Belgian World Music Network Meeting

22 mei 2018
Belgian World Music Network Meeting

Are you a promotor, agent, musician, critic, student or other world music professional? Join us for the annual sector meeting featuring a plenary session, workshops and an evening concert programme.


This year the Belgian World Music Network Meeting celebrates the International Day of Cultural Diversity with a thematic programme on cultural diversity.

1pm: Registration

2pm: Plenary session with Etienne Bours (music journalist) & Mehdi Maréchal (Darna) – Worlds within: rethinking the concept of world music in cultural diverse society’s.

3.15pm: Break

4pm: Four parallel workshops

  1. Diversity in the rural programmation, with Catherine Blanjean (Ferme de la Dime) and Tineke Caudron (Kokopelli)
    Although we live in a more and more globalised world, people often seem only interested in what’s happening around the corner. That Belgium is getting a more diverse population, cannot be neglected, but this evolution is slower-going in the rural areas. Can you get local audiences interested in diverse music outside of the city?
  2. Belgium: promised land for world music?, with Sofyann Ben Youssef and Jan Hoozee (Zephyrus)
    Is Belgium the promised land for world music acts with international potential? Or is there too much potential compared to the size of the audience and the supporting structures? What are good examples of international success and what’s the reasons behind this success?
  3. Beat makers: death or future of world music?, with Seb Bassleer and David Elchardus
    Do they only care about grooves and beats? Or do they bring hidden musical pearls to the ears of a new audience? Are they aware of the original function of the music they are playing? One thing is certain: they make lots of young people dance to music they had never heard before. In which way are dj’s the future of world music or only killing the tradition?
  4. Diversity and education, with Tine Castelein (LUCA), Michel Schoonbroodt (Jeunesses Musicales) and Nicolas Hauzeur
    Matching education and diversity proves to be a difficult exercise. People of non-western origin are hardly present in the regular music schools. Introducing new instruments into the curriculum is hard, finding qualified teachers for such new courses is equally hard. Do cultural players like Jeunesses Musicales or Muziekpublique provide a valuable alternative? And what about the Lemmens institute with their recent openings towards alternative educational organisations?

5.15pm: Dinner

7pm: Concerts by Tamala, WÖR, Seyir, Marockin’ Brass & Rebel Up! (DJ set).

About the speakers

Mehdi Maréchal is the coordinator of Darna, the Flemish-Moroccan cultural centre. He holds a masters degree in social and political sciences from Ghent University and worked for 5 years as staff member of Demos, the Flemish knowledge centre on participation and democracy where he worked on cultural participation and interculturality. This followed on a period of 5 years when he was responsible for the Middle-East region at Oxfam-Belgium. He has written and lectured extensively on the topics of cultural diversity, participation and community practices.

Catherine Blanjean (CC Wasseige) andTineke Caudron (Kokopelli) will talk about why they started Kokopelli festival (Gullegem), how they work on diversity and how they reach their audience, both the things they think that work and the challenges they face.

Born in Tunis, Sofyann Ben Youssef is a Brussels-based music producer and musician with projects such as: Kel Assouf, Bargou 08 and AMMAR 808 & THE MAGHREB UNITED. He has also toured internationally as a musical director for contemporary dance shows and composes for movies. Also jury member for the Showcase WOMEX 2017. He will speak about the role of music production for a “future world” music.

Seb Bassleer is one of the founders of RebelUP!, a DJ/VJ collective that plays ethnic dance music from the global underground for colourful crowds worldwide.

David Elchardus is the founder of LOWUP, a Brussels based collective of club music aficionados, active as DJ’s, label, producers and promoters of contemporary electronic music mixed with influences from all over the world. David has been DJ’ing for over 20 years and also involved with sound design, editing for movies, plays, performances …

Tine Castelein (LUCA): Tine got her master’s diploma in music pedagogy in 2014. She has been working at LUCA School of Arts as assistant-researcher and started her PhD in 2014. She will tell us how LUCA involves the non-formal art-educational field (both concerning content and via internships) in their educational trajectories, linked to the diversity of target audiences and genres.

About the plenary session

We’ll open the discussion through an introductory lecture. World music has for long been a term labelling non-western music as diverse as sub-saharan, latin and east-asian musical genres. Not only has this broad categorisation never fully covered the immense musical diversity it attempts to describe, it has also become a separate musical “genre”, setting standards to the wide array of music produced in the non-western world. It has been associated roughly with “exotic” sounds to be discovered by western listeners and as such, to “exotic” sounds to be molded to Western ears. In our diverse societies of today, the “exotic” is no longer another realm (if it has ever been so at all). Ethnic and cultural diversity has become an inherent part of our society. So how does this affect the way we conceive the concept of “world music”? How can we adapt the concept to a more contemporary diverse audience? How does this impact the way “world music” is programmed, distributed and consumed and can this be a factor for social change? 

Location & Time

Muziekpublique, Square du Bastion 3, 1050 Brussels
Tuesday 22 May 2018, 13h




Please fill out this form to register. Attending the plenary session, workshops and concerts is free, but if you want to join us for the network dinner (17h30-19h), please bring €10 in cash, to be payed upon arrival.


Kunstenpunt and Belgian World Music Network with the support of Conseil de la Musique.