For an environmentally and socially aware musical world
The crisis which we are currently going through proves the limits of a model which, though it led to the reconstruction of Europe after the Second World War, has created over the last 40 years an unprecedented growth of inequality, and if allowed to continue on its current course, will lead to ecological catastrophe.
Though the pure air, the calm of our towns and cities, and return of birdsong show that nature can easily rejuvenate, and a sharp drop in the emission of greenhouse gases is possible, it is clear that when coming out of the current confinement, the world-economy will try to re-establish its previous hyperactivity, and may even want to compensate for the losses caused by the economic slowdown.
It goes without saying that we do not want a stagnant world in which everyone lives shut away from one another. The artistic world (composers, instrumentalists, singers, conductors, soloists, teacher…) aspires to return to its activities as quickly as possible, both for financial reasons and because for each composer, player, conductor, singer and teacher their work is a fundamental part of their being and they profoundly miss the sense of sharing that is intrinsic to live music.
But this recovery must not be a return to the pre-Covid 19 world. Beyond the complete reconstruction of our healthcare systems and returning production of essential goods to our local economies, it is indispensable that our governments rapidly adopt policies to stop climate change, preserve biodiversity and further social justice. Measures to develop renewable energies, reduce the forms of productivity that are exhausting our planet’s resources, and allocate finances to reinforce public services and reduce inequalities, must be put in place.
We, musicians and administrators, wish to contribute to a world which is fairer, shows more solidarity, is respectful to the environment, and at the heart of which culture and education play a central role. It is essential for us to consider the priorities of our future careers, and to reflect upon how music, as a form of sharing, social cohesion and positive development, can respond to the ecological and social problems at stake. Our choices and behaviour on both an individual and collective level must progressively bring structural changes to our sector, with the engagement and support of the many people which contribute to the musical world.
We therefore make the following commitments:
- drastically reduce the most polluting forms of transport (planes, petrol/diesel vehicles), and only fly when a project clearly justifies it: for example, when there is no real alternative transport by train, several concerts will be given, and the organiser is engaging in local educational projects and ways of involving new audiences
- favouring the development of local projects, aiming for a growth of long-term exchanges and the inclusion of different audiences
- raise awareness amongst colleagues, students, audiences and institutions and encourage discussions about social and environmental subjects
- show solidarity towards colleagues in the most difficult situations
For organisations :
- encourage conductors and soloists to take the most environmentally responsible forms of transport, including a financial clause, where necessary, in the contract, and reducing / limiting the number of invited artists that use the most polluting forms of transport
- avoid transporting instruments and material which can be locally sourced
- rethinking the logistics of rehearsals and tours, favouring the most eco-responsible suppliers (local caterers that do not use packaging, those that use recyclable materials, hotels with sustainable labels…)
- implement an environmental policy designed to reduce the organisation’s negative impact
- contribute to more social justice in the musical world, in particular through influencing institutions and public authorities
Stéphanie Baduel d’Oustrac, Amandine Beyer, Régis Campo, Bertrand Chamayou,
Julien Chauvin & Le Concert de la Loge, Sébastien Daucé & Correspondances, Lea Desandre,
Elsa Dreisig, Ébène Quartett, Graciane Finzi, Ophélie Gaillard, Antoine Pecqueur & La Lettre du Musicien, Arnaud Merlin, Raphaël Pichon, Mathieu Romano, Jean Rondeau, Nicolas Simon, Justin Taylor & Le Consort, Vanessa Wagner, Zaïde Quartett ...