The inception of MUSIC VILLAGE occurred in 2006. Its aim was to create an artistic and educational community around music. Having hosted more than 500 musicians, educators, academics, self-taught artists and more than 50,000 visitors who attended its activities, supported the idea behind its existence and shaped its identity, it is our firm belief that it fulfilled this aim.
In its eleven years of operation Music Village has produced a high number of recorded archival material as well as music recorded in Greece and abroad as a result of the symbiotic collaborations among its artists; it has inspired five documentaries and hundreds of photographs and videos, freely available online, plus student and academic theses who used it as their object of study; it instigated the creation of other artistic communities around the country. All these achievements highlight its dynamic character and perspective as an ever-growing musical network which was born in Agios Lavrendios and is spreading in and out of the Greek borders. As founding members, we believe we have absorbed the experience and knowledge of these years. Being extremely satisfied with and proud of what has happened so far, we need to redefine Music Village’s identity and implement a series of important changes. We wish to resharpen our focus and immerse ourselves deeper into what we believe to be creativity of the highest possible standard. We hope to achieve this through the joy of symbiosis, the exchange of ideas, the merging of new and old artistic trends, and innovation.
However, we need to share with you, the people who have supported Music Village since 2006, the difficulties we have been facing in the last five years. These can be summarized as follows:
1. The professional and semi-professional forces of Agios Lavrendios have had the opportunity, in these 11 years, to engage in (and develop) numerous tourist-related endeavours. This was achieved, to a large extent, through the activities of Music Village: the dozens of free concerts, performances, tributes and lectures taking place every summer and the climate of euphoria and joy prompted by the coexistence of artists from all around the globe are a magnet pole for thousands of visitors. The organising team has been seeking the cooperation of all professionals and local authorities toward this common goal: the transformation of a small community into a model of cultural and touristic growth. Unfortunately, this goal has not been achieved in the degree desired: despite the self-sacrifice of a large number of professionals, profiteering and personal interest often prevail, undermining all efforts. We therefore need some time and effort to investigate perspectives which can establish Music Village as an institution in Agios Lavrendios, as long as common sense and a unifying spirit prevail.
2. The uncontrollable influx of hundreds of people during Music Village may mean a profitable season for restaurant and hotel owners, but does not guarantee the smooth operation of the festival and the community as a whole. In other words, the high number of visitors does not translate into more village infrastructures. The institution of Music Village has blossomed οn the condition of undistracted work offered in the workshops. The success of workshops depends on effective communication, peace of mind and unlimited dedication to artistic goals. As a result, we are in the process of seeking a new model which will offer more control over visitor numbers, offer quality accommodation to group sessions and bolster educational research and harmonic cohabitation. These have always been the focus of our interest. 3. Human resources in the Music Village team are too limited to process the high number of new offers and possibilities born in this dynamic network. We would like to encourage the artists who have been collaborating with Music Village to take initiatives and organise their own projects, which they will coordinate. We believe that this model of operation will be a lot more effective and will guarantee the high quality of projects.
For all the above reasons Music Village will proceed to a year of silent interval, while it works on this new model of operation. Within this year we expect to overcome the obstacles bringing creativity to a halt.
In the coming months we will be sending news on these developments and informing you on our activities in Athens and Thessaloniki in preparation of MUSIC VILLAGE 2018.
To start with, here is an short overview of all actions performed in Music Village 2016, seen through the lense of Galatia Kondi:
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We look forward to seeing you again! With friendly wishes, Team Music Village