Manitoba Music Heads to Germany

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Manitoba artists and music industry companies will head over the pond this week to do business at a major music industry conference. Popkomm, which runs October 8-10 in Berlin, attracts top-class international delegates to its innovative conference and trade show, and features exciting new talent in its popular music festival. This year, Manitoba will have its strongest presence yet with a delegation that includes some of the province’s leading industry professionals.

Making the trip to Berlin will be Brandon Friesen of 441 Studios and Arbor Records, Adam Hannibal of Balanced Records, Vince Fontaine of Rising Sun Productions, Ron Lamoureux and Dorina Morelli of and Roxie Music Group, and Manitoba Music’s new executive director, Sara Stasiuk.

Female-fronted rock outfit Domenica and Balanced’s expat electronic act DJ Brace are set to showcase at the Popkomm Festival, which features more than 400 solo artists, bands and DJs showcasing in over 25 official locations in Berlin. The showcases offer artists a unique opportunity to catch the attention of influential industry reps, including labels, distributors, and talent buyers.

While at Popkomm, the Manitoban companies will have the opportunity to meet face-to-face with existing international contacts and network with prospective partners to continue developing the global connections necessary for crucial worldwide market development.

”Our goal is to attract new European partners in licensing and touring opportunities,” says Fontaine, who also performs with Juno-winning rock outfit Eagle & Hawk, of his company’s first trip to Popkomm. “Already I've been getting lots of emails for meetings. Although I've been to Berlin on many occasions and Eagle & Hawk have toured Germany before, I'm really excited to return to Deutschland [with Rising Sun Productions].”

“Arbor Records has German distribution so this is a good time for me to sit down with our distributors and strategize marketing and touring plans for 2009,” says Friesen, who will be representing Domenica and Floor Thirteen in addition to Arbor Records’ roster.

For the second year in a row, innovative new media company has built an online 3D area for Popkomm participants and exhibitors, accessible through an icon on the main page of Popkomm’s website.

Popkomm is just one of the important European music industry conferences attracting Manitoba business. MUSEXPO Europe will have a Manitoba presence when it debuts in London, England October 27-29, including showcases by Domenica and Floor Thirteen. MIDEM, which has been well-attended by Manitoba companies in recent years, will take place January 18-21, 2009 in Cannes, France.

Europe has also seen an increase in performances by artists hailing from Manitoba in the last year. Recent tours from Comeback Kid, The Duhks, Twilight Hotel, The Wailin’ Jennys, Romi Mayes, High Five Drive, Sierra Noble, and The Perpetrators have hit the U.K., Ireland, Netherlands, Spain, and beyond.

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