The origin

The idea to set up a large Malagasy musical ensemble was born on a train, in Sweden, during a Justin Vali tour…

For centuries, musicians in societies known as traditional have reinvented, reshaped, recreated their heritage, in light of their sensibility and the necessities of the social group. Now, at a time when the social and economic circumstances are very different from the patterns of the past, the musicians still ask themselves the same question: how can they be a part of that amazing heritage while asserting their difference?

Why a Malagasy orchestra?

Creating a Malagasy orchestra means investing the field of the re-creation of a heritage by a new generation of musicians.

Creating an orchestra means gathering musicians, strong personalities living on the island for a summit meeting of Malagasy music. It means testifying to the richness of the various traditions of the island, revisited by some of today’s great performers and creators, within one ensemble.

It means drawing more attention to traditional instruments that are still unrenowned abroad (jejo voatavo, valihas, traditional percussions, flutes, kabossy, mandolins…) and discovering other instruments that have not yet been listed among the 54 instruments already recognized by ethno-musicologists…

t also means taking part in an economic process, since the production line of such a project summons many partners (producer, video director, sound recordist, record producer and distributor, distribution manager, booking agent, production manager, sound engineer…).

It means wanting to testify – through the distribution of the orchestra’s concerts – to the incredible musical richness and to the abundance of talented individuals in the heart of Madagascar, in order to grant the Malagasy “continent” the artistic recognition it deserves beyond its borders.

Long-term goals

1. To create an internationally recognized orchestra. To get the international community to discover and recognize the richness of Madagascar’s musical heritages.

2. To provide a strong economic foundation by means of regular tours in Madagascar, in the Indian Ocean and in the rest of the world for the next ten years.

3. To develop concerts aimed at young audiences in Madagascar’s schools, junior high schools and high schools, in order to work with schoolchildren on early learning and awareness.

4. To build or renovate a space in Madagascar dedicated to the musical customs related to the oral tradition of the Great Island. That space would include a music library (audio and video anthologies of Malagasy music), a rehearsal space for courses, masterclasses and concerts, and a museum of the island’s instruments.

The materialization of that space may form part of a decentralized cooperation agreement between a town in Madagascar and a town in France.