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Music as a Global Resource: - International Council for Caring ...

Music as a Global Resource: - International Council for Caring ...

SECTION:

SECTION: Music for Sustainable Community Development COUNTRY: South Africa PROJECT: MUSIC INVESTMENT PROJECT FOR AT-RISK YOUTH: EASTERN CAPE PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA DESCRIPTION: In 2002, following a grant from the National Lottery Distribution Trust Fund, the Eastern Cape Philharmonic Orchestra‘s (ECPO) Music Investment Project (MIP) was founded. The main focus of this project is to offer children, through the power of music, alternatives to street life and crime and to open possibilities to escape a future of joblessness and poverty. The goals of the MIP are: Engage as many learners as possible from disadvantaged communities in a rich mix of musical experience Create opportunities for the participants of the project to experience the world from a new perspective and offer an alternative to crime and a feeling of hopelessness Creatively stimulate as many young township learners as possible, keep them meaningfully occupied and in the process develop life skills, confidence and leadership qualities Take learners to the limit of their abilities by investing in a new generation of young musicians and audiences with an ongoing education programme in which we offer the exploration of a range of music-making activities and music appreciation Extend the musical horizons of previously neglected music lovers, participating learners, their families and the community in which they live and thereby give them an equal opportunity to escape from the doldrums of township life and be exposed to quality performance opportunities Grow a music programme to reflect the music diversity of our nation and ensure that traditional African and South African composed music takes its rightful place Prepare young learners for possible careers in the music industry Develop a sustainable music infrastructure on a long term basis Grow the music capacity of music teachers and music learners in our region The discipline, work ethic and vision shaped through musical training turns the learners into responsible, hard-working citizens. The project uses the school facilities of three schools in disadvantaged areas as teaching venues. Seven full-time and five part-time teachers are employed to teach almost 550 learners on recorders, orchestral instruments, and in choirs. Learners are entered for music exams with all the recognised examining bodies. The project is not wholly focused on creating musicians, but on opening a variety of possibilities, which include opportunities throughout the whole music industry as well as service projects to the community. Families benefit by being part of their children‘s development, growth and success and are provided with transport and tickets to ECPO concerts. The Project also reaches elderly, disabled and disadvantaged members of the community through ensemble concerts performed by members of the orchestra at institutions, schools and children‘s homes. The Youth Orchestra Experience (YOE), an annual course which takes place during the fall holidays, is run by the MIP to provide an opportunity for learners who do not have equal access to the South African National Youth Orchestra because of a lack of musical or financial resources. This is, to our knowledge, the only provincial orchestra course in the country that 10

serves as a learning experience to prepare learners for participation in the National Youth Orchestra and also serves as preparation to become a member of the ECPO. The YOE has taken place annually for the last eight years. In this time it has improved the skills and experience of young musicians to a level where many have qualified for participation in and sponsorship for national courses and workshops. Approximately 45 percent of the learners who qualify for the YOE are from disadvantaged communities, and have developed their skills through the MIP. YOE provides a learning opportunity to train future musicians for all genres of music. CURRENT STATUS: The Eastern Cape Philharmonic Orchestra (ECPO) is a Section 21 company, managing a parttime orchestra. In 2002, following a grant from the National Lottery Distribution Trust Fund, the ECPO's Music Investment Project was founded. Costs associated with the venture include fees, flights and accommodation for orchestral instructors; food and refreshments for the learners attending; music hire, venue hire, transport, publicity and programs. RESEARCH AND EVALUATION: Questionnaires completed by the participants each year are analyzed, to ensure that high standards are maintained. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: http://www.ecpo.org.za/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=4&Itemid=5 http://www.classicsa.co.za/site/features/view/ecpo_music_investment_project_offers_inspiration/ CONTACT INFORMATION: Organization: Eastern Cape Philharmonic Orchestra Music Investment Project Address: PO Box 12148, Moffat Place, 6002 Port Elizabeth, South Africa Phone: +27 41 5817747, +27 82 2555194 Contact person: Judy Speyers, Manager Email: ecpomip@iafrica.com 11

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