Midem Wants ‘More Concerts’

The 51st Midem ended June 9 in Cannes, France. While organizers have been expanding the live side of the long-standing conference for years, director Alexandre Deniot announced that next year’s edition would see more concerts. 

Wyclef Jean
V. Desjardins
– Wyclef Jean
at Midem 2017

Midem 2017 saw the addition of a second stage facing the first, right on the seafront of Cannes’ Promenade de la Croisette.

This allowed for back-to-back concerts by acts such as Wyclef JeanAcid Arab and M.anifest, who also won this year’s Artist Accelerator program. The Ghanaian artist had come out on top of a total of 600 applicants and 11 finalists, all of which performed at Midem.

M.anifest also performed an acoustic showcase at the Midem Awards, during which Sarah Stennett (co-founder of First Access Entertainment), Ralph Peer II (Chair and CEO of Peermusic), Emmanuel de Buretel (founder and CEO of Because Music) and Andrew Fisher (Executive Chairman Shazam) were recognized.

More live music could be seen in the Palais des Festivals’ Grand Auditorium, June 8, where Leslie Mandoki and the Man Doki Soulmates took the stage.

Pollstar caught up with Midem’s live music director, Delphine Grospiron, who confirmed that she was already thinking about expanding the conference’s live offering in 2018, when Midem will take place June 5-8. Grospiron said she would look into collaborating with agents and festivals to bring more live music to Cannes.

She did not rule out including more venues along the Croisette, although she couldn’t confirm anything concrete just yet. The bulk of the conference is still dedicated to recorded music, and this year’s hot topics included streaming, the growth of which had most speakers optimistic about the industry’s future. Some predictions claimed that paid streaming subscriptions could grow by 250 million people and generate revenues of some euro 6.7 billion in 2020.

Conference speakers included Def Jam’s Steve Bartels, Linkin Park’s Mike Shinoda and Blink-182, who wrote a new song on stage to give the audience insight into the songwriting process.

The 51st Midem welcomed 4,400 delegates from more than 80 countries, thereby maintaining stable numbers compared with the previous year.

Besides an increase in its live offering, the conference’s organizers intend to include the audiovisual trade, premiering music videos and movie trailers.

Deniot: “Labels are increasingly using film and television programming to create buzz and fan engagement around artists. At future editions of Midem we will be providing world premiere screenings of some of these films.”