Manitoba Artists Take Center Stage at Industry Showcases in Mexico, Texas

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Manitoba Music Export

Manitoba Music Export Makes FIMPRO Debut, Returns to Massive SXSW Festival

Artists from Manitoba are taking centre stage at major international music events in February and March. Supported by Manitoba Music Export, artists will perform for industry tastemakers at FIMPRO Festival & Conference in Guadalajara, Mexico and the massive SXSW in Austin, Texas. All of this year's showcasing acts have built significant national and international activity recently, including label deals, overseas tours, major media coverage, awards recognition, and more. 

Manitoba Music will make its first foray in the Latin American music market at the 2024 edition of the FIMPRO at Canada House, in partnership with CIMA, Alberta Music, Music BC, and MusicOntario. 2024 JUNO Award-nominated pop powerhouse Begonia will showcase at C3 on February 28 along with a small cohort of artists from other provinces. FIMPRO is one of the most important music conferences in Mexico and Latin America featuring showcases and a conference component cultivating meetings with over 1,000 important industry players from across the Latin American countries.

Six acts from Manitoba will be heading to SXSW, North America’s largest music industry event, to build an international fanbase and connect with major industry players, March 11-16. The local lineup performing at Canada House, aka Swan Dive, on March 15 and 16, includes indie rock singer/songwriter Field Guide, folk-soul artist of Anishinaabe and settler heritage Ila Barker, dream pop poet/producer/multi-instrumentalist Lev Snowe, indie rock band Living Hour, art rap ensemble Super Duty Tough Work, and 2024 JUNO Award-nominated shoegaze artists Zoon. SXSW's music festival is a key stop for new, developing, and established artists looking to reach new audiences and make critical business connections. 

“We're excited to bring creativity and business together at FIMPRO and SXSW with some electrifying performances,” says Vanessa Kuzina, Manitoba Music’s executive director. “These pivotal export markets aren't just crucial for artists and music companies in Manitoba—they're the heart of innovation and collaboration. We’ve been developing a strong foundation at SXSW for nearly two decades. It’s thrilling to be expanding into Mexico for our first trip and building on the industry connections we’ve been making in recent years.”

Manitoba Music is fresh from last month’s successful trade mission to Los Angeles, which included six export-ready Manitoba-based artists and members of their teams making the trip for business activities including meetings and networking opportunities. The mission included an industry showcase for LA-based heavy-hitters, co-hosted by the Consulate General of Canada.

Artists from Manitoba will also showcase at the annual Folk Alliance International conference in Kansas City, Missouri, February 22-25. Soulful Franco-Manitoban and Red River Métis singer/songwriter Andrina Turenne and Ila Barker will perform at the International Indigenous Music Summit’s showcase, BIMIWIZH, while banjo maven Jaxon Haldane (with Yukon’s Gordie Tentrees) and singer/songwriter JP Hoe are heading down for official showcases.  

Many of this year’s showcasing artists have had their activities supported through Manitoba Music’s Market Access Fund, a grant focused on artists and music companies growing their business activities in export markets. 

Bringing Manitoba music to new markets and intensifying business activity in existing and new markets is a key component of Manitoba Music's trade and business development activities. Manitoba Music Export and Market Access are funded by the Province of Manitoba, FACTOR and the Government of Canada, and Manitoba Film & Music. Through events like these, Manitoba Music is able to increase the connection between our province’s music industry and the broader national and international industry, which is vital to the career advancement of Manitoba artists and industry professionals, and contributes to the growth and development of Manitoba’s economy.

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