ECAS (European Cities of Advanced Sound and related arts) is a network of independent non-profit organisations across Europe, all dedicated to advancing sound cultures, music and related arts.

All members of ECAS have spent years crafting unique festivals and events, each with its own identity grounded in strong local connections and context.

ECAS encompasses Europe, North America, South America and Australia, and has resulted in the creation of the global network ICAS (International Cities of Advanced Sound).

Activities within the events and festivals organised by ICAS members include concerts, performances, commissioned work, exhibitions, participatory projects, educational workshops, conferences, presentations, panel discussions, publications and informal spaces for knowledge-sharing within and between fields. As cultural entrepreneurs, ECAS members measure their success by valuing quality, critical reflection, innovation and creative exchange.

The network aims to spark dialogue, exchange ideas and knowledge, and provide mutual support for European organisations working with advanced sound cultures and related arts. Its goal is also to support members in their activities to develop and promote independent music and sound creation within their specific localities.

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Beginning in 2006, the ECAS network has brought together a large number of cultural events from different European countries with a commitment to supporting and nurturing cultural connections through advanced sound. The focus is upon cultural festivals and events that support emerging cultural forms and new forms of audience participation. ECAS is the first organisation to focus on promoting advanced sound as having a common European cultural heritage.

Commencing in 2010, the network has been funded with support from the Culture Programme of the European Commission, to deliver a five year action called Networking Tomorrow’s Art for an Unknown Future.

The objectives are:

  • To commission world class inter-cultural artworks and present them in different trans-national settings.
  • To support ‘bottom-up’ or citizen creativity and innovation, and provide pathways from ‘prosumer’ to professional.
  • To test different engagement methods and engage large numbers of people (hundreds of thousands or millions) by staging events that are themselves experimental and involved in nurturing new cultural forms and technologies.
  • To increase the mobility of artists, audiences and professionals.
  • To build stronger trans-EU connections by consolidating the ECAS network.
  • To explore new methods of collaboration for people working in the cultural sector.
  • Cross-cultural – to support musics that have grown within migrant communities, to open marginal sounds up to a bigger audience.

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