Instrument Building And Repair
Expertise in traditional instrument building and repair
African music is influenced by a variety of traditional instruments. However, skills in instrument building and repair are mainly spread among the older generation and there are hardly any professional specialists. The Music In Africa Foundation initiated the project “Instrument Building And Repair” to impart expertise and strengthen the professionalization of instrument building.
Workshops on instrument building and repair
Within the project, professional instrument builders hold workshops for participants from various African countries. Since 2015, these workshops have been providing knowledge about traditional instruments such as the marimba or the umakhweyana.
Key objectives of the Instrument Building And Repair Workshops
- Professionalization of traditional instrument building
- Exchange of ideas, expertise, experience and know-how among instrument builders in Africa
- Transfer of knowledge and skills of local instruments between younger and older generations
- Identification of existing knowledge gaps with the aim of introducing new solutions
Workshop 2020 in Gauteng
The workshop 2020 took place in Gauteng with 20 participants from South Africa under consideration of the special coronavirus circumstances. It focused on the construction and repair of the mbira and the string instrument kamale ngoni.
In order to spread knowledge about traditional instrument building in the long term, Siemens Stiftung encouraged the production of tutorial videos. This initiative was a project within the International Aid Fund 2020 for Organizations in Culture and Education of the German Federal Foreign Office and the Goethe-Institut.
„It’s important to learn the history of every drum and every string that is embedded in Africa.“
To conclude the Instrument Building And Repair Workshop 2020, Music In Africa presented the concert “Vibrations – A Celebration of African Instruments”. Musicians such as Pops Mohamed, Morena Leraba, Sibusile Xaba and Buhlebendalo performed.