Music and television in France, past and present

Broadcast programmes
By Théo Briont

The extension of music (both classical and contemporary) from concert halls, records and the radio to television raised questions about programming, musical competencies, orchestras, technical resources and production, as well as questions about ties with different musical milieus (including composers and musicians) and with audiences. A marriage of reason gradually took shape. Moreover, this was also the case for other musical genres. Little by little, certain individuals stood out due to their ability to plead the cause of music within television channels and to audiences. Then, as audience figures became more important, concert performances and new musical creative works were relegated to late time slots on most channels, whereas the markets for cassettes, videos and DVDs grew. However, this music has recovered some of its previous standing on television thanks to streaming and online channels. Lastly, by comparing France with other countries, we will examine television’s place in musical culture and the changing cultural responsibilities that the French government ascribes to television channels.

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