The Suoni Per Il Popolo is presented by the Société des Arts Libres et Actuels (SALA), a Montreal based non-profit organization which was incorporated in 2002. Rooted in exploratory musical forms, the SALA is committed to presenting avant garde and experimental music and sound within a community context. Its mandate is formalized in the following eight points:
- To organize the Suoni Per Il Popolo festival as well as a variety of off season events.
- To present a diverse artistic program featuring a broad variety of creative approaches and an eclectic variety of experimental music and sound based genres.
- To invite artists who rarely perform in Montreal and introduce new artists to new audiences.
- To create more awareness about Montreal’s thriving independent music scene, not only nationally and internationally but also locally between divergent artistic communities.
- To build links between artists and the public and involve the community in the festival through public workshops and other outreach activities.
- To provide a dependable point of access for collaboration, innovation, improvisation, and for first-time presentations of new artistic works.
- To showcase the relationship between music, sound and cinema and progressive social and political movements.
- To support the growth of Canadian artists by maintaining 50% Canadian content and by ensuring that Canadian performers are paid fees equivalent to international artists.
Festival and Off-Season Events
- An annual three week festival of approximately fifty concerts is presented each June featuring an eclectic variety of avant-garde and experimental music and sound genres such as Free Jazz, Musique Actuelle, Out World, Avant Folk, Avant Rock, Noise/Electronics, Sound Art, Twentieth Century Classical, and Maverick/Outsider music and experimental film. High profile international artists are booked alongside up and coming artists.
- The festival presents a flagship concert featuring a well known headline artist. This concert serves to raise the festival profile by drawing extra media attention and attracting new audiences.
- The festival includes a series of Canadian artists from across the country and highlights their rich cultural diversity.
- An ever increasing number of concerts and events are programmed during the off season period to maintain festival visibility. During the last fiscal year, twenty-five of these events were presented.
Local, National and International Presentation Partnerships
- The festival partners with an extensive list of local, national and international presenters such as the Off Festival de Jazz, ICASP (Improvisations, Community and Social Practice), Caribou Sonore, Sociéte Musique Contemporain de Québec, Traquen’art, Innovations en Concert, Blue Skies Turn Black, Vancouver Jazz Festival, Toronto’s Music Gallery, Toronto’s Wavelength Series and Winnipeg’s Send and Receive Festival. These partnerships permit the festival to share costs on presentations and to help make Canadian tours by visiting international artists financially feasible.
- Beginning in 2011, the festival began to present a special film series with independent Montreal film house Blue Sunshine. This series features music and sound related programming.
- An academic conference featuring national and international scholars researching the social implications of musical improvisation is regularly co-presented during the main festival period with McGill University’s Improvisation, Community, and Social Practice (ICASP).
- In 2014-2015, the festival will collaborate with the Bozzini Quartet, le Reseau LeVivier and the Huddersfield Contempoary Music Festival (UK) as part of a five year plan to annually welcome a delegation of presenters for meetings and concerts to the Suoni Per Il Popolo from Le Reseau des festivals d’Europe du Nord including representatives from Iceland, Norway, Finland, Estonia, Denmark, Serbia, Poland, Lithuania, and the UK. Other festival plans for 2014-2015 include the presentation of the Jack Quartet in collaboration with Innovations en Concert and the co-presentation of the Composers Kitchen series with the Bozzini Quartet.
- In 2014-2015, the festival will host a series of events in collaboration with the Hemespheric Institute of Performance and Politics featuring hundreds of delegates from around the Americas. The Hemespheric Institute which is a collaborative, multilingual and interdisciplinary network of institutions, artists, scholars, and activists throughout the Americas which works at the intersection of scholarship, artistic expression and politics.
In the Community: Education and Outreach
- A workshop series entitled Music Addict is offered twice a week during most of the year to at risk youth, who participate in activities offered in collaboration with Head and Hands community centre.
- A free workshop series entitled Tools of the Trade takes place during the festival and is open to the public. The series features world class contemporary musicians discussing and demonstrating their work. Other workshop activities include Improv Contact and a partnership with Caribou Sonore.
- The Suoni has also joined and is actively involved in Montreal-area presenter networks such as Le Réseau LeVivier and Le Regroupement.