24. July 2020

Unfortunately, due to Corona, we cannot hold the Waves Festival Conference this year in our Festival Home, the WUK.

But in the course of our partnership with the SAE in Vienna we have found a great alternative location. So this year’s conference will take place on September 10th and 11th in the beautiful, well equipped and well ventilated halls 😉 of SAE Vienna in Hohenstaufengasse 6 in the first district.

Due to the corona requirements, however, we only have a very limited capacity of about 100 people at a time in the building and about 40 people per room. This means that when the maximum capacity is reached, we have to ask additional visitors to be patient until participants leave the building again (one in one out principle).

In addition, we will also broadcast the entire conference live on the Internet.

In order to participate in the conference on site a free conference registration is required.

To get access to the streaming of the conference please get a free conference streaming ticket.

Library at the SAE Institute
Kaisersaal, picture by Patricia Weisskirchner


23. July 2020

In the course of the Waves Festival 2020 Conference we’re setting up a speed meeting for participants from on of our focus countries: Ukraine.

If you’re music professional from Ukraine and would like to apply for the online speed meeting session on Friday, the 11th of September 2020 please register for the conference here so you have access to the delegates database as soon it goes online (mid of August) and check yourself a free conference streaming ticket here.

Please note that your application for the speed meeting is only valid if you have registered for the music conference beforehand.


14. July 2020

The Waves Festival Conference is part of the Music Festival and offers lectures, panels and workshops. The subject-specific program is dedicated to the over-theme “East Meets West”, which will be the basis and inspiration for a long-term, pan-European cooperation.

Due to Corona, the conference will only be accessible to a limited number of visitors. To attend the conference directly in Vienna, you need a Music Conference Registration.

The conference is also broadcasted online and can be accessed with the Conference Streaming Ticket.

Confirmed conference speakers include representatives of the European Commission, Live DMA, BPI, IMMF, Bandcamp and Sound Diplomacy. Festivals like The Great Escape Festival, Focus Wales, Primavera Sound, Atlas Weekend, Ment Festival and Wide Days will also take part in various panel discussions and meeting sessions.

THU 10.SEP.2020

11.00-11.45 Meet the Ukraine (Speed Meeting)
Closed meeting for selected applicants only.

12.00-13.00 The Future of the European Music Eco System hosted by EMEE
The COVID-19 crisis has a huge impact on the music eco system, that will certainly need a lot of support and smart ideas. EMEE, the European network of music export offices, invited representatives of the European Commission and the most active music networks to hear about their evaluations, ideas and initiatives.

13.15-14.00 Music Cities hosted by Vienna Club Commission
Every city has a music scene. Each music scene defines a city. In the wake of the COVID-19 crisis, Sound Diplomacy has developed a 9-point plan on how cities can strengthen this aspect. Setting focus on Vienna we will discuss about how music creates better cities and urban development for all of us.

14.15-15.00 Closed Music Cities Workshop hosted by Vienna Club Commission
Closed workshop for invited applicants only.

15.30-16.15 Feedback Listening Session
International professionals give constructive feedback on up-and-coming acts with international potential.

18.00-18.30 MUSEXPO Presentation
Presentation of the annual international music and media conference that takes place in Hollywood, CA.

FRI 11.SEP.2020

12.00-13.00 Focus Country Ukraine
Each year true to the motto of the festival “East meets West” Waves invites two focus countries for the festival and the conference. Find out more about the rich and lively Ukrainian music scene. Networking opportunity with key players of the Ukrainian music market, facts & figures, country presentation

13.15-14.15 Fair Streaming? hosted by VTMÖ

  • Streaming a 2 min. 30 sec. track is generating the same amount as an epic 20 min. suite.
  • A “family account” enables up to 6 persons to stream “as they wish” for an only 50% higher monthly rate than an individual is paying.
  • A fake user account that streams 24/7 can create an income of app. € 45,- per month whilst the subscription fee only is € 9,99 – a nice business model for criminal minds.

Questions to be discussed at this panel:

  • How fair is the current “pro rata” accounting model?
  • Would “user centic” make a difference?
  • How can streaming services improve fairness of revenue distribution?

