2011 IMC Five Music Rights Awards

0329wfom.jpgIn the setting of the 4th IMC World Forum on Music, the International Music Council staged the award-giving ceremony of the IMC Five Music Rights Awards on September 27th 2011. The IMC Five Music Rights Awards were once again given to programmes or projects that support in an exemplary way one or more of the five musical rights enunciated by the International Music Council. The Awards are a way to encourage IMC members and other organisations to give active support to the musical rights.

This Award is a symbolic and active recognition of the effort that is brought by each actor involved to the nominated projects and programmes.

The IMC Five Music Right Awards ceremony offered the stage for an inspiring exchange of knowledge and experience when the winning projects and programmes were presented to the audience. An overall winner and two second winners were honoured and three other projects received a special commendation.



f4d6ca1678The overall winner of the 2011 IMC Five Music Rights Award is Music. Play for Life.The Australian programme focuses in a unique and comprehensive manner on
promoting and enhancing school music education in a nation state. Consequently, every young person in Australia is its beneficiary. The programme hence supports the right for all to learn musical languages and skills, subsequently also, due to its content, the right for all to express themselves through music, and to have access to musical involvement through participation, listening, creation and information. Music. Play for Life is a programme of the Music Council of Australia and has cooperation from the Australian Music Association, the Australian Society for Music Education and the Australian Music Therapy Association.

The IMC Five Music Rights Awards 2011 were furthermore presented to Hearts in
Harmony in Barcelona and Teaching Cantonese Opera in Hong Kong


Hearts in Harmony in Barcelona aims at including people with various handicaps59a82a03eb

and disabilities in choral music making. It builds on two very important principles; that those with defined disabilities be integrated with musicians and other music making people who have not had their possible disabilities defined; and that those responsible as leaders and conductors for the integrated ensembles through specialised studies be prepared to create a natural unity of those making music. The programme therefore focuses more on abilities than disabilities. The project is hosted by the Secretariat de Corals infantils de Catalunya and was nominated by two IMC members: Moviment Coral Català – Mediterranean Office for Choral Music, and European Choral Association - Europa Cantat.



Teaching Cantonese Opera in Hong Kong Schools focuses on a form of music
which is unique, and which needs special attention and care as not to be forgotten. At the same time it provides young people with a demanding and indeed expressive musical language. This requires collaboration on a high level between, highly specialised performers, music educators, researchers, and students. In this way it benefits close to one million students and some 5000 teachers.
The programme stands out as a strong source of inspiration for those who have the courage to embark upon more complex and demanding musical journeys. The programme is hosted by the Hong Kong Institute of Education and was nominated by the International Society for Music Education (ISME).

In addition to the three Award winners, the following three projects received a
Special Commendation:

Espace Akto (African Academy of Choral Music, Democratic Republic of Congo) for the excellent opportunities it offers to a large population to making choral music and for continuously developing their artistic quality and enhance their choral ambitions.

The National Youth Orchestra of Iraq
for the inventive and forward-looking ways in which it enables boys and girls to participate in collective music making.

The Polifonia Network for Music (European Association of Conservatoires)
for the invaluable impact this programme has had and is still developing in Europe and beyond in the field of higher music education.

The ceremony was accompanied by music performances by the Flemish jazz trio
De Beren Gieren from Ghent – UNESCO City of Music, in collaboration with the
renowned Estonian jazz guitarist Jaak Sooäär.



IMC Five Music Rights Awards 2011

The 2nd edition of IMC Five Music Rights Awards will be presented in September 2011 on the occasion of the 3rd World Forum on Music in Tallinn, Estonia.

Welcome to download the explanatory note to the IMC Five Music Rights Awards 2011 in English and French and the nomination form in English and French here. Please return your nomination form to IMC before 30 September 2010.

Please note that IMC members only may make nominations.

2009 IMC Five Music Rights Awards

3wfm mraceremony

The IMC presented the inaugural IMC Five Music Rights Awards at a ceremony held October 18th 2009 on the occasion of the 3rd World Forum on Music in Tunis. In its report, the jury, which had been appointed by the Executive Board of the IMC to make recommendations, noted that "as a whole, the nominated projects/ programmes demonstrate how local and national authorities, institutions and organisations around the world work hard and creatively in order for people to celebrate music in accordance with the five rights defined by IMC. The jury has been impressed by the innovative character of most of the nominated projects/programmes, and indeed also by the diversity they represent with regard to objectives, strategies and target groups.

