icTarget Group: Young Musicians

Geographical Reach: Europe wide

Project Duration: 2012 – 2014

Project Funder: Interreg 2 Seas

Project Manager: Ali Smith ali@superact.org.uk

Project Aim

A 3 year project that completed in the Summer of 2014, the main goal of IC Music (International Cooperation through Music) was to create long lasting sustainable cross-border relationships amongst 8 venues and their nominated musicians from England, Belgium and France across a 3 year period.

Created as a successor to the 4×4 Focus Passe-Partout project, IC Music was funded by Interreg2seas EU fund and enabled bands and soloists to gain experience of performing and conducting community music work in France, Belgium and the UK. The project started in 2011 and connected the lead music venues of De Kreun (BE), 4AD (BE), Les 4Écluses (FR) and Le Grand Mix (FR), above with five new partners from La Cave aux Poètes (FR), La Lune Des Pirates (FR), Exeter Phoenix (UK), Superact and Epic (UK).

A primary aim of IC Music was to give young, promising and ambitious bands stage opportunities in the IC Music venues and on some of the finest European showcase festivals. The IC Music network allowed the partners to exchange culturally specific knowledge in a fast moving industry.


Throughout the programme, over 54 concerts were held at  in France, Belgium or England, while there were 26 trans-European IC Music showcase performances held at the Great Escape (UK),  Les  Transmusicales de Rennes (FR), MaMa Festival FR, Sound & Vision (UK) and IC Music’s very own event TERMM in Amiens, France.

Another element of the IC Music project was to provide training for participating artists so that they could use their music in community settings. With Superact responsible for this output, artists received expert training and support from trainers with many years experience working in these settings. Opening many artists up to a whole new area of socially responsible work, this part of the project allowed artists to develop as musicians, economically independent professionals and as socially aware human beings.

The project has succeeded to reach a wide scale of beneficiaries as the IC Music community work resulted in more than 1,000 people benefiting from workshops including school students, people with special educational needs, people on probation and prisoners. In total there were four artist training camps, 49 community workshops with over 30 bands and soloists partaking.                    

With nine music venue partners from three border sharing countries (sea and land), IC Music was every inch a pioneering project. Across the three years over 20 intensive team exchanges also took place between partners across Europe while IC Music partners gave key note speeches, presentations and more to share the success of the project.

While IC Music may have come to an end there will be many lasting legacies from the project including a strong cross border venue network, lasting inter-European partnerships, a host of upskilled and socially aware musicians and a many positive lessons from which the European music industry can learn from.

Here a number of band testimonies highlight the many facets central to the success of IC Music :

“For Little Trouble Kids, it was well worth taking the road in France because of the shows they were able to play. A French agency has, in the meantime, jumped onto the band wagon and arranged a tour for the band in 2013. Little Trouble Kids now also has the chance to play at Trans Musicales, one of the largest festivals in France. The French press takes enormous interest in this show. Thanks to IC Music, Little Trouble Kids was therefore put under the spotlight.”

Francky, Little Trouble Kids’ Manager

“As a young band trying to build a career in the South West of England to be given the opportunity to play in leading venues inn France and Belgium, meet and connect with other bands in those countries was incredible. There were so many highlights for us bbut the main two were definitely playing at The Great Escape, and being voted Drowned In Sound’s band of the event!”

The Naturals

“At the party at the Great escape, we met a lot of different people that had been at the gig including bookers from festivals. We were buzzing. Our facebook went mad. We had messages from festivals, blogs, venues that had seen us.”

The Demerels

“We had the opportunity to travel to England for a week of training. It was a particularly intense experience, during which we shared and created music with a few prisoners, then with the special needs class in a Somerset college. It was a complete success, with strong emotions and encounters.”

The Name

“I really enjoyed training with Superact and experiencing what it’s like to take music into prisons, schools and hospitals. These are skills I will certainly use in my career.”

Zun Zun Egui

“We played at the Verne Prison in Weymouth, at a Residential Home in Taunton and at a Special Educational Needs School. We would like to thank the other bands and musicians present. Also to be thanked are Superact UK and the other organisers. We all in Zun Zun Egui feel positively and profoundly touched by the experience.”

Supported by the EAFRD funds, financing up to 50% of the expenses incurred, IC Music achieved it’s objectives within the period between 2011 and 2014.

To find out more about the project visit the IC Music website http://www.icmusic.eu/