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The Mastering Of A Music City | Music Cities Summit, Toronto, On


New to Canadian Music Week

The Mastering of a Music City

Global city planners and the music industry take part in Music Canada’s and Canadian Music Week’s international creative-economy summit “The Mastering Of A Music City.

The day-long summit takes place during Canadian Music Week on Saturday, May 11, 2019 at the Sheraton Center, Toronto.  Individual tickets are available or you can gain access with the CMW VIP pass.

The “Music City” is a true 21st Century paradigm – a shared realization that cities across the globe enjoy an often-huge economic dividend from the creation, performance and reception of music.

Whether it’s Austin, Texas, where music tourism represents half the city’s economic output from music, or Melbourne, Australia, where live music accounts for 116,000 jobs, or Toronto, where the Canadian recording industry has a $400 million impact, that song you hear is sung by robust civic economies worldwide.

The Mastering Of A Music City” Conference – a joint event by Music Canada, the international recording industry group IFPI and Canadian Music Week – will explore in-depth the relationship between creative city planning, quality-of-life and the music industry.

The event was inspired first by Music Canada’s report on Toronto’s 2012 Music City initiative with Austin, and directly by Music Canada and IFPI’s internationally-acclaimed report The Mastering of a Music City, Key Elements, Effective Strategies and Why it’s Worth Pursuing. That report created a global stir when it debuted at the annual international music trade conference, Midem, in Cannes, France.

A practical, how-to document, “The Mastering Of A Music City” offers a concrete list for municipalities worldwide to create a music-friendly infrastructure – including the institution of music offices and advisory Boards, the opening of public spaces and places to music events, audience development and music tourism initiatives.

Entrepreneurs, industry executives, tourism experts, artists and musicians from London to Nashville will join in sessions that break down the value of the musical creative community from the economic to the esoteric.

“Ultimately the goal is to create a more sustainable music community where artists and professionals can enjoy successful careers,” says Graham Henderson, President & CEO of Music Canada. “We want to see a world without musical borders.”

Frances Moore, IFPI Chief Executive adds: “Just imagine a world where you can go from country to country and find music cities in every one. That would be good for artists, good for record companies, good for city leaders and good for the wider public that just wants to enjoy great music.”

“Were excited to continue the Music Cities debate at Canadian Music Week,” says CMW President Neill Dixon. “The Mastering of a Music City’  initiative is one of the most exciting we’ve ever been involved in, with a tremendous potential economic upside.”

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The Mastering of a Music City

The Mastering of a Music City, Key Elements, Effective Strategies and Why it’s Worth Pursuing represents a roadmap that communities of all sizes can follow to realize the full potential of their music economy. Truly global in scale, the report is the result of more than forty interviews with music community experts, government officials, and community leaders in more than twenty cities on every continent.

A Music City is a community of any size with a vibrant music economy. Beginning with artists and musicians, Music Cities are home to a broad range of professionals who support artist entrepreneurs in their career development. They contain spaces for education, rehearsal, recording and performance, and foster a live scene with an engaged and passionate audience that provides artists with a fertile ground for developing their craft.




Music Economics



The report finds that successful Music Cities with vibrant music economics generate a wide array of benefits for cities, from economic growth, job creation, and increased spending to greater tax revenues and cultural development. Here are a few examples:

  • In Melbourne, live music alone generates over 116,000 jobs and more than AU$1 billion in spending at small venues, concerts, and festivals.
  • The Rock al Parque music festival in Bogotá attracted 400,000 attendees to the city in 2014, making it one of the largest music festivals in South America. Since its inauguration in 1995, it has attracted more than 3.8 million attendees.
  • Music tourism in Austin accounts for almost half of their US$1.6 billion economic output and contributes US$38 million in tax revenue to the city.
  • In Berlin, the intermingling of music and technology businesses in the city has demonstrated the way that a successful music economy can attract and retain talent in other industries.
  • And in South Africa, organizations like the SAMRO Foundation have sought to use music to bring people together under a unified cultural banner.


Key Strategies

Seven Key



Seven Key


The Mastering of a Music City identifies seven key strategies that cities both large and small can use to grow and strengthen their music economy:

  1. Music and musician-friendly policies;
  2. Music Offices;
  3. Music Advisory Boards;
  4. Engaging the broader community;
  5. Access to spaces and places;
  6. Audience development; and,
  7. Music tourism.

The report explores these seven key areas, resulting in 31 recommendations that members of the music community, policy makers, and political leaders can all use as a source of inspiration and information in building a strong, more vibrant music community. This report follows the successful 2012 report by Music Canada entitled, Accelerating Toronto’s Music Industry Growth, Leveraging Best Practices from Austin, Texas. The Austin-Toronto report delivered significant results in Toronto where music is now identified as a key economic sector.


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“This should remove barriers to performing and creating music,” says Graham Henderson, President of Music Canada. “Ultimately the goal is to create a more sustainable music community where artists and professionals can enjoy successful careers.”

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Music Cities Summit

The Mastering of a Music City