LAGAMME.MU: A New Co-operative for Quebec’s Professional Musiciansby Claudie Provencher
/ February 1, 2015
After reassessing its members’ needs in 2013, the Quebec Musicians’ Guild (GMMQ) is planning to create a multi-stakeholder co-op for Quebec’s professional musicians: lagamme.mu. It will be independent from the GMMQ, and provide greater visibility to artists through its website and by promoting them to private and corporate event organizers.
In an article published in the winter 2014-2015 issue of Entracte, GMMQ executive director and lagamme.mu project initiator Mylène Cyr explains that the idea seemed necessary when its members were faced with reduced employment offers and opportunities, as well as deteriorating working conditions.
In addition to giving companies and individuals access to its database of musician profiles, lagamme.mu will also assist them in their research. With an approach based on the idea of professionalism, the Guild aims to reaffirm the value of the musician’s craft.
In this sense, while the Guild focuses on musicians, the co-op will focus on the consumer: “When a future bride or a company is looking to hire musicians for their event, they expect a professional-quality service”, says Cyr.
However, it’s the musicians who will benefit the most from this Guild initiative. Through its web platform lagamme.mu will offer increased visibility to its members. Provided they have the minimum qualifications, they can create a profile for perusal by companies and individuals. “The website will give customers access to biographies, photos, videos and audio clips of soloists and groups, to help them make their selection,” says Cyr in a press release.
Although its official launch is scheduled for spring 2015, lagamme.mu has already launched its first membership drive directed at all professional musicians from Québec, whether they are members of the Guild or not, in order to build its future virtual catalog. Cyr invites all interested parties to fill out the registration form on the temporary website www.lagamme.mu in order to be first in line to receive all the news about the co-op. Since lagamme.mu is independent of the GMMQ, it will not be necessary for its artists to also be Guild members.
As Cyr points out, there is a real need for lagamme.mu, since it’s “already getting contract offers, even before its official launch!”
Translation: Eric Legault