In The City - The Basics:
In the City Days - Getting Down to Business:
During the day, the focus of In The City is on the business side of things. There are various panel discussions taking place at any given time and attendees generally move from panel to panel depending on their interests. Some panels are set up for industry old hats to teach the basics to up and comers and other panels are forums for debate on the issues of the day facing the music business. There's ample time for both question and answer sessions and plenty of arguing about the future of the business. Attendees also usually take the day to track down contacts and work out new business relationships.
In The City Night - Europe's Largest City Based Music Festival:
If the days at ITC are all about the business, the nights are all about the music. The festival hosts bands in venues across Manchester - in fact, they put on so many shows that ITC is now Europe's largest city based music festival. There are label showcases for attracting the attention of the media, agents and so on, and there are unsigned bands also playing, hoping to land a record deal. ITC has a reputation for being very discerning with the bands they invite to play, and the festival has been responsible for launching many a career.
Should You Go To In The City? :
If you're based in Europe, ITC should absolutely be on your calendar, especially if you are indie band or label. It's a very friendly trade show for indies and is a great place to pick up contacts and advice. There's also a passion about music at ITC - it's attended by so many people who first and foremost work in music because they love it, which is not always what you get at music industry trade shows - and for this reason, it's an exciting event to attend. If you're outside of Europe, clearly it can be costly, so you should weight the cost versus your preparedness to take advantage of the opportunities there.
Playing at In The City:
If you want to apply for a show at In The City, the best place to start is their website. They accept both online submissions and physical copy demo submissions to their offices. In 2008, international bands could apply via Sonicbids for a chance to receive a travel stipend to cover their costs if accepted.
Attending In The City:
If you wish to attend ITC, again the best place to start is the website. Keep in mind that there are usually several phases of registration, with the price increasing after each deadline passes, so if you know in advance you want to go, sign up early.