The African Music Development Programme (AMDP) is organising its inaugural “Impact” music conference on April 28-29 during the Harare International Festival of the Arts (Hifa).
The two-day conference, which will focus on the convergence of music and technology in Africa, “will feature talks, panel discussions and presentations by some of the most innovative and successful minds in the music and tech sector”, including speakers, Ghanaian M.anifest (of Hip Hop Phenomenon) and Nic Burger from Kleek Africa/Universal Records, among others.
AMDP is an initiative by the International Music Council and is running in nine African countries — Zimbabwe, Congo, Malawi, Mozambique, Cameroon, DRC, Tanzania, Kenya and Uganda — with support from the European Union and the Africa, Caribbean and Pacific group of states.
According to co-ordinator of AMDP, Charles Houdart, the conference targets entrepreneurs in the music industry who use digital tools towards the convergence of music and technology in Africa.
“Over two days, the conference will present discussions on a wide variety of topics around music and tech including content creation online, digital distribution, new revenue models in music, current and future state of the music industry and the role technology will play in shaping these,” Houdart said.
“If you are a talented, creative entrepreneur using digital tools to innovate in the music sector, you are invited to submit your project for consideration. Selected ideas will have a chance to pitch to a community of peers, music and creative business experts. They will receive one-on-one feedback, input and an opportunity to network with some of the best in the business such as music executives, creative businesses and tech gurus.”
By entrepreneur he said he was referring to anyone “coming up with innovative business ideas for the music industry, using technology as their main tool. It can be about music creation, distribution or music management, etc, but it has to offer something new to the African music industry. Using just a computer is not enough”.
It’s all about quality and innovation, Houdart said, adding that two African entrepreneurs will be flown into the country for the conference while two or three Zimbabwean entrepreneurs stand to win.
He said Impact, how-ever, doesn’t stand for anything in particular. “We are just aiming at making an impact on the music industry in Zimbabwe and Africa. So the name …”
Some of the speakers at the conference include Yoel Kenan (Africori), Phiona Okumu (Afripop Mag), Virgine Berger (Don’t Believe the Hype), Tehn Diamond (Zimbabwean musician), Emeline Wraith (Remote-Goat), Teju Ajani (YouTube SSA) and Nkiru Balonwu (Spinlet CEO).
Houdart has been director of the Alliance Française in Harare for five years until last year.
Attendance is by registration only which must be done by March 25. Those who wish to register can go to http://www.eventbrite.com/e/impact-music-conference-registration-15663726628 or visit https://www.facebook.com/amdpmusic