Tag Archives: womex

WOMEX 2016 Opened Yesterday in Santiago de Compostela with a Tribute to Spanish Music

Carmen Paris at WOMEX 2016 opening ceremony - Photo by Van Nieuwland
Carmen Paris at WOMEX 2016 opening ceremony – Photo by Van Nieuwland

World music expo, WOMEX, opened yesterday in Santiago de Compostela, Spain. The trade fair this year includes 291 booths from companies around the world.

The official opening ceremony took place at the filled-to-capacity Auditorio de Galicia. The concert revolved around the theme of ‘Iberians – Music Tapas Menu’, featuring musical appetizers from around Spain’s regions, including Aragon, Catalonia, the Basque Country and the host region Galicia. The performances were directed by Galician musician and producer Pedro Pascual.

Five acts were featured: Carmen París (Aragon), Cuarteto Caramuxo (Galicia), Kepa Junkera (Basque Country), Maria Arnal & Marcel Bagés (Catalonia), and Talabarte (Galicia).

The recently re-elected President of Galicia, Alberto Núñez Feijóo said: “Hosting WOMEX for the second time in three years is a privilege that only the most distinguished cities can enjoy, another opportunity for them to introduce themselves to Europe and to let Europe and the world likewise introduce themselves in those cities“.

The musical discoveries of the Iberian Peninsula, including Galicia, will continue with the Atlantic Connections stage as a part of the WOMEX Showcase Festival running throughout the next three nights in the ancient town of Santiago de Compostela. Overall, the concert program includes more than 60 acts comprising nearly 300 performing artists on 7 stages from 43 countries, as well as the WOMEX Film Nights and daytime screenings.

The WOMEX Awards will take place on Sunday, with Calypso Rose receiving the Artist Award.

More at www.womex.com


La Negra, Radio Cos and Niño de Elche to Perform at WOMEX

Radio Cos
Radio Cos

Spanish artists La Negra, Radio Cos y Niño de Elche are set to perform at world music showcase WOMEX in Santiago de Compostela (Spain), October 19-23. The three acts are presented by Sounds From Spain, a platform designed to promote Spanish music overseas.

About the artists

Flamenco artist Amparo Velasco, known as La Negra, has worked with artists such as José Mercé and Vicente Amigo. She combines jazz, African rhythms and Latin beats with flamenco roots. She recently released an album titled Colore (Colors).

Vocalists and percussionists Xurxo Fernandes and Quique Peón are Radio Cos, a well-known band from Galicia. They reconfigure Galician traditional music, fusing sounds of the countryside with other elements. They wll be joined by Pedro Lamas on bagpipe and soprano sax, Nikolay Velikov on violin and Xan Pampín on accordion.

Francisco Contreras, known as Niño de Elche, is an unconventional singer and multidisciplinary artist. His compositions combine flamenco vocals and guitar with poetry, improvisation, rock and electronics, among others. His new album is titled Voces del Extremo, (Voices of the Far).

La Negra and Radio Cos will play at the official WOMEX stage at Plaza de la Quintana. La Negra is scheduled for October 21 at 21:00. Radio Cos will perform on and October 22 at 21:45.

Meanwhile, Niño de Elche will appear at Atlantic Stage (Teatro Principal) on October 20 at 22:30, sharing the bill with Nakany Kanté, Narf & Timbila Muzimba, Xabier Diaz and Xarnege.


WOMEX 2017 to Be Held in Poland

WOMEX organizers announced today that the World Music Expo will be held in Katowice, in the region of Silesia, in southern Poland. The annual conference is the largest gathering of world music professionals and will take place October 25–29, 2017.

Silesia is a region with its very specific cultural heritage and is located in the heart of Central and Eastern Europe, neighboring the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Three international airports are near Katowice: Katowice Pyrzowice, Krakow, and Ostrava. According to WOMEX organizers, moderate costs in Katowice promise a pleasant stay for WOMEX delegates.

