Guest article by Susanne Abbuehl
WOMEX has existed since 1994 and in my capacity as Vice President of the SUISA Foundation, I visited the most important World Music fair this year, which took place from 21 to 25 October in Tampere, Finland, for the first time. Of course, I tried to make the best possible use of the wide range of products on offer.
Besides the conferences, the panels, the stands, showcases and other concerts in the city, I was especially impressed by the sessions as they featured very prolific speakers and panelists. They were attended by a very diverse audience of students and experienced professionals and offered a great opportunity for networking and exchange. As an artist and educator, I was thrilled to hear colleagues and pioneers like Susanne Rosenberg (Royal College of Music, Stockholm), Kristiina Ilmonen (Sibelius Academy, Helsinki) as well as Joshua Dickson (Royal Conservatoire of Scotland) and Lena Willemark and to exchange ideas with them afterwards.
I also attended a concert in one of the most beautiful clubs I have ever been to, G Livelab, where friends from Norway (Trygve Seim and Mats Eilertsen) presented their project „Helsinki Songs“.
For the future, I hope that Swiss participation will increase in all WOMEX format categories such as showcases, stand exhibitors, conference speakers and panelists. This is a unique opportunity to make yourself known to an interested audience.