13.30-14.30 Focus Country UK
Each year true to the motto of the festival “East meets West” Waves invites two focus countries for the festival and the conference. Find out more about the rich and lively UK music scene. Networking opportunity with key players of the UK music market, facts & figures, country presentation

15.00-15.45 Bandcamp Webinar
Aly Gillani, Bandcamp’s European Label and Artist Rep will take lead this webinar, taking participants through the key principles behind a successful (and money-making!) presence on Bandcamp

15.00-15.45 Brexit Workshop
In February 2020, Brexit became a reality and since then, the music industry has been discussing its impact on live music and performance opportunities in the UK. A lack of information and many misunderstandings about visa requirements and work permits as well as ever changing regulations have a profound impact on current and future plans of artists, booking agencies and promoters alike. This workshop wants to inform artists seeking work in the UK about current developments and answer questions about visas, carnets, tax issues and travel regulations.

16.30-17.15 Earning Money in Times of Crisis
Musicians, managers and labels discuss their ways of dealing constructively with the difficult situation, opening up new opportunities.

16.30-17.15 Meet the Festivals (Speed Meeting)
Closed meeting for selected applicants only.

Waves Festival Conference presented by


3. June 2020

“East meets West” is also the motto of the festival’s focus countries in 2020: 

On the one hand, we are focusing on the United Kingdom. The motherland of pop music is currently saying goodbye to the European Union. What consequences will the Brexit have for the music industry? We will try to discuss this and much more at this year’s conference. As part of our focus on the UK, we will also have the festivals Wide Days, Focus Wales and The Great Escape as guests at the conference, in order to get to know their events better, but also to hear their views and approaches to the topics of corona and Brexit.

The Ukraine is the second focus country: the second largest country in Europe after Russia, it has almost five times as many inhabitants as Austria, could win the Song Contest in 2014 and has an up-and-coming music scene. Already a few years ago, we became aware of the bustling and incredibly diverse music scene in the Ukraine, which could be seen in some very fine bookings for the Waves Festival.

Alyona Alyona @ Waves 2019 (c) Patrick Münnich

Preliminary highlight was a first showcase in 2019, among others with Alyona Alyona (right in the picture) including a networking reception of the still very young but highly motivated Music Export Ukraine on Waves. Both together made us invite the Ukraine as guest country for 2020.

“It is a great honor for us to represent Ukraine as a focus country at the Waves Vienna in 2020 in the second year of our participation in the festival. Although the event will be held mostly online, we will do our best to make the experience of meeting Ukrainian music as exciting for the audience as possible. Also, we hope that our cooperation with Waves Vienna will continue, and we will meet all our international colleagues in Austria in further years”.  
Iryna Prokofieva, Head of Programmes Ukrainian Institute

“The first time I’ve been to Waves in 2015. Barely any people knew something about Ukrainian music back then. 5 years later Ukraine is a focus country. We are very proud of our talents to make this kind of progress with their music and happy that we’re with Ukrainian Institute have an opportunity to support them at the institutional level!”
Dartsya Tarkovska, Co-founder Music Export Ukraine

“The British Music Industry has always been an international business with UK acts regularly being the biggest selling artists in the world. We are delighted to be speaking at the Waves Vienna conference to help delegates understand more about the British Music Industry; this is even more important now as the world is experiencing some unsettling times and mutual understanding of the global music industry is the key to success for everyone.”
Chris Tams, British Phono Industry, BPI


3. June 2020

The conference program addresses the challenges for the music industry triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic in a variety of ways.

International experts from the music industry will share their experiences on panels and the umbrella organization of the European Music Export Agencies EMEE will host a discussion with political decision makers and organizations on the future of the European music sector.

In addition, alternative sources of income and innovative ways of communicating and disseminating content will be explored in workshops and presentations.

For example, Bandcamp, a service that has been able to make positive headlines through effective support actions for artists and labels, will hold a webinar.

The Vienna Club Commission and the local indie label association VTMÖ are inviting everyone to discussions about coordinated support measures for clubs and promoters and fair payment on streaming portals.

This year’s host countries UK and Ukraine will present their music scenes and markets, and special networking sessions will provide an opportunity to establish contacts with important industry representatives from both countries. A workshop will explain the expected effects of Brexit on the cooperation with the UK.

Feedback Listening Sessions and numerous viral networking formats complement the future-oriented program.


13. January 2020

Early Bird Music Conference tickets are available from now on. The Music Conference ticket covers all events of the Conference but no shows of the Music Festival and costs now € 40. The Music Pro Pass is valid for all events of the Conference and all shows of the Music Festival for € 65.

Both Early Bird tickets are available until 16.MAY.2020. The price then rises to € 55 for the Music Conference ticket and € 99 for the Music Pro Pass.


