The LRC at the Bridges for Music Academy in Langa
And now for something very different… Dawn Garisch and Ian Bell go to Langa to teach memoir at the Bridges for Music Academy. Ian tells the story:
“The Blues is not only an art form of African origin, but without it, there would be no jazz, no rock and roll nor a vast swathe of popular music of many genres. It also happens to have been the only means of creative expression of a people who were downtrodden and largely illiterate, capturing their own life experiences in song, a form of memoir.
I was delighted, therefore, to be invited along with Dawn, to present a memoir writing course for students at ithe Bridges for Music Academy in Langa. Dawn presented the memoir writing side of things and I gave a slide-presentation on the Story of The Blues, and also played songs on my guitar.
We were very well received and clearly, if the wonderful feedback is any measure, made a significant impact with the LRC’s message about the value of writing as regular creative practice. The students were both inspired and inspiring as they captured and shared insights into their lives. It was wonderful to witness their enthusiasm and the changes in facial expressions as their awareness grew of an ability to write their own life stories and there followed much useful discussion of the benefits.
It was a gratifying experience to hand on the baton in this way and keep alive this rich, vibrant, elemental human story; that out of hardship, cruelty and deprivation of the worst kind should come this music of transcendent beauty.”