We are delighted to bring WOMEX into this European region and find new friends there. We believe WOMEX will once again add its part to a positive movement over there: The city of Katowice is an upcoming creative location, recently undergoing a post-industrial flowering where the city becomes a green, cultural hub,” says Alexander Walter, WOMEX Director

Katowice is the only Central European city bearing the title of the UNESCO City of Music. Katowice has recently opened a remarkable Cultural Zone with a highly-acclaimed concert hall, the NOSPR that will also be one of the main venues for WOMEX 2017, as well as state-of-the-art International Congress Centre (ICC). Two popular and critically acclaimed festivals are part of the city’s cultural landscape.

Throughout Poland cultural and world music festivals; folk, jazz, Jewish culture are celebrated and the Polish presence at WOMEX has been growing steadily in the last years. The local partner for WOMEX 2017 in Katowice will be the Polish ICP Group and its subdivision “Poland Concept.” WOMEX 2017 will be produced with the support of the City of Katowice.

More about WOMEX: www.womex.com


offWOMEX Showcases Confirmed

Anelis Assumpção - Photo by Renato Stockler
Anelis Assumpção – Photo by Renato Stockler

WOMEX 2016 organizers confirmed the offWOMEX showcase program which will bring artists from Canada, Mexico, Chad, Puerto Rico, Brazil, Japan and Portugal. WOMEX 2016 will take place in Santiago de Compostela, Spain during October 19 – 23.

List of offWOMEX artists at WOMEX 16:

Anelis Assumpção (Brazil)

Boogat (Canada/Mexico)
Latin Quebecois rapper, writer, producer.

H’Sao (Chad/Canada)
band of brothers merging global influences into Chadian roots.

iLe (Puerto Rico)
Calle 13’s little sister vintage Latin styles with post-nostalgic sheen.

Les Tireux d’Roches (Canada)
Québécois story-tellers.

Maltese Rock (Japan)
Avant-garde activists furthering positive social change with gypsy-punk-rock-enka-tinged Okinawan minyo.

Nomade Orquestra (Brazil)
Sao Paolo big-band’s widescreen mergings of Afro-beat, Ethio-jazz, reggae, hip-hop and psychedelic funk.

Quique Escamilla (Mexico/Canada)
Toronto-based Mexican singer who blends huapango and ranchera with country-and-reggae.

Reyfado Lisboa (Portugal)
Ensemble of young fado artists.


Calypso Rose Recipient of WOMEX 2016

Calypso Rose by Richard Holder
Calypso Rose – Photo by Richard Holder

The WOMEX 2016 Artist Award will go to Calypso Rose, the acclaimed singer from Trinidad & Tobago and composer of numerous hit calypsos. Calypso Rose will receiving the prestigious award in Santiago de Compostela (Spain) on October 23, 2016. The 76 year-old Calypso star will perform together with members of Kobo Town.

Calypso Rose started her remarkable career in the 1950s. Rose first performed at WOMEX in 2006, where she was scheduled to showcase as part of the Calypso@Dirty Jim’s all-star ensemble, but the band could not appear due to travel complications, so Calypso Rose spontaneously took on the show, accompanied only by piano, and had a great response from the adience.

A singer-songwriter and activist, Calypso Rose has received numerous awards and titles and won all relevant competitions. It was for her that the ‘Calypso King’ competition was changed to the gender-neutral ‘Calypso Monarch’.

I am honored to receive the prestigious WOMEX Artist Award,” sayd Calypso Rose about the WOMEX award. “Although I have received many, many awards from governments, institutions etc. in my life, I still feel very honoured to receive this specific award, which is a global one. It is a special recognition, also for my fans all over the world. They will be happy to know I’m receiving this award. For that I thank you.”

Two of her most recent recordings are Far From Home and Queen Of Trinidad.


WOMEX 2016 Announces First Set of Showcases

Maia Barouh - Photo by Audric Larose
Maia Barouh – Photo by Audric Larose

World Music Expo, WOMEX, announced this morning the first set of artists that will showcase at WOMEX 2016 October in Santiago de Compostela, Spain. The high profile gathering of world music industry professionals will take place October 19 – 23, 2016.

