Press release / 10 March 2023

SXSW 2023: GEMA presents showcases and sessions on an international stage

GEMA is hosting two initiatives at the annual international music festival South by Southwest (SXSW) in Austin, TX, which runs from March 10 to 19, 2023. With its digital distribution subsidiary, Zebralution, GEMA will be holding public discussion sessions at the German House on the topics “Fairness in music streaming” and “Neighboring rights”. Meanwhile, for its #GEMAStage at the Parish on March 16, GEMA has scheduled a strong line-up including Brandt Brauer Frick, Kalush Orchestra and electronic legends Tangerine Dream.

Once a year in March, the international creative community converges on Austin, TX, at the South by Southwest Festival & Conference – SXSW in short. In addition to the music festival with more than 1,000 artists from around the world, there are conferences and sessions from the music, design, film and new media sectors extending across ten days.

For the first time this year, GEMA is an Official Presenter, with its own showcases on the #GEMAStage at the Parish Club and two discussion panels at the German House.

This is a logical step. GEMA is an experienced stakeholder in the international music rights market. Since foundation of the international licensing platform ICE (International Copyright Enterprise) it has been licensing music rights for online use in over 130 countries, with its partners PRS for Music (UK) and STIM (Sweden). 
“GEMA is not an unknown factor in the American music marketplace,” explains Dr. Tobias Holzmüller, General Counsel at GEMA. “There, the players are following the development of European authors’ societies into global actors for licensing services with great interest. They're right to, because, with ICE, we're licensing US songwriters' rights in many countries.”

“GEMA is not an unknown factor in the American music marketplace.” – Dr. Tobias Holzmüller, GEMA General Counsel

March 14 at the German House: focus on fairness in the streaming market and on neighboring rights

GEMA's March 14 discussion at German House, will look at the question “Music Streaming: Are We Fair Yet?” focusing on fair participation for creators in the music streaming process. Dr. Tobias Holzmüller, one of the GEMA attendees, says, “GEMA has been asking for more fairness and transparency in the streaming market for quite some time now. Of course, this affects not only the German market but also the global music business. SXSW is therefore an ideal platform to push the discussion forward.” SXSW legend and CEO of CrossBorderWorks in LA, Vickie Nauman, will chair the discussion.

In a second session, GEMA, with its subsidiary Zebralution, will address current challenges with respect to managing neighboring rights. The discussion panel “The Neighbors Have Money For You: Neighboring Rights Now” will be hosted by Robert Levine, Deputy Editor-in-Chief at Billboard Magazine.

March 16 at the #GEMAStage: Tangerine Dream return to the US 

For its #GEMAStage GEMA has booked a unique lineup of German talent, with Tangerine Dream, the longest-standing electronic band in the world, headlining. It'll be their first gig in the USA in around a decade.

The full lineup is: Tangerine Dream, Roosevelt (DJ Set), Brandt Brauer Frick, Desire, and Kalush Orchestra. The gig starts at 8:00 pm at the Parish, 501 Brushy Street, Austin.

Learn more about GEMA at SXSW 2023


In Germany, GEMA represents the copyright for over 85,000 members (composers, lyricists and music publishers), and over two million copyright owners from all over the world. It is one of the largest societies for creators of musical works in the world.

Press materials:

Press photo Dr. Tobias Holzmüller (c. Florian Jaenicke | JPG | 3,1 MB)
Press release in German (PDF | 66 KB)
Press release in English (PDF | 63 KB)


Press contact:

Ein Portrait von Ursule Goebel, Pressekontakt der GEMA.
Ursula Goebel
Director of Communications
+49 89 48003 426
Porträt von Nadine Remus
Nadine Remus
Head of Corporate Communications
+49 89 48003 583