A project by Lillehammer University College, Norway
Four members of the research team (Nisrine Lmariouh, Frank Bruun, Omar Aatabi and Pär Nygren) have now finished a four week long field work in Ait Abdi. In this first phase of our field work we have successfully started up two of our projects: 1) Children´s development of their every day practices and competences in the tension between tradition and modernity (including the Ipad-project) and 2) Children’s role in a Berber village household – a case study involving three generations. The field work was planned as a implementation and preparation of these projects as a base for the next phase of our field work starting in September 2014. Before that, Steinar Ofsdal and his students from the Norwegian Academy of Music will start up their project Young people´s cultural practices and identities in the tension between tradition and modernity in June.
Below we give a brief summary of what we have done during our field work in April-May:
As a part of the project Young people´s cultural practices and identities in the tension between tradition and modernity(see the project page), The Norwegian Academy of music, represented by professor Steinar Ofsdal, has developed an elective course for the students of the Academy called BERBER20. The course, having its location in Ait Abdi and other villages in Al Haouz, starts in spring 2015. The goal is to support the possibilities for young musicians from Norway and Alhaouz to learn form each other concerning how to preserve and strengthen traditional values and culture in a rapid changing society. To prepare for the activities in 2015 and to implement the course as a part of the umbrella project “Children in dreams of their competences”, professor Steinar Ofsdal and his four graduates from the folk music study, Sigrid, Kirsti, Tuva and Jon, visited Ait Abdi and Tahanaout in the period of 17.-22. June 2014. They did cooperate with three young traditional musicians from Al Haouz. This group of young musicians has been our project´s partners since 2012, as they went to the Førde festival as a part of the Talent 2012. The young musicians from Morocco and Norway met in Marrakech to practice new and old repertoire.
Here is Steinar Ofsdals report from the visit: In Ait Abdi the children in the school, who now has a summer vacation, were prepared to meet the musicians. They all met on Friday under the big trees, the meeting point in the village, and they were singing, dancing and playing together till 10 o´clock in the night, and had to return to their homes in the darkness. As a preparation for the coming elective course, the process was very successful. Since we all had the possibility to be together for a whole day, we all got closer together and built up a relationship of trust to the children. The girls, as quite often, were earlier to the activities than the boys, and they came up with a big repertoire of songs. Sigrid also taught them a Norwegian song with funny words, and they really enjoyed it and learned it. But later in the evening, the boys were encouraged to participate, not only listen, and then the big explosion came! Many of them proved to be very good drummers, and a big jam session started. The children also new more of the songs the musicians had prepared, and joined by singing and playing.
Next spring we will come to Ait Abdi with new music students, who now will do this as a part of their study. Students from folk music, jazz and classic will participate. The plan is to let our musician friends from Al Haouz first travel to another village in the region, to prepare the children on the meeting with the Norwegian group, by teaching them songs and drum playing. A week in the spring semester the Norwegians will come, and there will be days with singing, playing and dancing, with material from both Morocco and Norway.
On our Blog post page you can see pictures and watch videos from our visit in Marrakech and Al Haouz in June.