The European Forum of Worldwide Music Festivals (EFWMF), the trade organization for a network of European music festivals, is planning to utilize a talent exchange program to support non-rock and pop

The European Forum of Worldwide Music Festivals (EFWMF), the trade organization for a network of European music festivals, is planning to utilize a talent exchange program to support non-rock and pop genres.

The move has been influenced by the success of the European Talent Exchange Program (ETEP), which was launched in 2003 by the Noorderslag Foundation, organizers of the Netherlands' EuroSonic and Noorderslag Weekend music festivals.

The ETEP is inviting the region's leading promoters to introduce up-and-coming artists to European rock and pop festivals taking place outside the acts' country of origin.

Moreover, the 150 festivals participating in ETEP work with music-radio stations belonging to the European Broadcasting Union to facilitate cross-border promotion for the festivals' newcomer acts.

The ETEP has contributed to the international awareness of rock and pop hit acts such as the U.K.'s Franz Ferdinand and Sweden's the Soundtrack of Our Lives.

That success has prompted the EFWMF's board to discuss how and when to extend the ETEP's talent-exchange format to non-rock and pop genres.

According to Hans Hjorth, the EFWMF's Sweden-based chairman, it still is not clear how format's evolution will work.

But one possibility is to set up an "ETEP 2," which would encourage the existing festivals to set up extra stages that focus on non-rock and pop performers.

"Roskilde (Festival) in Denmark is a rock and pop festival. But it also has a stage devoted to world music," Hjorth explains to Billboard.biz.

One possible move would be to invite more rock and pop festivals to consider stages dedicated to folk or urban-music performers from other European countries.

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