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Showing posts from March, 2012

Peace in Nepal: Hari Bangsha Kirant

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We live in uncertain times. This sentiment echoes through the photographs of Hari Bangsha Kirant, President of the UNESCO Clubs Federation of Nepal. His mission is to always strive for peace, and he speaks with great hope and appreciation for the road on which Nepal has had to travel to be where it is as a country today. "Nepal is working hard for peace and writing a new constitution."
When asked about the efforts towards peace in Nepal, Hari shares that there is pressure placed on the political parties in Nepal from the civil society and the media and this is where the change is happening. He shares that he has lived through four different political shifts in Nepal and believes that they are all equally inportant and have helped in the process of democratizing Nepal. He is very concerned with languages on the verge of extinction in Nepal and told our representative that the government was in the process of commissioning a language survey to be carried out soon. He share…

From Skin Drums to Innovation! Panorama Part 1

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We at Cultural Voice love to hear good Caribbean rythms and were delighted to be party to the finals of Panorama 2012 in Port of Spain Trinidad. The palpable energy of the patrons supporting the bands was engaging. Fans followed favourite bands from point of entry on one side of the Queens Park Savannah to their departure, truly embracing the participation of all in this experience. To share this experience with you we thought it fitting to do a bit of google research on the development of Panorama. In this first blog on Panorama we share our findings with you... 

Although Panorama was officially launched in 1963 by the government of Trinidad and Tobago and the National Association of Trinidad and Tobago Steelbandsmen (NATTS), the origins date centries before. In the 19th Century, Carnival celebrations were primarily linked to the beating of skin drums. However, with the imposition of a ban on drum beating imposed in 1884 players turned to bamboo to produce sounds, leading to the prol…

Days in the Lives of Jamaicans: Garfield Ellis Writes History

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One can only assume that someone's favourite song gives key insight into the frame of mind and the style of that individual. Garfield Ellis, Jamaican writer of 5 books, 3 novels and 2 collections of short stories shared his favourite song with us.

Nature Boy - Duane Stephenson speaks of humanity's losing sight of what is most important to our existence. With lyrics such as  "Millions for guns and bombs, and making trips to Mars, Nature Boy is this your great vision of democracy..." there is a definate sense of holding ourselves accountable for how we act in the world.


Garfield Ellis, a positive force in the literary landscape has made it his mission to write the histories of Jamaicans in an effort to provide lasting memories accessible to the world. He focuses on everyday Jamaican life.  At "Love Affair with Literature" hosted by the Department of Literatures at the University of the West Indies, Ellis shared passages from his Novel "Till I'm Laid…

Ever Heard of Koogere the Great Female Ruler and Entrepreneur of Western Uganda's Oral Tradition?

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Contributor: Akugizibwe Solomon
Within the Koogere oral tradition there is a popular story describing successes of a reign of a great woman ruler and entrepreneur called Koogere who was a chief of Busongora chiefdom in the ancient Kitara Empire during the Batembuzi dynasty about 1500 years ago.

The Batembuzi Dynasty
Batembuzi means harbingers or pioneers. The Batembuzi and their reign are not well documented, and are surrounded by a lot of myth and oral legend. It is believed that their reign dates back to the height of Africa’s bronze age. The number of individual Batembuzi reigns, as given by different scholars, ranges from nine to twenty one.


Kitara was the biggest African empire south of the Sahara, stretching from Madi and Bukidi present day Eastern Uganda to Karagwe in Northern Tanzania and Ituri and Bulenga both in the present day Eastern part of Democratic Republic of Congo. The story is told among the communities of former Bunyoro and Tooro Kingdoms and mainly Busongora (Kas…

"Cinti" shares on TT Carnival, NYC Dance Life and World Peace!

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Cynthia "Cinti" Salandy
There's lots to talk about when you have the opportunity to sit with Cynthia Salandy! We caught up with Cynthia while on location in Trinidad and Tobago for 2012's Carnival! Certainly something Cultural Voice recommends as a must-do for all our readers!




Cynthia, affectionately known as "Cinti" is the Associate Director of Something Positive, a dance company based in NYC, started dancing at age 17 in Diego Martin, Trinidad. Her career started through the community based programme called "Best Village" and all the different communities in and around Trinidad would compete for bragging rights and a trophy.

Best Village

"The programme seeks to preserve, protect, and build on our Folk Traditions, and to facilitate the growth of our national culture through competition"  (tt connect)-  More Info on Best Village Competition

 'Tribe' and 'Yuma' - Diluting the cultural relevance of carnival?

"Cinti&quo…