"Musicians Society TORNIS" -

Latvian non-profit organisation "Musicians Society TORNIS"

"Musicians Society TORNIS" or "TORNIS" was founded in the end of 1998 in Riga, the capital of Latvia. This is a non-profit NGO the main goal of which is to support Latvian unsigned / independent / underground music bands and artists. We are going to reach the aim by organising seminars and courses for artists, advertising all activities and events of independent / underground scene, by supporting the press and publicity for this theme, explanation and propaganda of such kind of art to the public, by obtaining and distributing the information about the activities free-of-charge.
The NGO "TORNIS" was founded on the basis of 8 years long running unofficial / non-registrated society / commune of several Riga's underground music bands TORNIS or TORNIS rec. TORNIS rec. was is a music label (since 1991 we have produced over than 70 cassettes and cd's), concert and festival organisation and we were the first Latvian music label who had an Internet homepage (since beginning the of 1996). We have built a record studio and rehearsing place for bands.
Playing and producing music we have experienced really huge obstacles and barriers because of the non-commercial character of our art (not just music, but also live performances, cassettes cover art, ideology, etc.). There are two main reasons:
1. general commercialisation of Latvian culture;
2. the small number of Latvia's population ( app. 3 mill.), which strictly means that in Latvia there is no future for any non-commercial art without support from outside.
On the base of our experience we decided to establish an officially registrated NGO which could help us and all Latvian independent / underground music scene.

At this moment we are working hard on such projects:
(right now we are on the way to reconstruct the old TORNIS rec. page which has been running since beginning of 1996. In the renovated page there will be all co-ordinates of Latvian unsigned / independent artists, scenes news, free homepages for bands, links to bands, labels, organisations' existing www pages, different databases of Latvian independent music, etc.)
o Encyclopedia of Latvian independent / underground music
(on our www page, on CD-ROM, on paper)
o Archive of music
(this project is related to the work on Encyclopedia and will be presented also on the Internet, but the main sources will be on CD's, available through our or / and public library)
o Brochure (available on paper and on the Internet) on basic questions about Copyright
(this could be our first finished project - a free information booklet about basic questions on copyright subject for musicians)
o Information and Support CENTER for Unsigned Artists

We're new organisation and at the very beginning of our work. Thanks for attention,
sincerely yours
Janis Daugavietis