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and computer workshop sets landmark
October 17, 2003
"Music + computer for future cultural heritage" at Binga ITC was
held by two composers, Klaus Hollinetz from Linz / Austria and Keith
Goddard from Harare. It started on Wednesday 17th September and
was ending with a short presentation of the outcome for the 3rd
Binga ITC stakeholders seminar on Saturday 20th September. Participants
were music teachers and artists from all over Binga area and from
as far as Bulawayo, Victoria Falls and Choma / Zambia.
was organised by Austria Zimbabwe Friendship Association in collaboration
with Kunzwana Trust, World Links and Horizon 3000 and was funded
by the Austrian Embassy in Harare.
The focus of
the workshop was on Ngoma Buntibe music with field recordings made
of a performance of the group Simonga at Siachilaba on the first
day. On the second day the recording of Simonga was then used to
go through the various steps of editing, which covered the analysing,
filtering and converting of the audio file to mp3 for uploading
onto the Internet. On the third day the audio material from the
field recordings in Siachilaba and from around the Binga ITC was
then used together to come up with a composition, which the participants
entitled "Konjila", which is Tonga for "come in".
that came up as a result of the workshop was that of notating the
Ngoma Buntibe Music as well as researching further on it. The workshop
and its results were regarded as highly relevant not only for networking
of artists and music teachers but also to provide them with the
most advanced tools to preserve and develop their music skills and
cultural heritage. As Keith Goddard has pointed it out in his report:
"For music and
computers – go to Binga ! Binga is also providing an important lead
for the use of computers as a compositional tool. The training provided
in the use of the new computer music workstation (brought in by
Austria Zimbabwe Friendship Association) was a first in Zimbabwe
and was offered to music teachers from four centres in the South
of Zimbabwe. The fact that this training could take place in Binga
is highly significant.
the course had some idea about what they wanted from the workshop
but their expectations were not only met but transcended. The production
of a small soundscape by the participants in under 3 days demonstrated
that concepts of electro-acoustic music production are not foreign
or bizarre to people outside contemporary music circles. Participants
expressed an interest in exploring matters relating to computers
and notation and a follow-up workshop is planned for next year which
will tackle matters relating to the representation of sound especially
in connection to the analysis and understanding of Tonga Ngoma Buntibe
music which, until now, using traditional techniques, has defied
accurate transcription. That the tools for this analysis are in
the hands of those who produce this music is highly significant.
The archiving of living culture was of particular interest to those
working in museums. The production of sound installations by music
students to accompany Binga museum exhibitions will soon become
a reality. No other museum in Zimbabwe has been offered this potential.
my belief that, in five years time, when people think about training
in matters relating to information technology and music, the first
thought that will come to mind will be "Let's Go to Binga".
to all participants and facilitators!
of the 3rd Binga ITC stakeholders seminar was to review the progress
of the Tonga.Online project so far, particularly its outreach and
extension. The advent of computers in Binga has not only contributed
to uplifting education but also provided better access to information
and communication for the community at large. Two more Telecenters
are in the project pipeline for Sianzyundu Secondary and Siachilaba
Primary School, where electrification is around the corner.
A music workshop
participant from Choma / Zambia, Patrick Mweemba, staged an exhibition
of some of his work at the Binga BaTonga museum.
A Design competition
was held at Binga ITC from April to June 2003, with a number of
objectives in mind:
- to promote
creativity and identify artists within the community and introduce
them to graphic design by computer
- to provoke
thought and ideas relating to the concept of mulonga and Tonga
- to offer
talented pupils and local artists the chance to show their work
on the website
- to improve
the general image of the centre by attractive wall paintings;
Tonga Online Project - www.mulonga.net
c/o Binga High School, P Bag 5722, Binga
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