SLASH 2: The selection process
The Slash program selection occurred in January 2021 and was divided in two sessions. The selection work drew on a specific criteria grid as well as hours of listening and reading the applicants’ work.
1. First task: listen & read
After receiving all of the applications, the work began. The Slash team started on the one hand to dive into the reading of the 172 applications and on the other hand to create a playlist with all the candidates’ music to send to the jury, as a first preliminary work. As Coralie Le Falher, the Slash project assistant, was focusing on the main criteria, Chloe Nataf, the head of Slash project, evaluated the maturity of the projects and their matching — or not — with the program objectives.
The first selection round occurred on 12th January and came out with a pre-selection of 22 artists. The jury was composed of the Slash team, Chloe Nataf and Coralie Le Falher, Trempo’s musical programmer, Josselin Couteau and the booking agent from Via Production, Lola Chevallier.
Some of the main criteria were specified in the Open Call, such as the necessary ability to compose, produce, arrange or also to justify media coverage & presence on social networks. In addition, the grid used for the selection has been complemented with more detailed criteria:
» Criteria Grid
It took the jury a whole day to pick the 22 preselected artists.
“The work was also helped by the fact that we all had carried out a first listening of all the applications before. The applications were mixed, and that’s good. Rather of musical quality even if the diversity of nationalities and aesthetics was not easy.” Josselin
The main goal of this day was to spot the best applications regarding the criteria and to start to draw a “good” Slash team, that is to say, managing to gather different levels and development profiles, different aesthetics, different way of working.
Two other important criteria were kept in mind of this preselection jury: the gender parity (at least 4 finalists needed to be other than men) and the cultural diversity (at least 5 different nationalities from the European Union needed to be represented in the final selection).
3.The final selection
Before the final selection, the 22 preselected artists had to do a recorded short Skype interview of 10–15 minutes. Here are the questions asked to each of them:
- Can you introduce yourself and your artistic project(s)?
- Would you consider yourself as a Slash artist/musician? If you do, why?
- What are your expectations regarding this program?
- What do you think you can bring to the team and to the people who will take part in this program?
The goal of this short interview was first, to see if they could understand and speak English well, but this was also the opportunity for them to express their motivation and to explain how they act in a group work.
The final rendez-vous was settled on 22nd January in Paris, at the Sacem headquarters. The jury was composed of the Slash team, Eva Ménard, a visual and musical artist from the Collectif Opéra, Thomas Cocchini, member of the duo La Botanique and former selected artist of Slash’s ancestor: European Music Incubator, and finally, Julie Poureau and Alexandre Mahout from the Sacem.
The choices then became a little more complicated thanks to the preselection jury.
“The level seemed to me qualitative and appropriate in view of the Slash program. The pre-selection was well carried out in order to propose candidates in alignment with the intentions and the perspectives of the artists’ diversification. Finally, the presence of candidates from Eastern Europe (Romania, Bulgaria), where the music industry seems, in some aspects, less developed, proves that the Slash program got itself talked about.” Thomas
After 4 hours of debate on the 22 preselected artists, the jury finally had its heart set on 9 finalists.
“I find the selection relevant: different levels, different aesthetics, countries, ages… Different experiences that can be shared between them.” Eva
“I can’t wait to see this selection at work together” Josselin