At the crossroads of Europe, the Mediterranean is also a gateway to the Festival. There, year upon year, a human and artistic adventure, unrivalled in the world of opera, is developing thanks to the increasingly rich interactions in this extraordinarily vibrant part of the globe.
— Training, vocational integration, creations, exchanges between artists and professionals: the Mediterranean project of the Festival d’Aix comes to life through its
intercultural dialogue. The Mediterranean Youth Orchestra (MYO) is the prime example, and the most emblematic. Created in 1984 and attached to the Festival in 2014, this atypical orchestra, supported since it was created by the Région Sud, Provence–Alpes–Côte d’Azur, relies on a network of partners, as well as a unique intercultural expertise. Thanks to this initiative, a hundred young musicians chosen from across the Mediterranean Basin gather every year at Aix-en-Provence for training and to perform together. Split into two sessions — one symphonic, the other for intercultural creation (the Medinea session) — the MYO actively helps young artists to exchange ideas and learn from each other. Their diversity allows them to imagine new creative horizons. In January 2020, the young and talented British conductor, Duncan Ward is appointed, for three years, very first music director of the symphonic session of the Mediterranean Youth Orchestra and will lead the young musicians until 2023, with the participation of instrumentalists from the London Symphony Orchestra.
— The Medinea (MEDiterranean INcubator of Emerging Artists) network is the second cornerstone of this major project. Created in 2014, it brings together different Mediterranean structures devoted to music, and focuses on intercultural initiatives that encourage dialogue; on the conveyance of knowledge; and on mobility in the Mediterranean. Centres of advanced training, festivals, cultural centres, and artists all come together to promote the professional integration of young musicians and various forms intercultural exchange, through discussions with professionals, workshops, and creative and educational projects. The Medinea network counts 27 members from 17 Mediterranean countries.