ESNS completes line-up for digital festival and conference


The European showcase festival and conference ESNS in Groningen adds five more acts to the line-up and completes its festival programme. As the programme for the conference is now fully published as well, ESNS is ready to kick off next week.

The five newest additions to the festival line-up are Dutch acts MEROL, Wies, Pom and Cloudsurfers who will be playing Noorderslag, and Tinlicker at Eurosonic. They join a diverse list of European acts, who will be performing on the second digital version of the ESNS festival. Among previously announced acts are Wet Leg (gb), K.ZIA (de), Carla Prata (pt), S10 (nl), Meskerem Mees (be), Alina Pash (ua), Blanks (nl), Yard Act (gb), Priya Ragu (ch) and Gaidaa (nl).

The ESNS 2022 conference will focus on subjects such as sustainability and the recovery of the music industry. Themed ‘Building Back Better Together’ ESNS aims to make the industry a better, more inclusive, and greener sector. Therefore, Frans Timmermans, Executive Vice-President of the European Commission, responsible for The Green Deal will be opening the conference and is set to give a keynote on ESNS Wednesday. Timmermans will elaborate on the recovery from the current crisis and how the Green Deal will or can affect the music industry in a positive way. To act on the Green Deal, a proactive and thorough way of taking steps is necessary. Marjan Minnesma, director of Urgenda, will give a keynote on this, called Scale up and Hurry up!, on Friday the 21st.

More on the Green Deal and recovery will be discussed at the ESNS conference, with the panel The EU’s Green Deal – Where does the music fit? with Claire O’Neill (A Greener Festival), Niklas Nienass (European Parliament), Holger Jan Schmidt (Yourope), Laurence Graff (European Commission), moderated by Greener Event’s Linnéa Svensson, while Emmanuel Legrand will moderate Recovery of the Music Sector – Where Are We Now? with Burak Özgen (GESAC), Mikolaj Ziółkowski (Open’er Festival), Susanne Hollmann (European Commission) and Erminia Sciacchitano (Ministry of Culture of Italy) to hear how the festivals were impacted and where they stand today.

Also joining the ESNS conference line-up are Hannah Shogbola (United Talent), Natasha Gregory (Mother Artists), Sally Dunstone (Primary Talent International) and Whitney Boateng (WME) in the Agents Panel, moderated by CAA’s Maria May. ILMC head Greg Parmley asks how certain we can be of a big 2022 festival season. Christof Huber (Yourope), Stephan Thanscheidt (FPK Scorpio), Marta Pallarès (Primavera Sound), Codruta Vulcu (ARTmania) and Paul Reed (AIF) will have the answers.

Other panels and keynotes include A Model for a United Industry, which will dive deeper into how we can leave a better legacy for ourselves and our industry. On Thursday, Helienne Lindvall will interview Merck Mercuriades, – former manager of Beyoncé, Elton John and Mary J. Blige – speaking about his goal to get songwriters a better pay, through his Hipgnosis Songs Fund. The question of how to share streaming revenues in a fair and sustainable manner, will be answered by a panel including British member of Parliament Kevin Brennan.

The panels focus on a global way of approaching a better music industry. Diversity in the Backstage, a panel hosted by Omroep Zwart, is one of the talks that helps create awareness for inclusivity, while Among panels that show how it’s done across the globe, are: Are You Export Ready for Mexico? by EMX, Rabbit or Man in the Moon? Doing Business in China, presented by Dutch Music Export, RVO, and C-SHARP, and Short Videos, Films, Series and Nft’s – Music and India’s Booming Audiovisual Industry, presented by Ears On India.

ESNS also features the ceremony for the prestigious European prize for emerging talent at Music Moves Europe Awards, as well the Popprijs, ESNS Kickstart, Pop Media Prijs, Popstipendium and IJzeren Podiumdieren. To find the full line-up of ESNS Festival and ESNS Conference, head to

ESNS takes place – entirely online – from January 19 – 22, 2022. Tickets for the digital conference are available for €99,- via The festival will be available – free of charge – with sessions recorded by Dutch broadcaster NTR in collaboration with NPO 3FM, to be broadcast by NPO 3FM, NPO 3 and the digital festival platform, hosted by VPRO 3VOOR12.