Ladies and gentlemen parliamentarians,

Dear Roch-Olivier Maistre,

Ladies and gentlemen,

Dear friends,


I’m very pleased to be able to bring you together today, along with Roch-Olivier Maistre, who will present his report to you in a moment. I want to thank him once again for accepting this mission and doing this work. I also thank Yannick Faure, the rapporteur. Thank you again for this document and the recommendations that are made. The quality of its content, but also of its presentation and writing, makes it an eminently readable report.

I’ll tell you a little bit about that, but first I want to remind you of the broader ambition of this mission—the ambition to have a real policy for music, for music, on this five-year period. That is to say, a real global project that gives meaning, that makes all our actions converge: from support for creation, dissemination, export for professionals, to the development of teaching, practice and access to works for audiences.

The Ministry of Culture has acted for your sector in recent years. But we must give a clearer picture of the structure and direction that guide our measures, the model of society they serve.

We strongly believe in the role that music can play in the project of emancipation and solidarity on which the President of the Republic was elected. It is for these reasons that music has been attacked for several years by those who would destroy our culture, our references and our values; those who seek to weaken our civilization attack it. At Bataclan, in Manchester, all over the world, we must not forget: the music is under attack. It is attacked because it liberates and because it federates. That is precisely why we will defend it.

What are the contours of this musical policy?

We must respond to two challenges in your sector: that of diversity, which goes hand in hand with the decisive challenge of sharing value, and that of citizen participation in the cultural life we support.

Cultural diversity has become a real challenge at a time of globalization, new media, the emergence of a global culture. As I have travelled over the past six months, I believe that I am committed to defending and promoting it: some of you may have seen me at Solidays, or at the festival MaMa ; others in Arles for the Festival des Suds others at the Aix Festival, Radio France, the Festival Musica de Strasbourg or the Philharmonie; and others at the Technoparade. The responsibility of the Ministry of Culture is to ensure that our fellow citizens have the choice: whether they have access to all the aesthetics, to the diversity of works, whether they are French or not; that they have access to live and recorded music.

The second challenge is participation.

Many citizens are excluded or feel excluded from cultural life in France, because they face material or psychological barriers that limit their access to the diversity of the offer or concert halls. But music is a daily food for most: almost two-thirds of French people say they can’t do without it. I’m one of them!

Many do not have the opportunity to practice an instrument or chant themselves. This lever of emancipation is now reserved for a few. That is not acceptable.

We will pursue a music policy to meet these two challenges: preserving our cultural diversity model, which is a real challenge for civilization, and building a country of musicians.

This policy will be based on four pillars.

Support for the creation and the French music industry, first of all, because we cannot defend diversity without nurturing it. That is why the challenge of preserving and sharing value has become essential.

It starts with supporting artists and authors. I fought to make their voice heard in the Government in the context of the reform of social protection. They had to go through a particular solution to compensate for the increase in the CSG. I am pleased to confirm that a solution has been found. I am very pleased about that, and I would like to take this opportunity to thank the parliamentarians who have mobilized, both in the Senate and in the National Assembly, on all benches, to help us find a way.

The ministry will also encourage the development of musical industries and the export of French creation.

I started to take several steps in this direction.

At the European level, I advocate for a better sharing of value, which is one of the conditions for the sustainability of cultural creation and diversity. The debates are taking place right now in Brussels and the battle is not yet won. I want to emphasize that we need to speak out, lobby and educate. This is very important: the battle is being played out. I am travelling again this Friday to Brussels and will receive the ANSIP Vice-President of the European Commission on 7 December.

Value is increasingly captured by digital giants outside the traditional music stream. This is what you call the “ value gap ” - I would say “la écart de valeur” in French. Authors, artists, performers, producers must be paid their fair value, no more no less. It is the sustainability of creation and therefore our cultural model that are at stake. I would even say that our model of society is at stake. I mean it in every way – especially in Brussels, believe it, as much as possible. That is why we decided to take advantage of the Frankfurt fair to bring together a number of Ministers of Culture in a more friendly way and outside the big session. And it is bearing fruit. Any opportunity to meet, to speak—as the filmmakers did at the time—is extremely important to defend these models, which are truly models of society.

At the national level, we then decided to double next year the ministry’s grant to the French Music Export Office, which is in full effervescence and which we must accompany with ambition. This effort should make it possible to radiate throughout the world your musical projects, in all aesthetics. The state subsidy will be €2.7 million in 2018, thanks to the support of parliamentarians whom I want to thank once again.

And we want to go further in this five-year period. But we do not want to go alone: the sector will have to strengthen its support for musical export, as the State has just shown the example.

