I’m Max, one of the five musicians who will be travelling to Zambia in August to work at the Ngoma Dolce academy. We have now had our first meeting between Muze and Estelle trustees, and the five of us travelling to Zambia in August. This meeting served to introduce all members of the project to each other, form a better understanding of its purpose, and start to understand how it might be acheived.
Paul Kelly, founder of the Ngoma Dolce academy, where we will spend most of our time, explained the mission of the academy, how it was formed, and its current stage of development. It seems that the majority of our time out there will be spent at the academy, working with the children, and also with the teachers to create ensembles to perform in concerts, and improve music teaching at the academy.
We had a lot of ideas bandied around, mainly based on what kind of ensembles could be formed. Alex is an established composer and so we hope that he may be able to write some music for performance or teaching once we are in Zambia and have a good sense of the standard of music.
In order to help create a lasting legacy, each member of the party is going to donate an instrument and, hopefully, some music to the academy. The intention is that this will be the first trip of many that will be made by student musicians to the academy. We may even be seeing students at the academy coming to the UK to give a concert at some stage. These are plans that we will be thinking about during our time in Zambia.
Our next meeting will probably be in Zambia. Anna and I fly out on 15th August so expect frantic updates after then. For now, enjoy a photo of the shard on a dreary day in London – hopefully we’ll have some sunnier photos from Zambia soon.