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Music and development: Social inclusion and cohesion

Richard Letts moderated this session which introduced specific projects dealing with social inclusion and cohesion, further more he proposed a discussion around the idea of using music to go beyond social inclusion and archive empowerment.

María del Carmen Gil presented the Música 100x35 project based in Puerto Rico and influenced by the Venezuelan El Sistema model. Organised in partnership with several departments of the federal government, the project is based on the collaboration of public power and private space, which allows for the parents of the children who receive a musical education are also involved. Alongside music education, the programme also addresses ethical and spiritual issues and the diverse nature of the Música 100x35 programme has been responsible for successful long term social change. View the presentation here.

Presenting for Music Crossroad International, Dag Franzen pointed out the challenges needing to be addressed in order to empower young musicians in Zimbabwe, Malawi, Zambia, Mozambique and Tanzania. Despite these countries having a huge cultural richness, the lack of educational structure often prohibits the musician’s success. He illustrated the above mentioned problems with the story of the young African band Mokoomba, who won a talent contest but who were unable to claim the prize, a tour around European countries, due to visa problems.

The closing discussion showed the diversity of views concerning this issue of social inclusion and cohesion. Whereas the Music Crossroad International supports foreign help in African countries, some members of the audience criticized western intervention in foreign cultural markets due to its monopolizing character. Another point raised was that it is impossible to talk about Africa as a whole as it is more than natural that there are regional differences in development and culture. The discussion also turned to women’s right and emancipation, particularly a woman’s right to express herself freely in music itself as well as through performance.

Video of the Social inclusion and cohesion session

Photos by Vahur Lõhmus. All rights reserved.

Video by Marek Vilba. All rights reserved.


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