Live Music Beyond Borders

“We see music and dance as a way through which people can connect to each other. We also believe in its ability to give joy to people and that it allows us to heal in a way that only music is able to do.”

How it all began...

When we were touring in Japan in October 2017 we played in a nursing home and a kindergarten. Both experiences left a deep impact on all three of us and we realised that we wanted to give more concerts in places where people have limited access to live music. That’s when the idea of our project Live Music Beyond Borders was born. We decided to bring our music to places such as nursing homes, kindergartens, refugee camps and community centers in Iceland, the Netherlands and Greece.

Live Music Beyond Borders becomes real

In June, July, August and September 2018 we gave concerts in places such as nursing homes, refugee centers, day center for people with mental health problems, shelter for women and schools for refugee children. The performances took place in Iceland, Netherlands and the Greece. We gave our concerts for free but to cover the costs of the project, such as travel costs, we ran a crowdfunding campaign.

Conclusion

During this project we were thrilled to see some of the effects live music had on our audience. People who sat silently before started to sing and move, especially if we played a song they knew by heart - or we simply saw a smile or some feet tapping to the rhythm of our music... or even a spontaneous dance!! And then there were also children, with sparkling curiosity in their eyes because of the sounds produced by these wooden instruments.

 

Besides the direct effects of music, this project also allowed us to get into contact with various amazing initiatives of people that set their minds to contribute to the wellbeing of other people’s lives, some of them working for years completely voluntarily! We met people who work in schools in Greece, in a nursing home in Iceland, or in a solidarity center in the Netherlands. They support and enrich the lives of children, the elderly or disabled, day, in day out. With their work they have a positive affect on lives of individuals and lives of entire families; allowing them to become communities.

Many of the people we played for were facing health, political, economical or social hardship but in each place we realised that in essence we are the same: we are all human beings who want to be safe, with a roof above our heads and food on our plates. And once we have those needs fulfilled, we also crave food for the soul.

Sometimes we wondered: “as musicians who are just passing...what can live music actually do?”

We also asked this question to people of the organisations we visited. The director of a care center in Athens told us this: “they know that you came especially for them, this is already very valuable to them”. We will present the results of all the interviews we had in a short video in the coming year.

 

We also made three newsletters - one per country - about the places we visited. These newsletters can be downloaded via the links below.

The kindergarten in Japan, where one of the seeds for Live Music Beyond Borders was sown.
Playing at Vin, a day center for people with mental health problems in Reykjavík.
Playing at City Plaza, a refugee accommodation in Athens.
Playing at Villa Vrede, a community center in Utrecht.
Newsletters:
Chapter III - The Netherlands