Oreka TX wins the ‘Etxepare Euskal Institutua’ prize at the Musika Bulegoa Awards

Euskara. Kultura. Mundura.


The seventh edition of the Musika Bulegoa awards celebrated the achievements of 10 Basque musicians and groups. Held on 16 May at Lekuona Fabrika in Errenteria, the event also featured live performances. Oreka TX was awarded the Etxepare Euskal Institutua prize for their outstanding contribution in promoting Basque culture and bringing the txalaparta to a wider audience beyond our borders, gaining recognition from both the media and specialized critics.

Euskal Herriko Musika Bulegoa Elkartea (EHMBE, Music Association of the Basque Country) awarded work produced in 2022 by local artists, groups or as part of musical initiatives. The selection was made from 120 submissions.

The Musika Bulegoa Awards strive to highlight the importance of the Basque music industry, support artists by promoting their work, and serve as a platform to spread awareness and appreciation of their work. The event was attended by representatives from various institutions and over one hundred music industry professionals, including musicians, producers, managers, and programmers.

The jury, made up of eight industry professionals, awarded prizes to Merina Gris, Su ta Gar, Neomak, MICE, Inés Osinaga, Teresa Catalán, Enrique Solinis and Elena Setién. The winning projects were each awarded 2,000 euros and a sculpture designed by sculptor Fernando Mikelarena.

Kepa Junkera was honoured with the prestigious prize of honor by the EHMBE board of directors for his innovative approach in introducing Basque culture and language to the global stage. He creatively revitalized the trikitixa, a traditional Basque instrument, by infusing it with new rhythms, instruments, and styles. In this way, EHMBE also wanted to highlight the admirable 30-plus-year career of the trikitilari (trikitixa musician) from Bilbao, who has over 30 albums to his name. Kepa Junkera also received the Mikelarena sculpture.

At the awards ceremony, Amaia Ispizua, representative of EHMBE said: “What we have seen and heard today is a faithful reflection of the diversity of Basque music”. Ispizua praised the wide range of genres, rhythms and melodies represented at the 7th Musika Bulegoa Awards.

From a gender perspective, it is worth noting that five of the ten prizes went to women. Last year the number of submissions from women musicians increased to half. This year the trend in closing the gender gap has continued, with 42% of the submissions coming from women.

While three out of the ten entries represented the pop-rock genre, the Musika Bulegoa awards showcased an impressive array of musical styles including classical music, folk, jazz, electronic music, and fusion. Additionally, 70% of the works featured the Basque language as their primary medium of expression.

Hosted by Afrika Bibang and Jon Gómez, the awards ceremony featured live performances by four of the award-winning artists: Inés Osinaga, Enrique Solinis, Elena Setién, and Oreka TX. After the awards ceremony, DJ Ines gave a live performance.

In its 7th edition, Musika Bulegoa was supported in part by LABORAL Kutxa, the Department of Culture and Language Policy of the Basque Government, the Department of Culture of the Provincial Councils of Bizkaia and Gipuzkoa, the Etxepare Basque Institute, the Errenteria City Council, and Sympathy for the Lawyer.

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