International Cooperation makes a Difference!

The Blackboard Music Project partners emphasize the importance of the international cooperation
21 Mar, 2017

Over the course of the Blackboard Music Project, the ten project partners from eight different countries around Europe have met and discussed the value of international cooperation within YAM. 

Since October 2014 the project has sought to strengthen and expand the YAM network and the international cooperation, to share ideas and inspiration, to learn from each other – all of it to make more and better YAM concerts.

“I have learned to let the music speak for itself… Get things closer to the audience and trust in the flexibility of the young audiences” Producer Belgium

In this context the partners have outlined the primary benefits and reasons that emphasize the importance of the international cooperation.

Why international cooperation?


  • With one or two exceptions no country has a professional environment for producers and organizers that is big enough to really secure quality and development. An international collegial exchange and network provide this.
  • Children and youth all over Europe benefit from a larger variety in concerts, new and innovative approaches to create magic moments and expand horizons - experiences that last a lifetime.  
  • We can get better political influence by voicing relevant issues together.
  • Exhanging tours and productions become much easier when we are familiar with the organization systems in other countries.
  • Musicians who wish to perform for young audiences, will have access to a European network and market meaning a larger and more attractive touring and performing arena.
  • YAM in the cultural arena is much more visible when we can boost attention internationally (YAMsession and YAMawards).
”An evaluation of quality is dependent on what kind of frame of reference you have, and if the only productions you know are your own productions, then your quality standard is pretty set.” Partner Norway

International outcomes

The two major outcomes of the Blackboard Music Project has been the establishing of YAMsession, the annual international event for creative professionals working in the field of young audiences development; and the creation of this very site,

“Iceland is so isolated and I really feels that YAM opens a window and gives us inspiration. Looking into different cultures with artists creating and performing for children of all ages is so important for our world today” Organiser Iceland

YAMsession – the physical meeting

At a YAMsession you get away from the daily work and routines, out of the bubble to meet with a large network of people sharing the same passion; you experience a series of high class YAM productions from different cultures and countries with different approaches and traditions in terms of producing YAM concerts; you get the opportunity to experience live producing with expert producers and discuss exciting topics in connection with the producing process, and you hear expert talks and panel discussions which inspire, and provides new theoretical and academic angles on YAM building a stronger seriousness in the field. 

“I can say that past year I knew two or three people, now I know 20, 30 – maybe even 100. And I’ve had the opportunity to talk to them –  face to face interactions that bond. It’s way, way better than writing e-mails. This was one of the greatest benefits after all”  Partner Macedonia

YAMspace – the place to elaborate

YAMspace is the common international platform that provides all YAM professionals with access to a wealth of information.  Aside from featuring news and events, the website has incorporated a major LEARN section (digital toolkit) with training videos, interviews, work models, articles, research and much more.

But YAMspace is also a place to ask questions, to connect and to discuss all kinds of YAM topics. The YAMspace forum allows professionals to continue discussions initiated at YAMsession, or allows smaller organisations or productions companies that do not have the means to travel to a YAMsession to join discussions and in that manner benefit from a large, professional network.

“The website is a wealth of information and a great repository for all things surrounding young audiences music development”  Partner Belgium

Photo credits to Lars Opstad

This article was brought to you by the Blackboard Music Project. The aim is to share and strengthen our joint knowledge around concerts for young audiences. We hope that you have found it interesting and please feel free to drop us a comment to let us know what you think.

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