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Malawi Music Camp project impresses Music Crossroads

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Music Crossroads Malawi has said that this year’s Malawi Music Camp project lived up to its billing in that the participants learnt a lot and later showcased their talents.
Music Crossroads Malawi Director, Mathews Mfune, said the camp held at Music Crossroads Academy in Lilongwe ended yesterday on a high note with the battle of bands.
“Simply put, this year’s Malawi Music Camp project surpassed all our expectations. We are now looking forward to the next camp,” Mfune said.
The camp started on Tuesday and ended yesterday.
Mfune said five bands that were put together and trained by band managers from Peace Corps and Music Crossroads competed yesterday.
“The results were amazing. Many of the young people had their first experience on stage with professional sound set up and performing to an audience. We could see them in tears of joy and how quickly they gained confidence,” he said.
Mfune also said that the battle of the bands was spiced up by other performances from among others, Hear Us Children from Music Crossroads and Zathu Band from Girl Effect.
He said that all the performances on the day were also recorded live by Music Crossroads Recording Studio For Life 1 and that each participant went home with the recording on a flash disc.
The Malawi Music Camp is a collaboration project between Music Crossroads Malawi and Peace Corps that brings together 30 youth participants, half of which are a part of the Music Crossroads community and half coming from the Peace Corps volunteers sites into a week-long camp.
Mfune said during the camp, the participants are trained in Malawian music, songwriting, music structure, theory, stage performance, music entrepreneurship and copyright issues.
He also indicated that the students are put into bands and asked to arrange an original song around the chosen themes.
In addition to the music training, Mfune also said that the participants are also taken through other critical topics such HIV/ Aids, gender equality, climate change and women empowerment.
He said that for one to participate in this project he or she has to apply through Music Crossroads or Peace Corps and that selection process is undertaken to identify the deserving participants.
The project targets young musicians below 25 years old with great potential and aspiring to take music as a career adding that this is an annual programme that takes in equal numbers of girls and boys.
According to Mfune, this year they received a total of 105 applications from which 30 were selected to attend the camp.
“We had 15 girls and 15 boys from Mzimba, Rumphi, Mchinji, Dowa, Ntchisi and Karonga among others,” he said.
Mfune said the project has been running for the past eight years.
“We realise the great impact the project is having across the country in shaping the musical talents and future music professionals. This is the one project that goes to the villages and unearths raw talent that we are proud of,” he said.

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