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Fine Minds, 30 Oct 'Revolting Music: Songs of Protest in the Global South' by Neo Muyanga
Composer Neo Muyanga describes the role played by music in the national liberation struggles of India, South Africa, Brazil and Egypt in his lecture "Revolting Music: Songs of Protest in the Global South". Performing live and using archival sound material, he reflects on what sort of future there might be for revolutionary music in our time, a period marked by increasing cynicism about the possibility of change. Muyanga was born in Soweto in 1974 and sang in choirs before starting musical theory lessons at high school and then studying philosophy and the Italian madrigal tradition in Trieste, Italy. He co-founded the acoustic soul duo BLK Sunshine and generated hit songs including "Born in a Taxi" and "Soul Smile." His work features a syncretic fusion of the traditional harmonies and aesthetic modes of Basotho and Zulu music with Western classical music and jazz. In addition to operettas, cantatas and works for choirs, Neo has collaborated on several multi-media projects, including the Royal Shakespeare Company's 2009 production of The Tempest, and the 2015 operatic adaptation of Zakes Mda's Heart of Redness.