CPO’s Masidlale Music Project

The Cape Philharmonic Orchestra has chosen Cape Town’s most iconic symbol – its famous mountain – as the place for the formal launch of the wide-reaching and exciting Masidlale initiative for the training of young strings players.

The guests of honour at the launch of the Masidlale Music Project on Table Mountain will be children already involved in the project, from Nyanga and Gugulethu townships in Cape Town.

“The CPO’s Development and Outreach programme started these Masidlale satellite teaching centres in 2009 in the townships, teaching the children instrumental skills using the Suzuki method. This training takes place irrespective of financial means or background,” explains Karin Blumer, Corporate Affairs and Fundraising Executive of the Orchestra.

Because 15 years of intensive training is needed to become a professional musician, it is crucial that training starts at grass-roots level to ensure a pool of potential new instrumentalists representing our diverse cultures to feed the professional orchestra.

The projected outreach to another eight schools the next three years will amount to 400 new musicians sourced and prepared annually to eventually become members of the Cape Philharmonic Youth Orchestra. “With further training and experience, some could in due course to be considered as members of the CPO or other full-time orchestras,” Ms Blumer continues.

The main target group of Masidlale is the youth from communities that have thus far been excluded or without financial means to participate in professional training in classical music.

Ms Blumer also points out that these young musicians and their families are likely to become the future stalwarts and patrons to nurture and promote the arts in their communities. Masidlale also “creates new employment opportunities by training facilitators from the townships in the Suzuki method and appointing them as part-time violin teachers.”

She adds that the Orchestra is grateful for the support of its major sponsors and supporters – such as the National Lottery Distribution Fund, the Department of Arts and Culture, the Provincial Government of the Western Cape, the City of Cape Town as well as several corporate funders, trusts and foundations – to make important development programmes such as these a reality.

The Chief Executive Officer of the CPO, Louis Heyneman, says that Masidlale will contribute towards “creating sustainable growth in a waning classical music industry. In general children are not encouraged to follow a career as musicians, due to the inconsistence and low rate of job opportunities and remuneration levels.”

He adds that classical music cannot compete with popular commercial trends and has to create a niche in the ‘young’ popular scene where it becomes ‘en vogue’ to be an accomplished musician and part of a classical music concert audience.

Attendance to the event is by invitation only.

For more details about the activities of the CPO, visit the website athttp://www.cpo.org.za

Potential sponsors may contact Karin Blumer at 021 410 9826 or e-mailkarin

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