31 July 2018

Namibia: Ann Singer Recounts International Music Education Conference

FRESH off a trip to Baku, Azerbaijan, where she performed and attended a world conference for the International Society for Music Education (ISME), Ann Singer met The Namibian to talk about her experience.

"I was looking for opportunities to perform overseas or just outside Namibia in order to grow my network and I stumbled across ISME online. I found out about their conference and that they were looking for performers to be part of the event. I applied in June 2017 and even forgot about it but I got positive feedback in February," Singer said.

The award-winning songstress performed at the conference, which took place from 15 to 20 July.

"They (ISME) spoke about the fact that they never had any Namibian artist take part in the event and they were very delighted to finally have someone from Namibia so they made me part of the African charter of ISME," said Singer.

She also made connections that led to her getting invited to other events, with one taking place in November.

When asked about the impression Singer made at the conference, secretary general of ISME Basak Gorgoretti said that it was a pleasure having her at the event, especially after seeing what she sacrificed to make it.

"It was a pleasure to meet Ann Singer in Baku at the 33rd ISME World Music Conference. Firstly Ann spent a big effort to come to Baku, she passed many steps such as becoming an ISME member, finding sponsors and (dealing with) visa procedures." Singer said that her presence at the conference was made possible largely because of financial assistance from the National Arts Council.

Gorgoretti appreciated her performance, saying: "Ann's performance was excellent, she sang three songs. I think two songs were the songs that she composed. She has a really beautiful and powerful voice. During her performance, she also made the audience accompany her and she taught a local song to the audience".

Participants from 60 different countries attended the conference. Many presentations, workshops and concerts took place and among all these different dimensions of the symposium, participants from different parts of the world also engaged in cultural exchanges. During the conference, music and dance were shared, taught, presented and learnt.

- rukee@namibian.com.na; @rukeeveni on Twitter

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