THE MEETING PLACE OF ARAB & EUROPEAN MUSIC
Based on the belief that access to music is a fundamental human right and a factor contributing to the sustainable development of young people and our communities, Jeunesses Musicales International (JMI), the Cultural Movement EPILOGI of Limassol and the Arab Academy of Music (League of Arab States) have undertaken a joint venture to establish a Euro-Arab Youth Music Centre, in Limassol, Cyprus. The first of its kind, the Centre aims to improve cooperation among key stakeholder in the fields of youth and music and therefore enable an increased number of young people from European and Arab countries to participate in and create educational and social music programs that make a difference.
The EAYMC is the result in fruitful cooperation between the above mention partners, that started in 2005 with Ethno Cyprus a youth music camp bringing together young traditional/folk musicians from the two regions. The project continued with Ethno Cyprus in 2006 and 2008 (funded by Youth EuroMed and Cyprus Ministry of Education and Culture); Cyprus in Action in 2010 that brought together not only young musicians but also young cultural operators (funded by European Cultural Foundation) and finally, the Euro-Mediterranean Youth Music Dialogues from 2011-2012 (funded by EU “Culture 2007-2013” Programme). During the last project, the partners have co-organized the Euro-Arab Youth Music Forum in Amman, Capacity Building Training Courses in Amman and Barcelona and the Euro-Med Youth Choral Fair: Choral Crossroads 2011 in Limassol with a total of over 500 participants and attendance of over 5000 people, mostly young audiences.
As the closest EU country to the Middle East but politically integrated into European structures, Cyprus, and specifically Limassol, has a long tradition and strong cultural ties with the Arab world. Its geographical position between three continents makes it an ideal contact point that could provide necessary space for developing and supporting large-scale international projects. The Partners’ specific aims are to enhance the cultural activities and interaction among Eastern Mediterranean countries during the Cyprus Presidency of European Union in the second half of 2012. In the first phase of it’s development (2012-2015), the Centre will contribute to the creation of a sustainable network of over 100 organizations and companies on an institutional level, working with/for young people, specifically musicians and young audiences across the EU and Mediterranean; and involve in its mobility schemes of over 3000 young musicians and cultural organizers, music teachers and professionals on the program level, while reaching outreaching an audience of at least 20,000 people through concerts and festivals as well as communications and awareness campaigns.
The Centre’s Core Values can be summarized into three categories:A. Youth (Active citizenship and social integration; Personal development and empowerment),
B. Music (Access to music; Diversity of musical genres) and
C. Interculturalism (Intercultural dialogue and international cooperation; Peace, mutual understanding and tolerance)
Having a mutually agreed Ethical Code as a basis, the Centre will work with and for young people regardless of social, cultural or ethnic background, gender, language, race, and not for personal, political or financial gains. It will promote access to music as a fundamental human right where all young people should experience music through education and learning, or as audience, while stand for solidarity, cooperation, mutual respect and understanding. Every project it realizes, will aim to the highest artistic standards. Additionally, it will work with and accept funding consistent with the mission of the EAYMC, employing the highest standards of transparency and public accountability in all its programs, campaigns, financial management and fundraising practices. Every project the centre undertakes will be rooted in building cooperation, solidarity, respect and understanding among youth, and will aim to contribute to the active citizenship and social integration of youth.