UNESCO City of Music

since 2017

Capital city of the state of Michoacán in Mexico, Morelia (pop. 800,000) is a cradle of national classical and folk composers and musicians, and home to the oldest music conservatory in the country, Conservatorio de Las Rosas (Conservatory of the Roses). Morelia boasts a diverse music scene, which showcases ancient, colonial, classical and folk music as, well as electronic music assisted by the latest technologies. In recent years, musical events have been an important mainstay of the local creative economy, highlighted by a large audience of 800,000 during the festivals season, resulting in an economic income of more than US$19,083,969.

It is through its large musical programme that Morelia has built its reputation as a lively city of music. Since 1989, the Morelia Music Festival Miguel Bernal Jiménez has been a flagship event promoting internationally renowned artists, as well as musical education. The International Organ Festival of Morelia Alfonso Vega Nuñez is the oldest festival in the region dedicated to the pipe organ. With more than 50 editions, Jazztival Michoacán is the most important jazz festival in the centre-west region of Mexico and is considered as an important proponent of the country’s jazz culture.

In April 2017, the Secretary of Culture of Morelia was officially established in order to promote and develop further creative industries and cultural life in the city, with musical industry as a key priority. The Secretary particularly focuses on extending the cultural offering through cross-cutting initiatives and events. In addition, the 30 civil associations and private sector are joining forces by engaging in cultural promotion, multidisciplinary events organisation, enhancing the music industry through training activities for artists and cultural professionals.

As a Creative City of Music, Morelia envisages:
  • introducing the Apoyo a Coros y Orquestas lnfantiles Programme (Support Programme to Children Choirs and Orchestras) in marginalised and rural communities, promoting social inclusion, violence prevention and gender equality;
  • launching the Morelia Centre for Music Research and Documentation, promoting research and acting as information sharing platform for the music field;
  • establishing the Mexican Centre for the Creation of Cinematographic Music to link music and film sectors;
  • organising the Academic Symposium on Contemporary Music and New Technologies, involving other Latin American cities of the Network such as Medellin and Buenos Aires;
  • holding the First International Summit of Creative Industries of Morelia and engaging with other Creative Cities to share experiences and best practices; and
  • creating the Interdisciplinary Festival of Creativity, inviting artists and cultural professionals from all creative fields of the UCCN.