Music made the most severe restrictions bearable

Music Hungary Konferencia was organized for the second time in Veszprém and this year it was expanded with a showcase-concert programme.

Balázs Weyer, President of Music Hungary Szövetség (M.H. Association), Gyula Porga, Mayor of Veszprém and Zoltán Mészáros, Chief Advisor for programme development at Veszprém-Balaton 2023 European Capital of Culture opened the conference. Weyer praised the most powerful programme of all conferences so far, he also spoke about the fulfilled dream of the Szövetség that the concerts are finally included in the programme. The curator was András Süli this year. Gyula Porga and Zoltán Mészáros have talked about that the Music Hungary Konferencia is a fine addition to the sparkling cultural life of Veszprém and it also fits to the plans of European Capital of Culture 2023, therefore they are happy to support it for the next years. 

The pandemic period was the major topic on the opening day. Dr. Péter Horváth, head of ProArt gave us an insight into the soon available Zeneipari jelentés (Music Industry report). The figures and statistics show, how the music sector was torn by the last ~1,5 year. Then the involvement of the state was taken up, Szilárd Demeter commissioner for popular music and Adél Dénes head of Petőfi Kulturális Ügynökség (Petőfi Cultural Agency) were the guests, who introduced the plans and projects of PKÜ and National Cultural Fund of Hungary (NKA). EJI initiated a remembrance in honour of the musicians and colleagues, who have recently passed away. 

“Music industry has fulfilled its role during the most difficult times as well: entertained and delighted the audience, thus made the most severe restrictions bearable. Thanks to the desire for creativity and communication, that actually drives us, artists. Everything that our respected colleagues have created has a lasting value for the future. Footprints, that not only they, but we all can be proud of.”

-Bertalan Temesi, member of the board at the Association

Photograpter: Zsiga Pál

In the closing session Sándor Bajzáth, addictologist, Ádám Bérczes founder of Egység Média (Unity Media), Petra Krischner, behaviour analyst and Barbara Tóth, pop music manager, programme manager of Hangfoglaló have talked about the mental health of musicians and industry professionals. In the gap-filler conversation next to “classical addictions”, they mentioned workaholism and the mental burdens of pandemic. At the end of the day, shows of up-and-coming artists awaited for those who were interested, at the threes venues: Expresszó, Papírkutya (Paper Dog), Terem (Room). On the first day Anna Szalai made a wonderful mood in the cold Veszprém night, after the Hungarian melodies AKC Misi’s energetic party blew the stages and next to the music industry professionals, the youth of the city have come down to the show as well. The closing event of the day was the dark electronic concert of Superflake at Expresszó, which was truly a world-class production. 

The programme for the second day of the Konferencia was also interesting. Important questions came up, from the vinyl market through the international support systems and the problems of domestic radio broadcasting to the export opportunities of Hungarian music. Contrary to previous years, two new types of programmes have made it into the conference; there were listening sessions, where the guests reviewed new songs, music videos and podcasts and they organized trainings aimed for future music professionals, of which the TikTok training hold by Eszter Dezsényi, marketing manager at Universal Music Hungary was surprisingly popular. The discussion about the future of radio broadcasting was really meaningful, where Gergely Horváth and Péter Sivák radio experts, Enikő Gallasz WM Music Distribution, Kriszta Peremenczky Universal Music Hungary discoursed if YouTube and Spotify have already taken the places of major publishers, radio talent shows and would digital broadcasting (terminated in Hungary) solve this problem. 

In the closing session of the Konferencia the topics were the international touring and the festival season for the next year discussed by László Borsos Live Nation Tamás Kádár Sziget, MHSZ, Balázs Soós A38, Tamás Veres Budapest Park, after that Balázs Weyer said a short conclusion. He highlighted that the IX. Music Hungary Konferencia & Showcase was the most significant one so far and invited everyone to the concerts in the evening. During the acapella show of Napfonat no sound could be heard from the audience, HocusPony made a wild bang at Terem, Déva’s exceptional, unique style echoed perfectly at Expresszó and Ibbigang with one of the most excellent set at the showcase festival closed the two-day event, which was also supported by the Veszprém-Balaton 2023 European Capital of Culture programme.

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