The EPIC project, co-funded by the Creative Europe programme of the EU, provided emerging musicians with skills and professional experience to complement their formal training and help them boost their career at the international level.
The vision of the EPIC project was to:
- Prove the value and impact of auditioned youth music ensembles for the professionalisation and internationalisation of careers
- Improve the training of emerging professional
- Foster the creation of new ensembles across Europe
Learn more about the project
EPIC tested and validated new approaches that could be implemented at a larger scale, to benefit the mobility of artists in Europe over a generation.
This project was supported by an action plan across five main lines:
1. A data collection, mapping the career path of former members of auditioned youth ensembles (orchestras and choirs)
2. An involvement of the EuroChoir as a laboratory for providing new skills through capacity building, active networking with stakeholders and with peers
3. The networking of existing and potential National Youth Choir organisers, to exchange best practices and cooperation opportunities. Specific ateliers gathering the singers themselves in an international context took place at Europa Cantat 2021 in Ljubljana, Slovenia.
4. Online training sessions for emerging artists
5. Dissemination of the results through events gathering relevant stakeholders.
Collective music-making is a powerful tool to bring people and nations together. As Europeans, we have a duty to foster the circulation of the next generation of artists in a sustainable, systemic way and the EPIC project is a first milestone along this promising path.
Webinars in the Frame OF THE EP:IC PROJECT
During the project, so far, we have been planning four webinars for developing the skills and knowledge of young choral professionals:
1. How to audition for a national & international (youth) choir, led by Josep Vila i Casañas.
2. Raise your voice: Partnering up with media for singing, led by Inari Tilli.
3. Choose and be chosen: how to get into the world of professional choirs, led by Laura Lopes, coordinator of TENSO Network, in conversation with Jennifer Reineke and Julia Reckendrees.
4. Business for Musicians: Managing Your Career, led by Gal Faganel
National Youth Choir Round Tables (Online)
These meetings were due to take place in person at the 2020 General Assembly of the European Choral Association and at Europa Cantat 2021. Due to the pandemic, this was not possible, but taking advantage of the opportunity, we instead held three online round tables for national youth choir managers on 29 June 2020, 19 January 2021 and 9 December 2021. The round tables were a chance for managers to share their practices, support the EPIC data collection and get all the latest information for national youth choirs for the Europa Cantat festival.
As part of the National Youth Choir stream of the project, we have also assembled a collection of different models of national youth choir, designed to help start new national youth choirs. There is also a dedicated national youth choir Facebook group for managers. If you are interested in these, do not hesitate to get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.
World Youth Choir Reception (Online)
This reception was due to take place in the frame of the festivities of the Beethoven Anniversary Year in Bonn. The World Youth Choir would have joined the National Youth Orchestra of Germany (BJO) for a programme with Beethoven’s 9th Symphony and the world première of the new piece “Nine” by Tan Dun. As this event was cancelled, we made the decision to hold an online reception instead, which took place on 16 September 2020, welcoming guests from all over the world to hear more about the choir and hosting a WYC session.
EuroChoir 2021 (Ljubljana, Slovenia)
From 11 to 22 July 2021, the EuroChoir 2021 session took place in Slovenia with an Irish twist under the direction of one of the emerging talents of the European scene, Yuval Weinberg, in collaboration with the award-winning conductor, Bernie Sherlock. For more details on this session, see the EuroChoir 2021 page. EuroChoir 2021 was organised by EPIC project partners Sing Ireland and JSKD with support from the European Choral Association.
EPIC at EUROPA CANTAT 2021 (Ljubljana, Slovenia)
The EPIC project contained several sessions and events at the Europa Cantat festival, which took place in Ljubljana 16-25 July 2021:
- Ateliers for national youth choir singers
- PULSE programme sessions (online):
- Beyond Talent – Career Development for Musicians
- Silicon Harmonies – What can choir leaders learn from high-tech startups
- Marketplace and presentation of first results of data collection on careers of past participants in auditioned music ensembles
The festival is organised by EPIC project partners JSKD, with support from the European Choral Association – Europa Cantat.
Event on Data Collection (Brussels, Belgium)
The data collection carried out as part of the EPIC project served as an example at this JMI event that looked to promote the practice of collecting data in the cultural sector and to demonstrate how you can use data collection in your advocacy and marketing. This event was organised by EPIC project partners Jeunesses Musicales International.
Conference on the Data Collection and Project at the ECA General Assembly 2021 (Lyon, France)
The last dissemination event in the EPIC project, this conference took place at the European Choral Association General Assembly in Lyon, France on 19 November 2021. All of the above activities were shared with a full audience from the choral sector, to spread the project results and outputs to choral and cultural leaders across Europe and beyond.
Data collection on careers of emerging musicians
A core part of the EPIC project was a data collection intended to map the career paths of former members of auditioned youth music ensembles, both choirs and orchestras, on an international and national/regional level. A survey was sent out in late 2020 and early 2021 to alumni of the World Youth Choir, the EuroChoir, and a network of managers of national and regional youth choirs and orchestras. The data was analysed by Alfred Jürgens (European Choral Association Project Manager) and Inês Moreira (World Youth Choir Manager) to create a resource to show the results and conclusions that can be drawn from the nearly 500 responses received.
Download the Data Analysis Report here!
The project is coordinated by the European Choral Association in partnership with:
- World Youth Choir foundation
- German Federal Youth Orchestra (Bundesjugendorchester)
- Schweizerische Föderation Europa Cantat (SFEC)
- EFNYO: European Federation of National Youth Orchestras
- EBU European Broadcasting Union for radio journalists
- Members of the European Choral Association
- Members of the JM International network