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EFN Newsletter December 2023 #19

WELCOME AND SUMMARY

Welcome to the December end-of-2023 edition of this communication and outreach initiative of the EFN. Feel free to forward it to your friends and colleagues. Receiving this newsletter is open to anyone for free, here. Read to the end to find out how to submit content for future editions.


For all our Members and friends across Europe there is just one message at this time of year: We wish you a happy and peaceful 2024, full of music, dance, stories and the joy of your traditions.


This is what you'll find below in this last newsletter of the year:

🔸The first ever European Folk Day - a report of success

🔸EFN's incredibly busy year 2023 - a summary

🔸What's ahead in 2024? A first look at future plans

🔸New members for EFN

✍️ Do you want to participate? At the end of the newsletter you will find how you can contribute to future editions, whether you are an EFN member or not.

And of course EFN is always looking for new members and at the end of this newsletter there is a note about how and why to join, with links to the membership pages of the website and the application form.


Thanks for your attention, have a fruitful reading.



 

THE FIRST-EVER EUROPEAN FOLK DAY


What a great achievement for this first-ever annual event! Here below are just a few of the headline figures - and click HERE for a full report of the whole European Folk Day story in detail.

(And there'll be more - in the New Year we'll publish the results of the post-Folk Day survey and recommendations from participants for future years.)

🔸The European Folk Day saw participation across 32 European countries.

🔸The database and map on the European Folk Day website registered 248 events in 244 venues run by 259 organisers.

🔸Over 100 tracks were submitted to the Folk Day website’s Music Repository from over 28 countries, plus multi-national bands.

🔸Special events were created, including the inauguration of an entirely new Scottish Folk Day and a new festival in Malmesbury, England.

🔸Recognition and interest was registered from countries outside Europe – as far away as USA and New Zealand.

🔸26 radio stations, members of the European Broadcasting Union, produced special programmes on or around the European Folk Day.

🔸Press releases were issued in 26 European languages.

🔸EFN identified media coverage in 17 European nations and via 5 pan-European networks.

For a look back on full range of information about the European Folk Day visit www.europeanfolkday.eu



 

EFN IN 2023 - THE BUSIEST YEAR YET!


2023 started with the news that EFN had been voted funds from the MusicAIRE project to launch the European Folk Day. The EFN Team leapt into action immediately and spent the months from January to September creating communications and a website and making numerous new contacts. Alongside the onrush of Folk Day activity EFN continued to grow, welcoming new members and spreading the word about the importance of traditional arts across Europe. Highlights (among many other activities) included:

🔸Presentations at major music and cultural events such as the European Music Council annual forum in Budapest and the European Association of Conservatoires annual congress in The Hague.

🔸Participation in music network and showcase events such as VONK in Belgium, BabelMusicXP in France, Folkelarm in Norway and Showcase Scotland.

🔸Liaison with network partners and mutual members FAMDT in France and Zone Franche.

🔸At the invitation of WOMEX, running a seminar on the significance and use of traditional archives; and leading a seminar at Fira Mediterrania in Manresa, Catalonia.

🔸The annual two day EFN Conference in Manchester, in partnership with English Folk Expo, featuring discussions, panel sessions and presentations by artists and organisers on subjects including Folk Traditions in Ukraine (with Anastasiya Voytyuk, on the picture), Folk Arts Operating in Crisis (with the Armagh Rhymers) and Cultural Tourism (with Pablo Camino from Spain Is Music). For more details on the conference programme click HERE. A full report will be available in the new year.

🔸Increasing membership - to over 150 organisations and individuals from 32 European nations.

🔸Restructuring membership fees to reflect the varying size and capacity of members.


 

LOOKING AHEAD

Planning for the future, including development of the European Folk Day, is high on the EFN agenda, as is the organisation of the next two annual conferences in the autumn of 2024 (which is hoped to be in Kaustinen, Finland) and then 2025 (in Funchal, Madeira).

Recruiting new members is a permanent, ongoing priority for the network, whilst some 'back office' and administrative changes will be planned, helping to streamline the operation of the network and cope with the increasing membership and other commitments.

Fundraising will be one of the working priorities for the EFN Board in early 2024, together with partner members  including Denmark's Tempi, Latvia's Lauska and the Folk Arts Centre and Folk Festival in Kaustinen, Finland.

EFN also has plans to seek longer-term funding and will apply to the highly competitive Creative Europe Network fund in March.


 

WELCOME TO EFN'S NEW MEMBERS 

Three members from three European nations joined EFN recently.

🔸Musician and band manager Alina-Carmen Ciolca from Bucharest, Romania, joined EFN as a result of translating the European Folk Day press release into her own language. In her application she indicates several reasons for joining, including "partnering for mutual promotion, contributing with educational-oriented content" and "networking with relevant EFN members for potential collaboration."

🔸The Estonian Traditional Music Centre, perhaps best known for the Viljandi Folk Music Festival  (see the poster below)- one of the biggest festivals in the Baltic - are clear  that they can "contribute with ideas and actions based on 30 years of experience and insights of reviving folk music in Estonia" and they "hope to find partners and ideas for future collaborations." 

🔸Sending an equally positive message on joining EFN is Oslo's Riksscenen, the Norwegian Hub for Traditional Music and Dance, a venue presenting over 150 events each year and working with many others in the field of folk arts. Their motivation, they say, is wishing "to build networks, share, collaborate and hence contribute to promoting and developing folk music and dance internationally, as well as opening new doors to international promoters and markets for Norwegian performers."


 

HOW TO PARTICIPATE IN THIS NEWSLETTER Are you already a member? Then, remember that you can submit contents for this monthly newsletter. Email your content to efneditors@gmail.com, for these sections:

· News from EFN Members. Brief announcements – of around 100 words and a link.

· Featured artist. A profile with around 200 words, an embedded video and one link. Members are invited to submit profiles, considering solo and ensemble living or not living artists who have achieved lifelong artistic and technical quality or historical significance in the field of folk art from or developed in or settled in Europe. If you have any artists in mind that you'd like to feature, please ask in advance, just to be sure there is no other member already doing it.

And whether you are a member or not, you can participate in this section:

· Special sections. For instance, an interview with someone from an institution that is not a member or a thematic article by a guest writer or anything that can appear and be considered as interesting. This section can also host guest writers that are not members. If you'd like to share any content, contact us in advance to schedule it by emailing efneditors@gmail.com

Of course, self promotional articles lacking interest won't be accepted. In case of doubt, the EFN board will be consulted and will decide.


 

BECOMING A MEMBER? EFN membership is growing rapidly – why not join the network of traditional arts organisers and artists that stretches across Europe from the Irish Sea to the Baltic, the Mediterranean to the Black Sea? Find out more about membership and download an application form from www.europeanfolknetwork.com/membership.


 

DO YOU WANT TO SUPPORT THE EFN MORE? The EFN welcomes donations. We do a lot with little money. Imagine what we can do with a little more :) Let us know how much do you want to donate and we'll issue an invoice for your organization.

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