The European cooperation project MP3 arises from the need to address the constraints linked to the professionalisation of musicians and to work for the sustainability of emerging music groups. Despite high artistic quality, a band’s project can fail if it does not understand and integrate into the sector’s economic, commercial and business ecosystem.
Faced with the complexity of today’s music industry, bands must adapt to new challenges. Musicians are often forced to deal with issues such as contracts, rights or invoicing on an individual basis, as well as to work without a break between one project and another due to the precarious nature of their professions, which often leads to social isolation. The result is often chaotic, irregular and precarious career paths that generate a lot of suffering in the workplace. The gap between the desire to make a living from music and the professional reality they have to face generates a higher risk of psychosocial problems.
The MP3 project aims to propose a pedagogical, theoretical and practical framework that allows all supervisors of musicians’ training to have a global approach to the knowledge that their students must acquire and encourage the development of their own skills, building on the strengths of each of the group members. All of which must take into account a digital environment that allows them to organise themselves and structure their working lives in such a way as to make a comfortable living from their art without feeling mistreated or frustrated.
MP3 aims to develop the skills of music groups in order for them to become spaces of social protection and to fight against the individualisation of artistic careers, to better understand the current changes in the sector and to identify risks. Therefore, collective work, joint-activity and an ecosystem based on artistic co-creation are essential to integrate and survive changes. However, throughout history, musicians have never been trained for this collective work beyond instrumental group practice.
All the changes observed require new skills in musicians and the teachers and pedagogues who train them:
MP3 also aims to create a European-wide community of pedagogues and training structures for professional music ensembles and other actors in the field of contemporary music, in order to raise awareness of the need to improve the training of musicians and to secure their long-term careers.
With the aim of increasing and capitalising on knowledge about these issues, four intellectual productions will be used to produce materials for four training-action sessions for music groups. These sessions will be mainly training courses for the teachers and educational staff who will run, evaluate and validate all the modules.
Thus, the MP3 project will make it possible to create:
Three outreach events will also be promoted to disseminate the results of this work at local, national and European level, in order to generate a variety of initiatives around these issues.
The driving forces behind the project are located in three European countries and are complementary in their practices, their professional realities and their sector. Moreover, three of the partners have already had one or more experiences in European projects: Music’Halle, LABA and Taller de Músics. Music’Halle and Taller de Músics also worked together on an Erasmus+ cooperation project on teacher training.
They are joined by LABA Bordeaux (France), which provides expertise on the main European cooperation projects for music and education, and liaises with the university sector (associate professors from the University of Bordeaux Montaigne and the Institute of Political Studies of Grenoble), as well as promoting musical entrepreneurship.
1. Psychosocial risks to musicians (IO1)
A study on the psychosocial risks to musicians is carried out which provides scientific articles written by specialised university researchers.
PARTNERS responsible for the production: Music’Halle (Toulouse).
2. Survival Guide for Groups (IO2)
RESULT: production of a video with interviews subtitled in English.
PARTNERS: Music’Halle (Toulouse) and Taller de Músics (Barcelona).
3. Teacher-musician repository 2.0 (IO3)
This is based on the observation that the current needs of the musical world are subject to recent and current developments. It is therefore necessary to adapt to these new challenges in order to create sustainable careers.
Musician-teachers have to adapt to the transformations in the sector. Music education must be rethought in light of these new challenges, in particular digital, managerial and collective work. Thus, it is inevitable and essential to rethink didactics in order to restructure educational methods and offer a music education that is aligned with the skills that professional musicians need in order to launch and sustain their professionalisation.
RESULT: Training modules for teachers are conducted.
PARTNERS: Locomotive Jazz Festival (Salento).
4. Polyvalent Portraits (IO4): tools on multi-activity in music and polyvalent portraits
Nowadays, musicians have to boost their cooperative skills in order to survive. This ‘poly-activity’ or multi-activity will be highlighted through “polyvalent portraits”, i.e. portraits of groups that bear witness to their collaborative and co-constructive work with various actors in the music industry.
OUTCOME: tools for the development of diversification and collaboration in the careers of professional groups. These tools will answer the question of how ensembles should develop their ecosystem to respond to today’s major challenges.
PARTNERS: LABA (Bordeaux) and Music’Halle (Toulouse).
1. The music ecosystem: mentoring for groups
DURATION: 5 days.
LOCATION: Taller de Músics (Barcelona).
WHO FOR: the 4 associated musical organisations present various actors from different professions in the music industry.
CONTENT: exchange of practices and tutorials between groups and different professions in today’s music industry, such as programmers, directors, producers, and labels.
2. Teaching collective practice 2.0
DURATION: 5 days.
LOCATION: Locomotive Jazz Festival (Salento).
WHO FOR: training for teacher-musicians and pedagogical coordinators.
CONTENT: based on the production of the teacher reference system 2.0, this training will enable new teaching tools to be passed on to teacher-musicians.
3. Prevention of risks related to the profession of musician.
DURATION: 5 days.
LOCATION: Music’Halle (Toulouse).
WHO FOR: the 3 selected groups from the 3 partner countries.
CONTENT: the video on the survival guide for group use will be screened and the study on the psychosocial risks of professional musicians shared. This training session will also involve an occupational psychosociologist specialising in this subject who will have participated in the drafting of the study (expected sociologist: Pascal Nicolas-Le Strat).
1. Music networks and prevention of psychosocial risks.
DURATION: several days.
ORGANISER/COORDINATOR: Music’Halle (Toulouse) in collaboration with LABA (Bordeaux).
GUESTS: the 3 selected groups from the 3 partner countries. National and local partners: COREPS (Comité Régional des Occupations en Occitanie), DRAC Occitanie, Occijazz, SMA (Syndicat des Musiques Actuelles), RCO (Chanit Occitanie Network), FEDELIMA, Octopus, CGT, among others.
CONTENT: collective work with current musical groups after the presentation of the study on the psychosocial risks of musicians and the projection of the video of the survival guide for group use.
2. Teacher 2.0 and new teaching practices.
DURATION: 1 day (March).
LOCATION: Taller de Músics (Barcelona).
GUESTS: teachers from music schools, conservatories and higher education centres, as well as musicians in the process of professionalisation.
CONTENT: presentation and discussion of the teacher-musician 2.0 standard.
3. Pluriactivity in today’s music industry
DURATION: 1 day
LOCATION: LABA (Bordeaux)
GUESTS: groups in the process of professionalisation or professionals. Musicians born out of professional studios. Support organisations for groups. Various players in today’s music industry.
CONTENT: presentation and discussion of the different tools produced for the development of diversification and collaboration in the careers of professional groups.
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