The overall winner of the first IMC Musical Rights Awards 2009 is Freemuse - The world forum on music & censorship (Denmark). This unique programme advocates freedom of expression for creators and performers of music. It documents and often publicises incidents of censorship and oppression, some of which may see musicians gaoled or even killed. It acts in a variety of ways to support musicians who experience limitations in their freedom to express themselves, in some cases by lobbying offending governments directly. It collaborates with other organisations working to implement the principles outlined in the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights, and with researchers and journalists to focus on issues of music censorship. Hence, the programme goes to the roots of the five musical rights defined by IMC. The nomination of Freemuse had been submitted by the Music Council of Australia.

The IMC Musical Rights Awards 2009 were furthermore presented to the Musical Programme of the Centro Andino para la Educación y la Cultura -CApEC (Argentina) and to the project Revival of Music Education in Afghanistan.

capec3 roger moreauThe CApEC programme targets groups of young people in Argentina who for various reasons do not easily have access to musical education and involvement, partly high-risk children. Over the more than 20 years of its existence, the programme has grown to encompass musical workshops, choral and instrumental ensembles, training of musical promoters, establishment of a music school, and organisation of competence building seminars for musical leaders, musicians and music educators. The programme thus builds, in a most systematic manner, the whole chain necessary to create an environment in which the five musical rights can be practiced in direct relation to an underprivileged group of young people. The programme had been nominated by the Argentinean Music Council.



anim2circe filmanimThe project Revival of Music Education in Afghanistan aims at bringing music education and involvement in music back into the Afghan society after the Taliban period and its virtual obliteration of music life in Afghanistan and continuous threat to all those who exposed themselves as musicians. In the aftermath of this period, and under political circumstances which are still highly fragile, an initiative has been taken by an expatriate Afghan musician to establish a music institute, as a first step towards a national programme for music education. It is remarkable as well as promising that, in this situation, the initiative has obtained support by the Afghan government and eventually from a number of other organisations. The institute will cater to the music-educational needs of gifted and motivated youth, especially supporting underprivileged children. The project is a spearhead in giving the Afghan people the right to again celebrate their own music without the risk of being punished. The project had been nominated by the Music Council of Australia.

In addition to the three Award winners, the following six projects received a Special Commendation:

Ø       Buskers for Buchabela. South Africa / Belgium
- nominated by the International Association of Music Information Centres

Ø       Library part of TRANSPOSITION.  Norway / Vietnam
- nominated by the International Association of Music Libraries

Ø       Recognising and improving the status of musicians and other performing artists in modern society through better laws.  Hungary - nominated by the International Federation of Musicians

Ø Coalition.  USA
- nominated by the US National Music Council

Ø       The Special Music Centre Resonaari.  Finland
- nominated by the Finnish Music Council

Ø       Wag the City.  Sweden
- nominated by Musik y Syd

Disover the winners in more detail: Read the dossier about the MUSICAL RIGHTS AWARDS published in the "Sounds in Europe" magazine of the European Music Council. Click here

The jury was composed by IMC Honorary Member Einar Solbu as chair, with Claire Goddard (European Union of Music Competitions for Youth), Gary Ingle (US National Music Council), Beata Schanda (IMC Executive Vice-President), and Blasko Smilevski (Jeunesses Musicales International) as members.

IMC President Richard Letts at the awards ceremony: "I am pleased that IMC is able to offer strong recognition and reward to programs and projects that give exemplary support to one or more of the musical rights. The Awards offer an outstanding opportunity to promote the five musical rights and to demonstrate IMC's commitment to them. By presenting these exemplary programs and projects, we hope to encourage IMC members and other organisations to join in and give active support to the musical rights."



Sustainable Futures for Music Cultures

Towards an ecology of musical diversity

Sustainable futures for music cultures is a five-year, five-million dollar project that investigates key factors in musical sustainability, with the purpose of enabling communities across the world to forge musical futures on their own terms.

With the developments in migration, travel, and technology over the past fifty years, musical diversity has simultaneously come to our ears and under threat. Almost anywhere in the world, music from myriad backgrounds is accessible live or through recordings. But at the same time, many ‘small musics’ are in danger.

We live in an era when much music—in the words of the leading ethnomusicologist Tony Seeger—is actively ‘being disappeared’ with globalisation. These changes go well beyond the dynamics of musical styles and genres emerging and disappearing organically as a result of changes in society. This phenomenon is now causing a substantial reduction in the diversity of music across the world.

