The world we live in

Together with Chiara Tamarro I was invited to organize with some students of the Prins Claus conservatory the event The World We Live In.

The World We Live In is a student initiative born out of our collective distress at the recent and continuing tragedies occurring in the world today.
With the constant news of war, displacement, violations of human rights, and many other disturbing and scary issues happening daily all over the world, it can be difficult for us all to fully process this information and our emotional responses. It can be hard not to simply desensitise ourselves in psychological defence to the bombardment of negative news and especially to feel as though we have the power to make any positive change in the world, by ourselves.
As musicians, we realised that we can surely use music and the arts to help bring some comfort to people at times like this; to express these feelings which are so difficult to communicate in words, to stimulate the emotions and the mind, and to bring people together. We feel that although we cannot do enough to truly, physically help or change the current situation from here, we can at least share something with our local and diverse community by coming together to create and share beautiful music, art, and ideas. Each artist to express what they feel is important to them – whether it be to commemorate, to raise awareness and stir empathy for certain groups of people or causes, or alternatively to recognise and celebrate the positive things which are happening in the world, big or small. A gathering in which we can share our sorrows and our joys – both to mourn together as well as to uplift and enlighten each other, in an event of mixed musics and arts inspired by these current humanitarian and world issues.

We wanted to include children with the event, but on a different day. So we came up with the idea to organize a childrensday at Minerva, where we invited children of a refugee camp and children of a primary school from Groningen to spend the afternoon making instruments with recycled materials, make a painting about the world we live in and make music. There where 30 children of the refugee camp, where five of them spoke dutch, and there where 20 children of the primary school from Groningen. It was really nice to see how these kids worked together, despite the language barrier and the different backgrounds.