Aga Khan Music Programme was established by Karim Aga Khan with the aim of supporting outstanding musicians and music teachers in preserving and communicating their musical heritage, developing it in contemporary forms and disseminating it worldwide through concerts and recordings. The programme initiates and implements country-specific action programmes to support the revitalisation and preservation of cultural heritage. Under this premise, special programme series in which outstanding renowned artists present new compositions, improvisations and arrangements of a repertoire strongly inspired by the respective tradition are developed, among other things. The programmes always represent artistic encounters between time-honoured traditions and contemporary forms, as a new generation of top-class musicians further develops and varies old musical traditions. The encounter of different cultures thus gives rise to a unique musical creativity.
The Aga Khan Music Programme strives with top-class musicians from the Near and Far East, Africa and the countries of the former Soviet Union to preserve the rich and varied heritage of classical music traditions from around the world and introduce them in Europe. From 15th to 17th February 2019, the Aga Khan Music Programme visited Germany for the first time, presenting the multi-faceted classical music of the Silk Road in four concerts at the Konzerthaus Dortmund, including a school concert. Renowned musicians, such as the Chinese pipa player Wu Ma, the Syrian composer and musician Basel Rajoub or Dutar and tanbur player Sirojiddin Juraev, combined music traditions of their countries with improvisation and borrowings from the Western jazz tradition in their performances. The multimedia concert Qyrq Qyz – Forty Girls reflected both musically and figuratively a centuries-old saga of Central Asia that could possibly change the Western view of women’s images of the East.
„Es ist nachhaltig beeindruckend zu sehen, welch schwindelerregend intellektuelle Leistungen klassischen Musikern in der Türkei, in Thailand und Java abverlangt werden.”
Michael Church, Old and New Music from the Ends of the Silk Route, 2016, 2
„Ein musikalisch hoch eindrucksvoller Abend, nicht zuletzt, um sich über das Fremde im Anderen und im eigenen Wesen klarzuwerden”
Eva-Maria Reuther im Volksfreund, 12.08.2019