, Music Board of Ireland Documentary

Here’s a music documentary you won’t be seeing in its entirety on Irish TV any time soon. Lindsey from Second Aspect (now Manina films) made a film examining the failure of the Music Board of Ireland and ruffled a few feathers in the process.

The Music Board was established on an interim basis for the period May 2001 to May 2004 in partnership between Government, as represented by the Department of Arts, Sport and Tourism, and the Industry, as represented by the IBEC Music Industry Group. Its proposed role was to act as a forum for the industry; to devise and actively promote strategic policies for the development of the music industry and the maximisation of its contribution to the national economy; and to assist Government and its agencies in their efforts to develop the industry nationally and internationally.

The Board’s major undertaking, a report on The Economic Significance of the Irish Music Industry proposed a strategic plan for the development of the music industry (that phrase again!) in Ireland, called Shaping the Future, and these were presented to the Minister. However, in the absence of any positive response and, most importantly, further funding, it seems the Board had no choice but to wind up.

The documentary features talking head interviews with Channel One, Humanzi, Director, On the Record’s Jim Carroll, Angela Dorgan, Twin Kranes, Dave Fanning and a dismal “interview” from the then minister for Arts, Tourism and Sport John O’ Donoghue whose on-camera refusal to answer questions does nothing to dispel the notion that the government couldn’t care less about popular Irish music.

According to Lindsey, she was warned “that by showing a certain individual in a bad light then I would be shooting myself in the foot because my film would not be accepted into film festivals or shown on TV. The Last Broadcast on RTE showed part of my film but refused to air the entirety, omitting the scene with this particular individual.I felt that the film would not prove the point I was trying to make if I left the scene out so I made the decision to keep it. Unfortunately I underestimated how much fear people have for this man. The power that he holds over funding for arts makes sure that he can maintain a good image. The only place my film was actually seen in its entirety was in Wales where it was a runner up in the Screen Academy Wales student awards.

So Lindsey had no choice but to release it on the internet.

Watch and discuss:

Part One

Part Two