Fairouz Nishanova

Session 7, Saturday 14th, 1:30-3:00 pm
Session 8, Saturday 14th,3:20-4:50 pm
Location: University of Alberta, Centennial Centre for Interdisciplinary Science, Room 1-140

Revitalizing Tangible and Intangible Cultural Heritage


This panel discussion is presented in collaboration with and curated by the Aga Khan Music Initiative (AKMI), a program of the Aga Khan Trust for Culture and features artists and music created within the framework of one of Initiative’s newest projects, New Sounds from Arab Lands.
The AKMI is a music and arts education program with performance, outreach, mentoring, and artistic production activities worldwide, launched by His Highness the Aga Khan to support talented musicians and music educators working to preserve, transmit, and further develop their musical heritage.
The session will feature a discussion with Ms. Nishanova, Director, AKMI; Theodore (Ted) Levin, Professor of Music at Dartmouth College and Senior Project Consultant for the Music Initiative; and, a presentation by the musicians from New Sounds collective – cosmopolitan artists and composers from Syria and Tunisia whose music is inspired by the rich cultural heritage of the Arab lands but often uses instruments that are not native to the Middle East.

Panel Discussion
How can development agencies build synergies between the revitalization of tangible and intangible cultural assets to create integrated development strategies? What role can cultural heritage revitalization play in shaping both urban and rural landscapes and soundscapes?

Fairouz Nishanova is a cultural development specialist with a lifelong love of performing arts, music and dance that embraces the many styles and traditions of the lands where she has lived, worked, and traveled. Born in Sri Lanka to Uzbek parents, she grew up in Amman, Jordan and studied economics, history and international relations at Moscow State University and the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). Ms Nishanova began her career at the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation and continued at the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe. Ms Nishanova joined the Aga Khan Development Network in 2000 has served as Director of the Aga Khan Music Initiative at the Geneva-based Trust for Culture since 2005. The Aga Khan Music Initiative is an inter-regional music and arts education program with worldwide performance, outreach, mentoring, and artistic production activities. The Initiative designs and implements a country-specific set of activities for each country into which it invests and works to promote revitalization of cultural heritage both as a source of livelihood for musicians and as a means to strengthen pluralism in nations where it is challenged by social, political, and economic constraints.

Besides running AKMI, Ms. Nishanova is closely involved in AKDN’s inter-agency activities on social and cultural development.

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