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Meet the winners of the Music Cities Awards!

Updated: Dec 14, 2023

We're very excited to share with you the list of winners of the 2023 Music Cities Awards, presented by Saxony - State of the Arts. This is a global competition designed to acknowledge and reward the most outstanding applications of music for economic, social, environmental and cultural development in cities and places all around the world.


The ceremony took place on the opening night of the Huntsville Music Cities Convention, on November 18th, 2023, at the Mars Music Hall, Huntsville, U.S.A..


Scroll to the end of the post to find links to explore the full list of Nominees all of the past editions of the Music Cities Awards.


Make sure to apply to the 2024 edition of the contest. Applications are open until April 20th. Click here to learn more and apply.


Meet the winners
1. Best Global Music City presented by the Experience Fayetteville

City of Sao Paulo, Brazil

Founded in 1554, São Paulo is the capital of the State of São Paulo, with a population of 12 million and located in a metropolitan region of 22 million, it is the largest urban agglomeration in the Americas, the Southern Hemisphere, and the entire world outside Asia. It is also the largest national economic hub, accounting for about 10% of Brazil's GDP. With such a size, São Paulo City Hall is the public entity responsible for the local administration and for the main actions that qualify it as a City of Music. In this scope, São Paulo is one of the biggest cultural hubs in the country, being the site of the main concerts, festivals, and national and international presentations. The city has a vast history of promoting culture and specifically music as a means of social and economic transformation, through the most different policies, actions and local programs.


2. Best Initiative to Support Diversity & Inclusion in Music presented by the Levitt Foundation
GSBTB

The live events, music, and entertainment space are multi-billion dollar industries. When looking at who is employed behind the scenes, there's a lack of representation across women, BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, non-binary, disabled, and all intersecting identities between these groups combined with many barriers of entry. DTS helps remove these barriers and opens doors, creating a strong pipeline of professionals from historically excluded, and or underrepresented groups, and increasing the experience, diversity, and strength of the talent pool within this sector of the industry. The organisation strives to encourage more fair and equitable systems for the benefit of all persons.


3. Best Initiative to Support Music Education & Career Development presented by the Music Business Association
Diversify the stage

The live events, music, and entertainment space are multi-billion dollar industries. When looking at who is employed behind the scenes, there's a lack of representation across women, BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, non-binary, disabled, and all intersecting identities between these groups combined with many barriers of entry. DTS helps remove these barriers and opens doors, creating a strong pipeline of professionals from historically excluded, and or underrepresented groups, and increasing the experience, diversity, and strength of the talent pool within this sector of the industry. The organisation strives to encourage more fair and equitable systems for the benefit of all persons.


4. Best Music Tourism Initiative
Cidade Da Musica Salvador

The City of Salvador, capital of the state of Bahia, is a place where the relevance of music is undeniable and justifies the fact that the capital of Bahia is recognized by UNESCO as a Creative City of Music. Cidade da Música da Bahia (City of Music of Bahia) Museum, is a cultural equipment of the Municipal Secretariat of Culture and Tourism of Salvador (SECULT), whose mission is to value, register, and disseminate the music of the city. Cidade da Música is structured in four floors of immersion in the rich history and musical production of Salvador, besides having a library and a mediatheque in which it's possible to access all the museum's archives.


5. Best Initiative Using Music to Improve Health & Wellbeing
Music Health

Music Health is on a mission to integrate precision music with ease into healthcare, wellness and fitness companies. They believe that better brain health and wellbeing can be achieved by leveraging the role that music plays in activating neurons in the brain. Music Health builds the tools to make it easy for anyone to manage their own mental and physical health with music. They are starting by supporting those living with Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia, with a larger vision of helping the over one billion people around the world who are experiencing poor brain health.


6. Best Initiative Using Music to Support Environmental Sustainability
Kisiki Hai

In 2015 Frida Amani launched her community project 'Changes With Frida Amani' with a song named KISIKI HAI in a partnership with LEAD Foundation. The method helped to restore over a million trees. The song is used to create awareness to the society and help the students to easy understand the KISIKI HAI method as nature based solution to the re-greening process. The song is played as teaching material at every village, helping it as a catalyst to create familiarity with the method.


7. Best Initiative Using Music for Economic, Social or Community Development presented by the Macon Georgia
SIM Sao Paulo

SIM São Paulo is a festival that celebrated 10 years of existence in shirts 2023 edition with an artistic programme presented in more than 20 venues in the city of Sao Paulo. It also hosted the São Paulo International Music Week, a music business/community event focused on highlighting music’s role for social and economic development, which gathered more than 1,600 delegates and an attendance of more than 20 thousand fans.


8. Best Night-Time Economy Initiative
Bogota 24 hours

The Secretariat of Economic Development at Bogotá Mayor's Office is the local entity that leads the formulation, management and execution of economic development, competitiveness and rural economy policies, aimed at promoting and strengthening companies and entrepreneurs, food supply and the promotion of employment and new income for citizens in the Bogotá -Region. Bogotá 24 Hours is a strategy that promotes productive and cultural activity during unconventional hours as part of the actions aimed at reactivating the economy in Bogotá and the international positioning of the city.


9. Best Use of Music in Real Estate or City Planning
Music Box

Music Box Village is the flagship project of New Orleans Airlift, an artist-driven non-profit organization whose mission is to forge connections between people, ideas, and cultures through collaborative artworks. Music Box Village is a whimsical village of artist-made interactive Musical Architecture – physical structures named "houses". These structures reuse salvaged building materials, instruments, and music equipment into an idea for a house that can be played like an instrument.


10. Best Organisation or Individual Supporting Music in their City presented by the Knowledge Hub
Ubunifu Arts Centre

Ubunifu Art Centre (UAC) is a community-based organization based in Kariobangi, east of the capital, Nairobi. The organization offers inspiring, creative, artistic, and cultural experiences for their target population. They provide creative arts programs driven by young people's innovation and creativity.





11. Best Digital Innovation to Support Musicians or Music in Cities
The Busking Project CIC

The Busking Project is the world's largest community of street performers, with over twelve thousand registered buskers in 133 countries. Its platform has a suite of tools and services for street performers, including services such as BuskPay, which is a highly-focused tipping service that uses a QR code sign that buskers can display in the street.




Meet the 2023 Music Cities Awards Applicants:





Make sure to apply to the 2024 edition of the contest. Applications are open until April 20th. Click here to learn more and apply.

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