We have also maintained the two tax credits for music for 2018, that is 15 million euros: the tax credit for musical performances, on the one hand, which had its first year of existence and for which we will take stock, and the Tax Credit for Phonographic Production, on the other hand, which has demonstrated its benefits for the production and support of emerging francophone talent. It expired this year. I am pleased to confirm that it will be extended in the amending Finance Act.

We have also sustained support for the digital transition. And we will be very vigilant on the issue of the concentration of the live entertainment market: this subject concerns us all, collectively, and we have seized it. The challenge is clear: it is to maintain the diversity of the shows' programming.

I commissioned a study from the artistic creation branch of the department, so that we could have objective data. It’s really an important topic. She just finished it, and we’re studying it. We shall see, on the basis of the results of this study, whether corrective measures should be taken.

Finally, I am announcing today that an ambitious plan to help video clips will be put in place by the CNC, starting on 1er january 2018.

The video clip has become one of the first music consumption media: 82% of YouTube users use it to listen to music. The TNC’s aid will increase tenfold from €300,000 to €3 million. With this new support, the French offer of video clips on the platforms will be, at the very least, greatly enriched.

In total, the schemes I have just mentioned will represent a €20 million effort for the music industry in 2018.

Another essential pillar of our policy is strengthened support for institutions and actors who carry out a public service mission, because they are guarantors of cultural diversity.

It is essential that the Ministry of Culture directly leads this policy. The DGCA, the DRAC are at your side and will remain so. We want to breathe new life into this policy.

I propose several tracks, to better accompany actors who make live the diversity of aesthetics.

I’m going to continue the labeling of opera houses of national interest. I confirmed last Friday, when I went there, that it was certified at the Opéra Rouen-Normandie. I saw what was being done there.

We will study new labels of national centres of musical creation, with the association of CNCM, to allow a better national diffusion of contemporary creation.

In the field of traditional music and world music, I know how essential mobility is and I want to support it: we will strengthen the Visa task force.

For jazz, we are preparing an overall strategy to support creation, improve the distribution of the repertoire and ensure the renewal of audiences. The reflection will lead to recommendations, notably on the diffusion of jazz in our labeled networks, the National Jazz Orchestra, or the role of the National Office of Artistic Diffusion.

We will also reaffirm our support for musical ensembles, orchestras and soloists, who are ambassadors of France around the world. I hope that some of the new measures granted to the Export Bureau will be reflected in these aesthetics. Finally, we must improve support for careers and retraining. I am thinking, for example, of the singers, and in particular of the singers.

The third pillar of our music policy, to meet the challenge of participation – and you know how much I care about it and how much we care about it today – territorial broadcasting.

Music policy must allow us to reclaim areas that are becoming desertified. Music festivals play an absolutely essential role. I am thinking of a festival I visited this summer, the Chaillol Itinerant Festival in the Hautes-Alpes. The way it reaches audiences on the ground is absolutely incredible. We can’t imagine such enthusiasm, real enthusiasm, for music «up in the mountains». We have to go and see to realize this effect. I am also thinking of the Côte-Saint-André or many other festivals that we know about in the territories, which play a real role. The appetite is real. Attendance at these festivals is only increasing, as is the appetite for participation – including volunteers. It is a whole way of life that is established around these events. And we must better support those in areas where cultural sites are rare, especially in rural areas. When we are here, we realize that we are in a town of plenty. However, some territories are deserted and do not have access to festivals. We really have to work on that.

I would also like to open a new page on symphonic decentralization and have orchestras circulate more around their location. It’s also an issue that I’ve done a lot of work on. The effects are extraordinary.

In the field of current music, we will finish deploying for all SMAC the subsidy floor of 100,000 euros voted by parliamentarians last year. And I would also like us to increase the number of industry contracts signed with the communities, as we did in Nouvelle-Aquitaine in Biarritz in September.

Finally, and more broadly, I would like our multi-disciplinary labeled places to be able to broadcast more music. The programming of national stages is largely dominated by theatre today. The dance is present, the music very clearly insufficiently. During the next recruitment of the directors of these venues, special attention will be paid – in the projects they present – to the place of composers or musical ensembles in residence.

Finally, the fourth pillar of our policy is support for amateur music practice. It continues to grow. This is the main trend of the last forty years: one Frenchman in ten practices an instrument or sings regularly, and one young person in four. This is an essential part of cultural life that the public authorities have not sufficiently taken into account so far. We will do so. And we are going to do it first – you won’t be surprised – through school, because it allows us to reach everyone at an early age.

We will develop instrumental practice, strengthening our support for initiatives like DEMOS or «Orchestre à l'Ecole», and making sure that they spread. I am also preparing with Jean-Michel Blanquer a Choral Plan – you must have heard about it – which is a simple and concrete tool to generalize musical practice among all children. That is not saying that it is important. All current studies on neuroscience show the importance of learning music for the intelligent development of the brain. I think there is a unity of cohesion and connection, of learning to be together, to listen to each other and to work together. Everything is pushing us in this direction. And we are going to do it! The complicity between our two departments is quite unprecedented and we will take advantage of it.