The 23 acts announced features musicians from 28 countries, starting with the musical researchers of Radio Cos from the host region Galicia (Spain), expand to global music talent from five continents who will make WOMEX the platform for their international breakthrough. The line-up also includes some well-known artists such as Brazilian Bixiga 70 or Noura Mint Seymali from Mauritania who will be presenting their latest setup to the expected 2,500 delegates.

The 23 WOMEX Showcase acts announced so far are:

Bargou 08 (Tunisia/Belgium)
Bixiga 70 (Brazil)
Black String (South Korea)
C4 Trio (Venezuela)
Delgres (Guadeloupe/France)
Dudu Tassa & The Kuwaitis (Israel)
Gisela João (Portugal)
Gulzoda (Uzbekistan)
Maïa Barouh (Japan/UK)
New York Gypsy All Stars (Macedonia/Turkey/Greece/USA)
Noura Mint Seymali (Mauritania)
Okra Playground (Finland)
Oligarkh (Russia)
Ponk (Czech Republic)
Puerto Candelaria (Colombia)
Radio Cos (Spain)
The East Pointers (Canada)
Throes + The Shine (Angola/Portugal)
Trad.Attack! (Estonia)
Trio Da Kali (Mali)
Tulegur (China)
United Vibrations (UK)
Vassvik (Norway)

More showcase artists, as well as additional film and conference program will be announced in the following weeks.

more at http://www.womex.com


First WOMEX 2016 Conference Sessions Revealed

The World Music Expo, WOMEX, has publicized the first jury-selected conferences for its 2016 edition. The largest professional gathering of its kind, WOMEX will take place in Santiago de Compostela, Spain, October 19 – 23, 2016 at the Cidade da Cultura (City of Culture). The showcase program will be announced over the next month.

The WOMEX conference program includes an overview of popular music styles from around the world. For instance, the indie scene from the Arab world is explored in a session devised by Basem Abuarab, booking manager for Almoharek and Eka3 label (who presented Tamer Abu Gazadeh at WOMEX 15) with Maan Abu Taleb, editor of the influential Arabic music magazine Ma3azef.com and Sarah El Miniawy, music PR and management at Simsara.

Sarah el Miniawy
Sarah el Miniawy

There will also be a session chaired by music and live event producer Danny Kapilian to discuss “integrating world music in pop music festivals and concerts”.

Spotify, represented by engineering lead Jonathan Marmor, will host an interactive “Un-Conference” – an open workshop format, in which attending delegates and other players from the digital sector will create concrete solutions to pressing challenges.

Scott Cohen, founder of The Orchard, will take part on a panel put together by Patrick Lee-Thorp of Templit Entertainment / Songwrights on the future for global music albums. Lee-Thorp provides additional details: “This WOMEX panel will look at the possible scenarios of how producers will deal with the challenge creating revenue in the streaming age. This is now an urgent question for the world music business“.

Another focus of this year’s conference will be music education, with sessions on education for deaf children through music with the Muse Seek Project, and “Between Identity and Diversity” that explores music education and migration (led by Rotterdam’s Codarts University and Mannheim’s Popakademie Baden-Württemberg represented by Connie de Jongh and Udo Dahmen respectively. Dahmen says: “It is a perfect situation that WOMEX offers a place for our panel, which has in mind the network between educational institutions within the global music scene.”

Jung-Hun Lee
Jung-Hun Lee

Jung-Hun Lee (Jazz in Seoul) will chair a session on how to connect to the music market in Asia together with Kaushik Dutta (Kolkata International Music Festival) and Patrick de Groote (Sfinks Mixed festival).

Sonya Mazumdar, founder and director of EarthSync from India, will chair a session with Daniel Brown (Freemuse) on “unspoken censorship” and how artists and media may counter it.