A better understanding of the ‘ecosystems’ of music cultures can help to address this situation. In all cultures, the interplay between a large number of musical and non-musical factors is decisive for the longevity of music genres. This includes the relation to communities, systems of transmission, dissemination through media and industry, as well as more intangible factors such as underlying values and prestige.

By conducting nine detailed case studies across the spectrum from ‘endangered’ to ‘flourishing’ music cultures on four different continents, Sustainable futures seeks to identify mechanisms that affect the longevity of specific music styles and genres.

Built on a partnership between the International Music Council, the World Music & Dance Centre, the Music Council of Australia and six universities, Sustainable futures aims to develop a freely accessible, user-friendly web-based resource that will enable communities–by themselves or in partnerships–to preserve, safeguard or develop the music they value, in the way they value it.

Click here to go to the project website

IMC Music Rights Awards

Launched in 2009, the IMC Music Rights Awards are given to programs or projects that support in an exemplary way one or more of the Five Music Rights enunciated by the Council:

5Music Rights


The Awards were launched by IMC in 2009 to voice strongly its determination in advancing these five rights. The inaugural IMC Music Rights Awards ceremony took place October 18, 2009 during the 3rd IMC World Forum on Music in Tunis. More on the 2009 Awards


Six projects were recognised at the award-giving ceremony which took place on the opening night of the 4th IMC World Forum on Music, September 27, 2011. Find out about the prize winners here.


The 3rd edition of the IMC Music Rights Awards was presented again in November 2013 in occasion of the 5th World Forum on Music in Brisbane. Find out more about the prize winners here. About the ceremony, here


The 4th edition of the IMC Music Rights Awards was presented again in November 2015 in occasion of the 36th IMC General Assembly held in the framework of Visa for Music in Rabat, Morocco. Find out more about the prize winners here.


The European Forum on Music and IMC General Assembly offered the perfect setting for the 5th edition of the IMC Music Rights Awards which were presented on June 10th 2017. Find out more about prize winners here.


The 6th edition of the IMC Music Rights Award was presented at the World Forum on Music during the celebrations for the IMC 70th Anniversary in Paris. The award was presented on September 28. Find out more about prize winner here.

Development and Music

aplicacoes2IMC Music Sector Development Program. This program will seek to assist developing countries in developing their music sectors. The nature of the development will be decided by the developing countries after an extended process of analysis and discussion.

  • Sustainable futures for music traditions: In music, one of the great concerns is the survival and revitalisation of traditional musics. The IMC has entered into a partnership to discover and describe projects across the world that have been successful in returning traditional musics to everyday life. The IMC is the senior non-academic partner in this five-year project, led by the Queensland Conservatorium Research Centre, Brisbane, with seven universities on five continents, the Music Council of Australia, and funding from the Australian Research Council. Read more
  • Taking into account the specific needs of potential beneficiaries, UNESCO and the International Music Council launched a pilot project training module in East Africa with a view to creating capacities to capture international funding for music projects. This project was carried out under UNESCO’s Global Alliance for Cultural Diversity with the financial support of the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation. Read more
  • Support is being sought for other programs in Africa, Afghanistan and the South Pacific.

Capacity-building for members. The IMC supports the development of its member organisations in various ways, mostly upon request but also through workshops and provision of information.

Regional development. The IMC is committed to the formation of regional councils, with a more direct understanding of regional issues, as chapters of the organisation. A highly successful regional council is operating in Europe, one is in the process of being established in Africa, and IMC is supporting the formal incorporation of the Council of the Three Americas, covering north, central and south America. Early steps have been taken to establish a council in east and south-east Asia, and it is anticipated that the Arab Music Council will consolidate around the conference in Tunisia in 2009.


MSDP logo courtesy of



IMC advocacy is on behalf of key issues in music and is directed to intergovernmental and international organisations, and to national governments via IMC national members. Some advocacy is carried out in alliance with other international organisations.

