South African Music Report at Music Cities Berlin

Press Release – For Immediate Release
Johannesburg, 29th March 2017
SAMRO Foundation’s live music development programme – Concerts SA – has been invited to present its latest research report at the next Music Cities Convention in Berlin.
Music Cities Convention is the world’s largest event to explore the relationship between city planning, strategy, development and the music industry. From venue and community space development to education, employment, event provision, licensing, regulation and demographics, the music industry impacts a number of issues prevalent in city planning, strategy, regulative and legislative aspects.
Under the theme of Music and Urban Development, the fourth edition of Music Cities Convention will take place in the historic Rotes Rathaus (City Hall) in Berlin on Tuesday April 4. The conference will bring together the top minds from municipalities, regions, academics, consultants and the music industry to discuss, debate and introduce new thinking, action and structure to develop more vibrant, global cities.
South Africa’s own Concerts SA initiative will be showcased amongst other selected organisations who have shown, through its work, a need for improved urban planning, city policy and development strategies through music. Concerts SA’s latest research report, It Starts with a Heartbeat, will be presented at Music Cities Berlin. Published in October 2016, the report builds on previous work produced by the project to set out practical options for supporting the growth of the live music sector – and evidence of why such support is a good thing.
It Starts with a Heartbeat unveils new audience research conducted in collaboration with the University of the Witwatersrand School of Arts, and provides up-to-date, detailed knowledge about what attracts audiences to live music, and what deters them. The report also suggests that local authorities have a key role to play in making live music more attractive and accessible to ordinary South Africans, and could lead to an improved quality of life. Policy options range from basics, such as improving public transport, to more innovative strategies such as giving the night-time economy (within which live music mostly occurs) a special status in planning processes. Cities elsewhere that have done this have seen both a growth in revenue from music activities and an improvement in safety and security, something South African cities sorely need.
Other speakers at Music Cities Berlin include Maria Vassilakou (Vice Mayor and Executive City Council, Vienna), Charles Landry (Author of The Creative City), Mirik Milan (Night Mayor of Amsterdam), Alejandro Rivera Rojas (Latin-America & Caribe Programme Officer, United Nations for Industrial Development Organization), Michail Stangl (Director, Boiler Room Germany), and Dr. Torsten Wöhlert (Permanent Secretary for Culture, Berlin).
Concerts SA is a joint South African/Norwegian initiative housed within the SAMRO Foundation; it receives financial, administrative and technical support from the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the SAMRO Foundation and Kulturtanken Norway. Working with musicians, promoters, venue owners and audiences, the project aims to support live music in South Africa by finding and implementing ways to create a vibrant and viable live music circuit. It also aims to develop an interest in and appreciation of live music by showcasing music performances and conducting workshops at schools. For more information please visit our website, follow @ConcertsSA on Twitter at or like us on Facebook at
Events Listing
Music Cities Convention
Berlin – Rotes Rathaus
Tuesday 4th April – 10am to 6pm – €195 / €245
Address: Rathausstr. 15, 10178 Berlin, Germany

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