International Music Council

The International Music Council (IMC) is the world’s leading membership-based organisation dedicated to the promotion of the value of music in the lives of all peoples. IMC’s mission is to develop sustainable music sectors worldwide, to create awareness about the value of music, to make music matter in all social fabric, and to uphold basic music rights in all countries.

Five music rightsIMC was founded in 1949 at the request of the Director-General of UNESCO as a non-governmental advisory body to the agency on musical matters. It is based at UNESCO headquarters in Paris and functions today independently as an international NGO maintaining a formal partnership with UNESCO. In the course of its existence, IMC has developed into a highly influential network advocating for appropriate policies and practices aimed at strengthening the work of its members and partners worldwide.

IMC’s network is present in 150 countries on all continents, with national music councils and international, regional and national music organisations as well as specialised organisations in the field of arts and culture.

IMC members of honour are chosen among the world’s outstanding professionals, educators, performers and composers. Through its members, IMC has direct access to over 1000 organisations and 200 million persons eager to develop and share knowledge and experience on diverse aspects of musical life.  IMC programmes contribute to the development and strengthening of friendly working relations between all the musical cultures of the world on the basis of their absolute equality, mutual respect and appreciation.

IMC advocates access to music for all and champions in particular the provision of opportunities for every child and adult to exercise rights to learn musical languages  and skills, as well as to listen to, understand, perform, create and express themselves through music.

 IMC has proclaimed and works towards the advancement of five music rights:


The right for all children and adults

  • to express themselves musically in all freedom
  • to learn musical languages and skills
  • to have access to musical involvement through participation, listening, creation, and information

The right for all musical artists

  • to develop their artistry and communicate through all media, with proper facilities at their disposal
  • to obtain just recognition and remuneration for their work
Learn more here.

Last modified: Monday, 1 August 2016, 8:40 AM