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Jeunesses musicales international

The meaning of «jeunesses musicales international»

Jeunesses Musicales International (JMI) is the largest youth music non-governmental organisation in the world, created in Brussels, Belgium in 1945, with the mission to "enable young people to develop through music across all boundaries". JMI has established four priority activity fields: Young Musicians, Young Audiences, Youth Empowerment and Youth Orchestras & Ensembles.

With member organisations currently in almost 40 countries, JMI is a "global" network with over 36,000 diverse musical events annually. The events embrace all styles of music, reaching almost 5 million young people up to the age of 30. The work of JMI is supported by the Federal Government of Belgium – Belgian Federal Science Policy Office (BELSPO),[1] ACTIRIS [fr][2] and the Creative Europe[3] Programme of the EU.

Marcel Jules Léon Cuvelier was born in Brussels on May 22, 1899. After having attended classic high school education, he frequented the courses of law school at the Université Libre de Bruxelles and was named Doctor of Law. He was passionate about sports and participated at the Olympic Games of 1920 and 1924 as part of the national fencing team.[4]

His interest in music was firm as he studied the violin from an early age. Furthermore, he took musical studies at the Music Academies of Etterbeek and Anderlecht and the Royal Conservatory of Brussels. A jazz aficionado, Cuvelier also played the sax in a university band called the Doctor's mysterioux six.

The idea of creating an organisation dedicated to young musicians sprang in Cuvelier's mind early, in 1928, as he was watching the construction of the Centre for Fine Arts, Brussels. "I always thought of giving concerts for young people… I remember that this idea haunted me already in 1928, during the construction of the Palace of Fine Arts, when I was walking over the beams and the bars, when I walked like an insect in that huge frame that would become a concert hall, meeting rooms, offices, halls. I thought about an audience that is demanding, worthy of respect, living: YOUNG. I saw it arrive from all sides, before the spotlight, from those balconies, out of those halls. I could already hear the shouts and the applause" (text from the program brochure "Twenty-fifth Birthday of the foundation of the movement Youth and Music" Brussels January 11–16, 1965, p. 7)[5]

His lifetime dream would take shape in 1940 with the foundation of the organization Youth and Music (also known by the belgicism Jeunesses Musicales). The purpose of this organization was not only to give life concerts for youngsters, as was the case of previous organizations. Jeunesses Musicales was thought of as a real community of youngsters who loved music and were able to organize their concerts and manifestations. Meeting René Nicoly brought to the foundation of the Jeunesses Musicales International in 1945. This society, today known as Jeunesses Musicales International, would, later on, acknowledge him as Secretary-general.

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