We will be deploying new means next year, from one in four institutions with choirs today to one in two in 2018, if we want to set a numerical course – that’s one way of imagining it. We will rely on the mobilization of the music association sector and conservatories. I wanted to increase their support by three million euros in 2018 to reach twenty million euros in total and to renew with a policy of accompaniment of these conservatories, because it is thanks to them that we will move forward concretely and transform the lives of our children. In this regard, I was in Rouen last week and I visited the Regional Conservatory committed, with our help, to mobilize musicians involved in thirty schools. I assure you that in all the classes I have seen, whether dance or music, the smiles of audiences of all ages (professionals or children who came as part of their school curriculum) said a lot about how important it was for them. I also hope that the music sector will accompany this Choral Plan.

These are the priorities of our music policy. I wanted to take this time to outline them. They may seem to go beyond the purpose of our meeting today, but I had warned Roch-Olivier Maistre about them and they really go to the heart of this policy. Because if we are gathered, it is because we share the ambition of a musical life for this country.

You are professionals, so you are passionate. And you are, by choosing this channel directly anchored in the daily life of people, engaged in the City. You are citizens, and you use music as a vector for this cohesion and connection with others.

As soon as I arrived, I wanted to launch a mission on the Maison commune de la musique with a triple objective – because I also heard all the players in the sector: to ensure the relevance of such a project; to verify, then, through consultation, that your sector was always in support of this idea; if necessary, mobilize it to drive and accompany very early this vast plan for music, by federating you. This was a priority, as early as June 2017. I announced this study and report to MIDEM in June. So I’m very pleased to be able to tell you that this resulted in this document that we’re pleased to present to you.

Before turning the floor over to Roch-Olivier Maistre, I would like to tell you that I think this report is an excellent one. That’s how I got it. And since we’re talking about music, I want to tell you that I feel totally in harmony with it! There are a number of reasons for that. One is the methodology. There was a lot of industry consultation. Everybody was heard. Roch-Olivier Maistre took the time to gather and aggregate the proposals. He analyzed them impartially – and we only met after that – in terms of their realism and their opportunity with regard to the challenges facing your sector. This method, which starts from a clear ambition of transformation and takes the time of dialogue, is exemplary of the one I want to apply to all my reform projects, I tell you.

I think we can be satisfied with that report in terms of the diagnosis afterwards. The Maison commune de la musique has been the subject of various reflections in recent years. I have heard about it. It was important to be able to straighten things out. The diagnosis made by Roch-Olivier Maistre is very clear, and I think I can say that it is shared by a large number of actors. For my part, I subscribe to his observations – particularly those that concern the core of the missions relevant to what this common House would be. The report focuses on a role of observation, information, training, economic support and international development. These are the key issues in the sector, which are well summarized here. And I want to say that I have heard the message in this report about the crucial issue of funding and governance, which will therefore be at the heart of the discussions in the coming weeks.

Finally, as I did initially, I would like to commend the work of formulating the proposals. In accordance with what was requested, the ten recommendations issued are operational recommendations, the idea of this mission being indeed to have the elements to make concrete progress. The recommendations are not only about the Common House, but also about the Ministry itself and the importance of reaffirming its strategic role – which I have just done before you. It was important.

What are the next steps? In the coming weeks, departmental management will organize a rapid consultation with professional organizations on each recommendation. Some offer several alternative options, which gives us real leeway. In the meantime, interdepartmental work to analyze the recommendations will be conducted.

I would also, of course, like to use this time of reflection to open the discussion with parliamentarians. They mobilized around this report. I greet those present today, and I recall that the creation of a public institution such as the “National Centre” proposed by Roch-Olivier Maistre, based on what is now the Centre national des variétés et du jazz (CNV), should be enshrined in legislation that includes a framework for resources and organization. So I will be able to announce in January, as I indicated last week, the decisions that the Government will have taken on the basis of the ten recommendations of the report.

Here are the elements I wanted to share with you: to outline the priorities of this music policy and our commitment to music in all its diversity – it is very important to reassure all the actors and professionals in the sector of our total support; recall the measures that the public authorities have just taken in favour of your sector (the subsidy to the Export Bureau, the Choral Plan, the announcement of new support for video clips, the confirmation of tax credits) to greet the quality and spirit of the relationship with which, I repeat, we are in music, in harmony; finally, to tell you what will be the method and the timetable of its examination.

Voila! The floor now goes to Roch-Olivier Maistre. Thank you again, thank you for listening.