18. September 2019

Nominees include Keke, Elis Noa and Sketches on Duality. Jury evaluation and award ceremony at the Waves Vienna Music Festival.

For the third consecutive year the music export prize “XA” will be awarded within the Waves Vienna Music Festival. The award is an initiative of Austrian Music Export, SKE Fonds, Radio FM4 and Waves Vienna. Seven nominees have the chance to win the award and will be judged during their performance at the festival. The winner will receive prize money of 3,500 euros and the assurance of Austrian Music Export, FM4 and Waves Vienna to support the Act in the following year – among other things by integrating it into partner festivals and showcases.

Seven nominees, five jury members and 26 Austrian Bands at Waves Vienna 2019

More than 100 Bands will perform at this year’s edition of Waves Vienna Festival of which nearly 30 are from Austria! Seven out of these national musical newcomers are nominated for the export award: the young rapper Keke, singer-songwriter Bernhard Eder, soul/hip hop singer Soia, trip hop newcomer Elis Noa, hip hop/spoken word/jazz quintet Sketches On Duality, “sky gazer“ Good Willson and dream pop duo Anger.

During the three festival days, the performances of the nominated bands will be judged by a jury of experts. The jury is formed by three international jury members: Oskar Strajn (Eurosonic Noorderslag), Andraz Kajzer (Ment Ljubljana), Gorjana Jordanovska (Password Productions, Pin Festival), as well as the local Jurors Susi Ondrusova (FM4) and Lea Spiegel (SAE). After all the votes have been cast, the prize will be presented to the winning band on the last day of the festival, Saturday, 28 September, at 10:30 pm at WUK.

A Springboard for Austrian Talent

The surf-rock trio Dives, which emerged as the winner of the 2nd XA Music Export Award in 2018, went on to became one of the “Focus Acts 2019”. An new album is due to be released in November 2019 and the band will also perform at this year´s Viva Sounds Festival in Sweden.


14. August 2019

Waves Vienna 2019 is coming closer and we want to help you make your journey and stay as smooth as possible. After booking your flight – using the special Waves Vienna discount for Austrian Airlines – or train ticket, you’ll need place to stay in Vienna and we have the perfekt recommendation for you :

Ruby Hotels

The Munich-based Ruby group, led by founder and CEO Michael Struck, is breaking new ground with their Lean Luxury philosophy. By having a lean organizational structure and concentrating on the essential, Ruby can create a contemporary, affordable form of luxury for the modern, cost and style-conscious customers. Founded in 2013, the group operates Ruby Hotels in Vienna, Munich, Dusseldorf and Hamburg, with more under construction or in planning.

Also we are more than happy that we will once again be able to host one of our stopps of the legendary Delegates Tour on Saturday at the stunning roof rop terrace of Ruby Marie!

Ruby Marie Hotel Vienna
Kaiserstraße 2-4 /Mariahilfer Straße 120
1070 Vienna
Ruby Sofie Hotel Vienna
Marxergasse 17
1030 Vienna  
Ruby Lissi Hotel Vienna
Laurenzerberg 2 / Fleischmarkt 19
1010 Vienna


2. July 2019

Book your flights to the “Waves Vienna 2019” online at www.austrian.com and save 15% on all applicable fares! To do so, simply enter the following code in the eVoucher field on the Austrian homepage booking engine:

Code: WAVES19

Booking period: now until September 29th, 2019
Valid for flights to Vienna and return as of September 19th, 2019 until October 06th, 2019 (final date for return flight) on scheduled flights operated by Austrian Airlines.

Book your flights here!


21. May 2019

True to the motto “East Meets West”, also this year there will be two focus countries, one from the east – Hungary – and one from the west – Sweden.

Since at least the worldwide sucess of ABBA Sweden is seen as one of the most successful nations when it comes to pop music. We are more than happy to experience the latest and most exciting acts live at Waves Vienna and to get the chance to exchange with important swedish music professionals and discuss the formula of success of swedish pop music.

The second focus country Hungary is very connected to Austria, not only geographically but also culturally and historically. A lot of representatives of the hungarian music business have already been much respected guests at Waves Vienna. This year’s focus opens the opportunity to strenghten this relationship and get to know the music scene of our neighbours even better! Hungary offers a very lively and young music scene and a diverse festival landscape, with of course the biggest hungarian festival Sziget.

Waves Vienna 2019 will provide a focus on acts from these countries in the live programme. The Waves Vienna Music Conference will furthermore devote a part of its programme to the respective music markets and scenes of these two countries.