses on representing professionalism via continuous research, policy suggestions and petitioning.

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