Roskilde Festival World Music Award Goes to Dhow Countries Music Academy in Zanzibar

Roskilde Festival World Music Award goes to the music academy The Dhow Countries Music Academy in Zanzibar. The project receives the 30,000 euro award for its work on maintaining and developing the musical traditions in an area where cultural development is often relegated to the background because of more basic challenges.

It’s often with good intentions that cultural projects are launched in third world countries,” says Peter Hvalkof, booker of world music at Roskilde Festival, about the background for the choice of award winner. “But it’s harder running the projects over a longer period so that they can make that difference that was the aim to begin with. The Dhow Countries Music Academy draws attention not only because of its purpose and level of ambition. It’s also a professionally working organization that has proven its worth and managed to make a difference in its area.”

The Dhow Countries Music Academy offers music education for young Africans, has focus on the region’s thriving traditions and involves a wide range of locally rooted musical instruments.

The award worth 30,000 euro is much needed. The Dhow Countries Music Academy is fighting a constant battle to secure the means needed to keep the academy afloat.

Award presented during WOMEX

It is the second time that Roskilde Festival presents the Roskilde Festival World Music Award. The award is officially presented during the music conference for world music, WOMEX, in Copenhagen on Sunday 31 October, where Roskilde Festival plays an active role.

The international music event is a testimony of the diversity hiding behind the umbrella term ‘world music’, and it shows how to give both social and musical development aid by supporting projects such as the music academy in Zanzibar.

About Roskilde Festival World Music Award

Roskilde Festival World Music Award can be presented to a society or organization that works with creating musical development in locally based music genres – to ensure a cultural stepping-stone for children and young people in third world countries. The award is presented by the Roskilde Festival Charity Society on the background of recommendations from Roskilde Festival, WOMEX and EFWMF (European Forum of Worldwide Music Festivals).


WOMEX is the world’s largest international conference and expo for world music. It is a traveling event that is hosted by Copenhagen in 2009, 2010 and 2011. In 2010, Womex takes place 27-31 October. There is access for paying guests to about 50 showcase concerts. Tickets are for sale now through Billetnet, and the full program is available on

More information about the academy at:

Author: World Music Central News Department

World music news from the editors at World Music Central


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