Magazine article The Canadian Music Educator

...-Ni Hao

Magazine article The Canadian Music Educator

...-Ni Hao

Article excerpt

It was in the wee hours of the morning, under cloak of darkness, that I embarked on the long journey to the real far east. St. John's Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada's Far east, having been my easterly point of experience until then. I was headed to Beijing, China, to experience the 29th International Society for Music Education World Conference from August 1-6th, 2010. Manifestations of the cultural shift I was about to experience foreshadowed in the flight's manifest and operations.

The largest ISME Conference ever held, the 29th attracted international delegates from around 65 countries and together with the Chinese music educators, was attended by 4,000 delegates. The theme of the event, 'Harmony and the World Future', was underscored in the opening ceremony. Created by the China Conservatory of Music, Colorful Silk Road was a large multimedia music and dancing concert; silk symbolically tying the multiple countries' and nations' colourful cultures together to form a cultural bond. The Silk Road no longer representative of China's historical silk routes but now symbolic of communications between various countries and nations in the world - profoundly significant in the promotion and development of global peace in today's world.

Both the high calibre and timely theme of the opening ceremony set the stage for the ensuing plenary sessions, symposia, workshops, poster sessions, research presentations, roundtables, and musical performances. Delegates were not disappointed as they were treated to three thought provoking keynote addresses given by Chen Yi (Distinguished Professor at the Conservatory of the University of Missouri-Kansas City, Changjiang Scholar Visiting Professor at the Beijing Central Conservatory of Music), Bruno Netti (Professor Emeritus of Music and Anthropology, University of Illinois) and Liu Limin (Director-General of Beijing Municipal Education Commission).

As the full impact of the reach, breadth and scope of the event can only be fully realized in person, I would offer the following snapshot of some highlights.

ISME National Affiliates (INAs)

Despite the global trek, Canada was well represented during the 29th ISME World Conference. A healthy registered delegation of 38 hailing from several parts of Canada.

As a standing component of the world conferences, ISME National Affiliates (INAs) are scheduled to host a meeting of their respective country's delegation to discuss ISME and/or national issues. With CMEA/Acme as the designated INA for Canada, and in my capacity as CMEA/Acme Past President, I served as Canada's INA representative and meeting chair.

In attendance were Andrea Rose, Ki Adams, Brenda Gatherall (NL), Lorna Wanzel (NS), Nancy Vogan (NB) Lois and Don Harper, Glen Carruthers, Sheelagh Chadwick, Leonid Sprikut, Michelle Chow, Kari Veblen (Ontario) Aleksandra Anderhoek, Kathy Robinson (AB) and Scott Goble (BC). Discussion topics ranged from housekeeping to more pertinent in nature. In seeking attendees' feedback regarding pending motions at the AGM, the question around the nature and designation of a country's INA was raised. Citing that CMEA/Acme was designated as INA for Canada in 1989 and the historical background leading to this designation, the following recommendations were put forward by the gathered delegates tor ISME's consideration: i) ISME outline how INAs are designated ii) ISME be more inclusive in their membership/INAs iii) ISME consider an electronic mechanism to enable all ISME members to east votes on ALL motions in and not just during hoard elections, and iv) ISME maximize their pending new website in promoting advantages to ISME membership.

It was during this meeting of the Canadian delegation and the concurrent meetings of the American and Mexican delegations that ISME members were updated on the outcomes of ISME North American Regional Seminar/Summit (INARS) in Anaheim (2010), outcomes being the commitment of the Mexican delegates to explore and establish their own national association for music/arts education and the then emergence of an ISME North American Regional Conference (INARC). …

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