Informative, educational and/or controversial – present your topics, projects and passions to the Classical:NEXT delegates in our conference programme! The conference section of Classical:NEXT offers presentations, many types of group discussions and interactive formats as well as individual and group mentoring. In addition, Network Meetings offer a platform for specific sector and special-interest groups.

The main aims of the conference are to help delegates with burning issues, examine today’s challenges and find solutions together, to stay up-to-date with new developments and to shape the future of classical and contemporary music. A broad range of topics can be addressed, from artistic topics to audience outreach and engagement to business- and communication-related issues. Topics must be relevant to multiple sectors and regions. Our focus lies on open, participatory and interactive formats. These can be debates, presentation/group discussion blends, world-cafés, fishbowls or mini-workshops. The Classical:NEXT team will gladly assist in giving the optimum shaping to selected conference session proposals. What we do not seek are traditional panel discussions. These will only be allowed under exceptional circumstances and will be kept to the absolute minimum.

Conference Sessions

The Classical:NEXT 2018 conference sessions will be selected by an independent jury to reflect the following areas:

  • NEXT:Income - new markets and the future of funding and financing ;
  • NEXT:Generation - future listeners and audience engagement concepts ;
  • NEXT:Technology - new solutions for new challenges ;
  • NEXT:Sound - new music, new formats, sonic influences and inspirations ;
  • NEXT:Society - music’s role in social change and personal growth.

Especially desired are insights and new developments from non-art-music areas (sports, film, theatre, non-music business, etc.) from which the art music field could learn. Please note that the final programme speaker line up should reflect the norm of the general population as regards gender, ethnicity and other factors.

Every format is possible (see “how to apply – tips” on the right). For most Conference sessions the length is usually 60 minutes.

One-to-One Mentoring / Roundtable Mentoring

Mentoring sessions offer free one-to-one consultations (5x15 minutes) or roundtable consultations (1x45 minutes) with experienced experts from a wide variety of fields, such as live production & touring, label & publishing, PR, new technologies etc.

Should you have any questions, please contact us at for further information.

Network Meetings

Network Meetings offer a platform for specific sector and special-interest groups. These are 45 minutes in length, usually. If you are interested in coordinating a network meeting, please contact us at Slots are very limited!.

off C:N Presentations

If you are interested in booking an off C:N presentation, please contact us at

Submission deadline is Friday, 29 September 2017.

Focus on Interactive Session Designs!

Please note that Classical:NEXT aims to feature mostly interactive formats in 2018. Our goal is to ensure each conference session is the most effective and successful it can be! Our decade-long experience has shown that interactive formats, including the audience rather early and in a structured way, are more fruitful than panel discussions in the majority of cases.

Thus, in your proposal, we ask you to focus on the key issue(s) to be explored, why that issue is so important and what outcome you hope to achieve with the session. Should your proposal be selected, the Classical:NEXT team will design a suitable format together with you. We may invite a facilitator to help you realise the agreed session design so that you can concentrate on the content in your preparations and during the session itself.

Note also that the maximum number of speakers on each session’s programme is three. Conference session length is usually 60 minutes.

How to Apply – Tips

Put yourself in the jury’s shoes – they review hundreds of proposals, make their job easy! Here’s how:
  • When writing your proposal, keep it as short, informative and convincing as possible.
  • State the issue at hand, why it is important, and what questions will be addressed in your session.
  • If you have ideas about how to design your session, put this into your proposal. However, be aware that it is the excellence of the idea and key participants which matter most in the jury selection. The specific design of the session can be developed after selection, so don’t worry if you are not a “workshop whiz”.
  • We seek open, participatory and interactive formats. Each Classical:NEXT session aims to actively involve as many delegates in the room as possible. The Classical:NEXT team will gladly assist in giving the optimum shaping to selected conference session proposals. Traditional panel-type discussions are not desired and will be allowed only in exceptional cases.
  • The jury-selected conference programme is not the place for project or product pitches. To present artistic projects in a quick-fire slot with video, you can propose for a Project Pitch [hyperlink to Project Pitch Proposals page]; for presenting new services or offers to business in a longer, conference-style slot, you might consider booking an off C:N Presentation.

  • For more hints and tips, see here.