More information at www.womex.com

Headline photo: Sonya Mazumdar, EarthSync


WOMEX Call For Proposals for 2016 Edition

World Music Expo (WOMEX) is seeking proposals for the 2016 edition, including the Showcase Festival, the DJ Summit, the Conference and Film programs. WOMEX 2016 will take place in Santiago de Compostela, Spain, October 19-23, 2016. The deadline to submit a proposal is Friday, April 15, 2016.

The final program selection is made by an international and independent jury.

The jury for WOMEX 2016:


• Consuelo Arbelaez (Colombia/Italy)
• Jens Cording (Germany)


• Alexandra Archetti Stølen (Argentina/Norway)
• Vítor Belho (Spain)
• Oliver Carruthers (UK)
• Rıza Okcu (Turkey)
• Jun-Lin Yeoh (Malaysia)

More details at www.womex.com

Photo credit: WOMEX 2015, Pipers at the Opening – Photo by Yannis Psathas


World Music Conference WOMEX 2014 to Be Held in Santiago de Compostela, Spain

International world music conference and showcase WOMEX announced today that the 2014 event will be held in Santiago de Compostela (Galicia, Spain) during October 22-26, 2014.

This is the second time in its European travel itinerary, that the international music networking meeting WOMEX will be welcomed to a Spanish city. Santiago is the journey’s end for millions of devout pilgrims via the Camino de Santiago (“Way of St. James”) since the 9th century and the legendary city of Santiago de Compostela will also be WOMEX’s destination.

Declared a UNESCO World Heritage city for the extraordinary and well-preserved architecture of its beautiful old town, Santiago de Compostela has been an important meeting place of faith, thinking and cultural exchange since the Middle Ages, reflected also by its prestigious university founded in the 15th century.

Situated in the western extreme of Southern Europe, Santiago de Compostela is the capital of Galicia, renowned for its lush green hills and wild coastline lapped by the Atlantic Ocean; its ancient traditions; its widely-spoken native language, Galician; its extraordinary cuisine – and, of course, its Celtic music.

Some of the best known Spanish artists from the Galician region include piper Carlos Núñez, Milladoiro, Luar Na Lubre, Doa, Susana Seivane, etc. Artists from Galicia who have showcased their talent at WOMEX in the past few years include Berroguetto, Mercedes Péon, Cristina Pato, Mutenrohi, Narf, Xosé Manuel Budiño and Marful.

The bid to host WOMEX 14 in Santiago de Compostela was led by event agency Nordesía; with the support of Xunta de Galicia, the government of the region, through AGADIC and the Foundation of the City of Culture; and the city of Santiago de Compostela through its Department of Culture and Tourism. In addition, cultural agents, gastronomic associations, and, of course, artists from Galicia and Spain are planning to rally together to make the 20th edition of WOMEX a truly exceptional experience.

Daniela Teuber, WOMEX Director of Production, states: “We’re are very much looking forward to holding WOMEX in Santiago de Compostela in Spain in 2014. The complex requirements of our multifarious event and its 2500 delegates are matched perfectly in this picturesque, compact and hospitable city, which has welcomed pilgrims, travelers and guests from abroad for many centuries.”

Vítor Belho, Director of Strategy and Creative Production at Nordesía, adds: “To all WOMEXicans: from the end of Santiago’s Pilgrim’s Way and the Atlantic Land’s End, we are waiting for you to enjoy an experiential journey full of ancestral heritage, powerful nature, flavorful cuisine, great musical diversity, and varied cultural connections. Don’t miss it!

The WOMEX daytime venue will be the spectacular new ensemble Cidade da Cultura (City of Culture), the masterpiece of Peter Eisenmann. The Showcase Festival will take place in selected venues throughout the old town and on the plazas around the cathedral. Small-scale and easy to navigate, Santiago de Compostela offers a great variety of sights, hotels, restaurants and bars within walking distance.

All WOMEX 12 Thessaloniki delegates and press are invited to the WOMEX 14 Santiago de Compostela presentation on Friday, 19 October at 17:00 in Room C, Pavilion 8. You can also meet the WOMEX 14 local partners at stand number 5.50 in Pavilion 5.

