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Record-breaking summer for European Talent Exchange Programme

The initiative, now in its 16th year, is celebrating a record 457 shows across the festival season

By Molly Long on 06 Sep 2018

Half-Egyptian, half-Belgian singer Tamino played 10 shows through this year's Etep exchange

Half-Egyptian, half-Belgian singer Tamino played 10 shows through this year's exchange

image © Eurosonic

The European Talent Exchange Programme (Etep), the Eurosonic Noorderslag (ESNS)-led initiative to promote the spread of music across Europe and the world, is celebrating its busiest season to date, with a total 457 shows played at festivals around the world.

Among the festivals that participated in this years exchange, Hamburg’s Reeperbahn, Brighton’s The Great Escape and Reykjavík’s Iceland Airwaves welcomed the most acts, with 31, 29 and 16 artists respectively. This year also saw the initiative expand further outside of Europe, with festivals including OppiKoppi in South Africa and Canadian Music Week participating in the exchange.

After being tipped to play the most shows of the season back in April, British indie band Superorganism finished the summer at the top of the rankings, playing 20 gigs in total. Their total breaks the previous record set last year by London-born post-punk band Shame.

“Even better support and opportunities” than before

Beyond the top slot, organisers are also celebrating getting more acts than ever booked for multiple festivals. Last year, 14 acts were booked by six shows or more; this year saw 22 acts booked for six or more, representing what the initiative names as “even better support and opportunities” than before.

Sinces its launch in 2003, Etep has helped make over 3,775 shows, by over 1,360 artists, in over 30 countries, possible. 2018 marks the third consecutive year where records have been broken, the first in 2016 and then again in 2017.

The top ten most-booked acts of this season’s exchange so far are listed below:

1. Superorganism (gb) – 20 shows
2. Zeal & Ardor (ch) – 13 shows
3. Yonaka (gb) – 10 shows
4. Sigrid (no) – 10 shows
5. Tamino (be) – 10 shows
6. Altin Gün (nl) – 9 shows
7. Tom Grennan (gb) – 8 shows
8. Tshegue (fr) -8 shows
9. George Fitzgerald (gb) – 8 shows
10. Lysistrata (fr) – 7 shows


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