Current or anticipated advocacy issues include:

  • Ratification by UNESCO member countries of the UNESCO Conventions for the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions, and for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage, and implementation of recommendations such as those for the development of cultural diversity within national borders,  support to cultural development in developing countries and rescue of threatened traditional musics. Advocacy for the former Convention includes collaboration with the International Network for Cultural Diversity and other NGOs.
  • Promotion to national education and culture ministries of the Road Map for Arts Education, formulated at a UNESCO conference in Lisbon in 2006.  Collaborators include the International Society for Music Education. Promotion would take place mainly through IMC National Music Councils and member educational organisations.
  • Defence of the right to freedom of expression in music, the first of the five musical rights at the base of IMC activities. In collaboration with the Copenhagen-based Freemuse human rights organisation.
  • Promotion of Fair Music, in support of an initiative by the Music Information Centre of Austria. Fair Music would, among other things, seek a more fair distribution of royalty income between artists and those who have used their copyright.
  • Statement on Authors’ and Performers’ Rights

African Music Rostrum

The Rostrum of African Music was created in 1975 to support and highlight the music of the African continent through radio broadcasts, taking into account not only the diverse and rich music traditions of the continent but also the various popular and art music styles which were inspired by these traditions.


- To promote, via broadcasting stations and similar organizations, authentic and valuable examples of different styles of traditional and contemporary music of Africa

- To promote the production, dissemination and exchange of musics from the region through radio stations and other media such as television and the internet, but also through live performances

- To establish and develop better cooperation among African broadcasters in order to achieve a broader dissemination of African music.

- To facilitate music education in the region by providing specific examples of African music, as an educational tool to learn about the musics in the region

- To contribute to a greater valorization of the rich heritage and musical traditions by raising awareness and building knowledge among the public, especially youth

- To develop new strategies for the programming and dissemination of African music

- To recognize and encourage young talents.

The following Rostra were held over the years:

1 1970  May 25 - 27  Paris
2 1972 July 5 - 7 Venice, Italy
3 1975 October 21 - 25 Accra, Ghana
4 1979 February 3 - 5 Dakar, Senegal
5 1981 Jan 31 - Feb 1 Tunis, Tunisia
6 1983 January 21 - 23 Algiers, Algeria
7 1985 January 26 - 27 Brazzaville, Congo
8 1997 February 2 - 7 Dakar, Senegal and Nairobi, Kenya
1990 February 19 - 21    Dakar, Senegal
10  2010 November 17-20 Douala, Cameroon
11  2014 August 2-8 Brazzaville, Congo


Since 2010, IMC has been working on the revitalisation of this regional Rostrum, in close cooperation with its regional group, the African Music Council. The 10th African Music Rostrum under a new formula was held in Douala, Cameroon, on November 17-20, 2010.

In the framework of the African Music Development Programme, the 11th edition of the African Music Rostrum was held in Brazzaville, Congo, on August 2-8, 2014.



Asian Music Rostrum (ASMR)

Asian Music Rostrum (ASMR)

The purpose of the ASMR is to make known authentic and valuable example of traditional, classical and modern music representing the different families and cultures of Asia and Oceania through the intermediary of radio organisations.

Depending on the regional and local situation, the ASMR is organized by:

  • the National Music Committee and National Broadcasting Organisation of the host country
  • the Asian Regional Secretariat of IMC
  • Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU)
  • IMC secretariat


It also benefits from the cooperation of the International Council for Traditional Music and the International Institute for Comparative Music Studies and Documentation (Berlin).

The items are presented in one or more of the following categories:

  1. traditional music
  2. traditional folk music
  3. modernized traditional music
  4. art music which makes use of traditional forms or techniques


A selection committee, composed of delegates from broadcasting organisations, listens to musical items in the four above-mentioned categories and selects the most outstanding works presented by participating broadcasters to be offered to members of the Asian Broadcasting Union and of the European Broadcasting Union.

The following Rostra were held over the years:

1. 1969 May 27 - 29 Paris
2. 1971 April 28 - 30 Paris
3. 1973 October 17 - 21 Alma-Ata, USSR
4. 1976 August 22 - 26 Manila, Philippines
5. 1979 December 1 - 5 Baghdad, Iraq
6. 1983 October 9 - 12 Pyongyang, PDR of Korea
7. 1985 September 8 - 9 Ulan Bator, Mongolia
8. 1990 December 7 - 10 Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
9. 1993 March 19-20 Bombay, India


The last Asian Music Rostrum in 1993 was organized jointly by the IMC, its Asian Regional Secretariat (Arvind Parikh) and All India Radio. The session was chaired by Prof. Trân Van Khê, eminent Vietnamese performer and musicologist, Member of Honour of IMC.

The Rostrum was followed by a Symposium on the presentation of music on radio in Asia, inaugurated by the Director General of All India Radio, Shashikant Kapoor, with keynote addresses by Trân Van Khê (Vietnam), Richard Letts (Australia) and P.V. Krishnamoorty (India).

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