In 2012 WOMEX will be taking place in Southeastern Europe for the first time – in Thessaloniki, Greece, from Wednesday, 17 October to Sunday, 21 October 2012.

Cardiff in Wales, United Kingdom, will be hosting WOMEX next year, from Wednesday, 23 October to Sunday, 27 October 2013. Meet the WOMEX 13 Cardiff partners, Cerdd Cymru : Music Wales, at WOMEX in Thessaloniki at stand number 6.125-6.126 in Pavilion 6.

More information at:



WOMEX 2008 Provided World Music Showcases for All Tastes

Väsen and Mike Marshall
Väsen and Mike Marshall – Photo by Angel Romero


The showcase selection this year at WOMEX was extensive and varied, representing many musical traditions of the world. The numerous concerts included the official WOMEX showcases, OffWOMEX performances and private concerts. There several themes, including Flamenco, Brazilian, Galician and much more.

Corsican group A Filetta, who played the first night, impressed some of the delegates, including Link TV’s Michal Shapiro, who said: “I loved A Filetta. They are very special. Every night at WOMEX there is a surprise from an artist who moves you in an unexpected way. This year, for the first night it was A Filetta. It was like watching artisans building a cathedral.”

I chose to attend some of the daytime showcases, which were held at the at the Sevilla Convention Center (FIBES) and the nighttime showcases at the Lope de Vega Theater in downtown Sevilla. Unfortunately, I couldn’t make it to the nighttime showcases that took place in the large tents at the nearby Plaza de España. At least three showcases run simultaneously at three separate venues and, in order to see them all, you have to watch 5 or 10 minutes of each concert and then run to the next.

Many delegates were impressed by Cimarron (Colombia) and Bassekou Kouyate & Ngoni Ba (Mali). Of all the showcases I saw, the ones that a lasting effect on me the most were the outstanding [wiki:bluegrass]/Swedish folk collaboration of American mandolinist Mike Marshall with Swedish folk group Väsen (normally, American violinist Darol Anger is also part of the line-up, but he suffered a wrist injury and could not make it), Argentine band Astillero’s new tango, Chinese virtuos Liu Fang and Egypt’s lively Bedouin Jerry Can Band.


Bedouin Jerry Can Band
Bedouin Jerry Can Band – Photo by Angel Romero


At the Teatro Lope de Vega I witnessed one of the best concerts of the event, the one by Californian bluegrass mandolinist Mike Marshall accompanied by Swedish traditional music group Väsen,” said Albert Reguant producer of a radio show for Catalunya Radio. “Thursday October 30 performances that stood out were A Filetta (Corsica), and Bassekou Kouyate & Ngoni ba (Mali). Other interesting performances include the concerts by Aurelio Martinez (Garifuna/Honduras) and Camané (Portugal).”

WOMEX did a better job of scheduling so they didn’t overlap as much as previous years. Even so I generally saw 15-20 minutes before trying to catch a glimpse of something else,” said Dore Stein, producer and host of Tangents Radio in San Francisco. “I also missed three that I would have enjoyed: Miguel Poveda (Zazie from NubeNegra raved about Miguel’s performance), Bassekou Kouyate & Ngoni ba, and A Filetta.

“Three groups stood out for me. I caught 10 minutes of the Colombian group Cimarron but was transfixed. Astillero is an astounding tango group – cutting edge and virtuosic – particularly liked the double bassist’s hand percussion on the body of his instrument. They were at their best during instrumentals. Lastly I enjoyed Columbia’s salsa ensemble LA-33. Excellent performers who managed to deliver many highs and one curious low: a cover of “Roxanne” that made me run for cover.”

The Koreans Gongmyoung and Speed Caravan left a big impression,” revealed Michael Genrich (India), EarthSync’s Live & Distribution Manager.


Liu Fang - Photo by Angel Romero
Liu Fang – Photo by Angel Romero


I really liked La 33, Mastretta (he is a friend and I can’t be impartial), and Liu Fang,” indicated Rubén Caravaca of Spain’s La Fábrica de Ideas.