In the first week of 2022, the Slovenian Music Information Centre (SIGIC) hosted 18 young musicians from four countries, who banded together on the #CreaYouth – European Music Link project. The project is supported by European Commission via the #ErasmusPlus Programme.
CreaYouth – European Music Link brings together young musicians from four countries – France, Spain, N. Macedonia and Slovenia. Along with SIGIC from Ljubljana, Slovenia the partners of the project are: Topophone from Toulouse, France, Taller d’Art, Cultura i Creacio from Barcelona, Spain and Youth Council Next Generation from Skopje, N. Macedonia.
The project is aimed at international integration of young musicians involved in music genres that usually do not have a place within formal music school systems, and great emphasis is placed on learning about traditional music and musical instruments from the countries involved. The participants spend two months online, composing music and doing their first recordings, and later they meet in each of the involved countries where they finally bring their music to life. The project consists of four ensembles – each has a member from one of the four countries. After meeting in person, the band members mix up. The goal is for each participant to have the opportunity to play with all the other participants. The project includes the same number of boys and girls, mostly musicians with diverse backgrounds. In addition to creativity, CreaYouth is also focused on respecting and accepting differences and promoting integration.
The meeting in Ljubljana, which took place 2 -9 January 2022, was their first in-person session. The young musicians will meet three more times in Toulouse, Barcelona and Skopje by the end of 2022. In addition to daily rehearsals, the meeting in Ljubljana was enriched with numerous accompanying activities. The participants listened to Peter Baroš’s lecture on the music industry and Dominika Maša Kožar’s lecture on the use of social networks. Dominika also took the participants on a guided tour of the Kino Šiška concert hall where they were given the opportunity to see the foreground and background of a professional music institution. The rehearsals and musical gatherings took place in the immediate vicinity of Kino Šiška in the halls of Gig Music House. On a sunny January morning, an excellent alternative music tour, which started at Metelkova and ended at the ŠKUC Gallery, was organized by Gregor Bulc from the Urbana Vrana initiative. Besides, the participants visited the museum quarter of Metelkova City and saw the exhibition of the Slovene Ethnographic Museum where they paid special attention to the collection of folk musical instruments.
The final day of the project took place on the premises of the youth association Young Dragons in Črnuče district, also known as Basement, where participants had access to a small but technically fully equipped concert hall and a music studio. With the help of lighting technician Lira Jurkovič and sound engineer Luka Peršolja, two of the greatest local talents in the field of sound and lighting technology, the young musicians conjured a proper concert atmosphere, and all their performances were recorded.
SIGIC would like to thank all the participants and others mentioned above for their cooperation and assistance in carrying out the project. Special thanks go to the association Young Dragons, which also helped with the selection of participants and offered the possibility to do a proper concert recording on their premises.