Fira Mediterrània participates in a joint project with Foundation Royaumont, and other festivals including those in Avignon and Aix-en-Provence. In Spain, Fira launches a partnership with TROVAM – the only spanish music fair in Valencia. Txarango will enter the Portuguese market for the first time through Fira Mediterrània. To give both our music and artists new horizons – this is the overriding objective of the Fira Mediterrània Manresa Action Plan 2014. The plan is deeply committed to working via networks, comprising twenty-two strategic action points. This has led Fira to renew important partnership agreements, established over recent years, and expand its scope to include Algeria, Portugal and France, and other countries.
Fira’s involvement in the export of artists from Catalan culture has been a natural process that has taken on increasingly greater significance as Fira has created international alliances with festivals, trade fairs, institutions and artists over the years. Currently, access to new markets is a must-seize opportunity, particularly for the performing arts and music industry which has traditionally been one of the key exporters of southern culture.
The twenty-two action points to be implemented in 2014 include notable, progressive partnership agreements with the prestigious Foundation Royaumont, the French lobby of world musicians Zone Franche, the Portuguese circuit Ou Tonalidades, and the start-up of relations with Algeria.
New International Partnerships
The Foundation Royaumont, a prestigious French institution that commemorates its 50th anniversary this year, has a powerful artistic creation residency programme orientated towards dance, classical music, old music and world music. The institution has signed an agreement with Fira Mediterrània that focuses on two areas: Firstly, Fira will coproduce WASL, a project by the Palestinian singer Kamilya Jubran (due to go on stage at Fira Mediterrània in 2015). The project will be included in the Cinq Chants cycle at the Avignon Festival this year from 20 to 24 July. This cycle, headed by the Foundation Royaumont, is co-produced by Avignon Festival, Aix-en-Provence Festival, Villes des Musiques du monde Festival, Fira Mediterrània Manresa, Hangar 23 (Rouen) and Ville de Gonesse. Secondly, Foundation Royaumont will host a spanish artist, proposed by Fira Mediterrània, at a creative residence in 2016, at the spectacular abbey run by the foundation at Asnieres-sur-Oise (Île-le-France).
Fira Mediterrània has sealed a partnership deal with the powerful lobby of world musicians Zone Franche which will see important agents from the French music market attend Fira Manresa. This has been made possible through the involvement of the Institut Ramon Llull and funding from Spanish Cultural Action.
This year, Fira has also closed a deal with the Portuguese live music circuit Ou Tonalidades, to be held in the autumn. As a result of this partnership, the Catalan band Txarango will be launched on the Portuguese market for the first time with a mini concert tour in December. As part of this partnership agreement, a Portuguese band will play at Fira Mediterrània and the coordinator of Ou Tonalidades, Luís Fernandes, will take part in the Business Area’s speed dating from 9 to 11 October.
With the aim of strengthening relations with North Africa, this year marks the start of a relationship with the Cultural Influence Algerian Agency (AARC). The partnership project will see the mutual invitation of an artist, as well as participation by an official delegation representative at the Fira Mediterrània’s Business Area.
TROVAM! – New partnership
Fira has signed a partnership agreement with the only music market in Valencia, Spain, Trovam. This music fair began in Castelló last year and aims to promote music from the Valencia scene, consolidate itself as a hub for music industry debate and analysis, and help strengthen connections within the Spanish music industry. Another key aim of the market is to become a gateway for projects and promote a Mediterranean corridor of industry professionals and cultural projects.
Trovam! is a project by the Valencian Music Association (VAM!), comprising the LaCasaCalba association, Mésdemil, Metrònom, Pro21 and Suport Produccions. The partnerships launched with Fira Mediterrània will see the two fairs exchange bands in their respective programmes, as well as other initiatives involving communication and professional involvement in the two markets. Trovam will also run one of the speed dating sessions as part of the Fira Business Area.
At the same time, to consolidate projects launched over previous years, Fira has renewed its partnership with the Italian region Puglia, which enables a Catalan band to perform at Medimex – Music Innovation Expo, the biggest musical market in Italy, currently in its fifth year. Fira has also renewed its partnership agreement with Internationale Kulturbörse Freiburg, one of the biggest performing arts fairs in Germany; with the Mirabilia Festival, the benchmark festival of circus and street art in Italy; and with Estivada, the interregional festival of the Occitan culture (France) – the flagship of Occitan artistic festivals. With this final partnership, Fira also aims to promote the internationalisation of artists and facilitate the launch of cultural projects on the market.
Other partnership agreements within Spain and an EU project
As regards the rest of Spain, Fira has also signed a partnership agreement with the Basque Government / Etxepare Basque Institute and has renewed partnership agreements with the Segovia Folk Festival, the Huesca International Theatre and Dance Showcase and Zaragoza City Council for the ‘Off de Calle’ competition.
As for projects funded by the European Union, this year Fira hosts a concert by ten young artists from five different countries (Catalonia, Portugal, Greece, Estonia and Italy) who took part in the European programme Folk music in MusEUms – Young Musicians / Old Stories. Catalonia was represented by two musicians: Pau Figueres, guitarist, and Manu Sabaté, dulzainas, shawm and clarinets. The show has already gone to stage in Estonia, Italy and Portugal, and has been recorded in a Studio in Greece. It is due to come to Fira this year, showcasing a joint project that unites young musicians, old instruments and traditional repertoires from Europe.
SUMMARY OF NATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL ACTION PLAN – 2014
Internationale Kulturbörse Freiburg (Germany)
International Circus and Street Performing Festival – MIRABILIA (Italy)
‘Off de calle’ from Zaragoza – Street theatre (Aragon)
Foundation Royaumont (France)
Ou Tonalidades (Portugal)
Folk music in Museums – Young Musicians / Old Stories (European Union Project)
Interregional Festival of the Occitan Cultures – ESTIVADA (France).
Puglia Sounds – Medimex (Italy).
Folk Segovia Festival
Partnership agreement with the Basque Government / Etxepare Basque Institute
Professional industry-based partnerships
Zone Franche (France)
Interregional Festival of the Occitan Culture – ESTIVADA (France)
Puglia Sounds – Medimex (Italy)
Huesca International Theatre and Dance Showcase (Aragon)
Trovam Womex Babel Med Music Puglia Sounds – Medimex
Fira Mediterrània Manresa-Catalonia is a member of the following organisations:
International network for contemporary performing arts (IETM) European Forum of Worldwide Music Festivals (EFWMF) The Spanish Government’s Performing Arts Fair Coordinator (COFAE) ANNA LINDH Foundation – Network