senegalese star Youssou N’Dour to deliver keynote at 4th IMC World Forum

The organisers of the 4th International Music Council’s World Forum on Music

announced that world-renowned Senegalese singer Youssou N’Dour has accepted to

share with the Forum participants his reflections on the Forum’s overall theme

“Music and social change”. In his keynote on Tuesday September 27th, Youssou N’Dour

will address the role of culture in general and music in particular as a vehicle

for building tolerance, dialogue and understanding.

Singer, percussionist, songwriter and composer, Youssou N’Dour has associated

himself with several social and political issues. In 1985, he organized a concert

for the release of Nelson Mandela. He was a featured performer in the 1988

worldwide Amnesty International Human Rights Now! Tour. He has also worked with the

United Nations and UNICEF and he started Project Joko to open internet cafés in

Africa and to connect Senegalese communities around the world.

Youssou N’Dour helped to develop a particular style of popular music in Senegal,

known in the Serer language as mbalax. Youssou’s mix of mbalax with eclectic

influences ranging from Cuban samba to hip hop, jazz, and soul has won him an

international fan base of millions.

In June 2011 Youssou N’Dour received an honorary degree from Yale University. Yale

President Richard Levin saluted N’Dour for having “created Africa’s leading

ensemble, performed with great artists around the world, sung about tolerance,

acted with conviction, all the while remaining true to (his) own faith and

culture”. He also stressed N’Dour’s understanding of the power of music to

liberate, heal and unite, his extraordinary sound giving “voice to hope and our

common humanity”.

“The IMC community feels deeply honoured to see the 2004 Laureate of the IMC-UNESCO

International Music Prize backing the 4th IMC World Forum on Music. Given Youssou

N’Dour’s commitment to music and its role in society, we believe that his keynote

will significantly add to the overall impact of the Forum”, said Silja Fischer, IMC

Secretary General.

300 participants from some 70 countries and six continents are expected to gather

in Tallinn; most of them fulfill an important multiplier function as they are

representatives of national, regional and international networks.

Registration is open at!

4th IMC World Forum on Music

Presented by the International – European – Estonian Music Councils


International Music Council

Maison de l’UNESCO

1 rue Miollis

75732 Paris cedex 15


Tel. +33 1 45 68 48 50

Fax +33 1 45 68 48 66


Author: Angel Romero

Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music music for many years. He founded the websites and Angel produced several TV specials for Metropolis (TVE) and co-produced “Musica NA”, a music show for Televisión Española (TVE) in Spain that featured an eclectic mix of world music, fusion, electronica, new age and contemporary classical music. Angel also produced and remastered world music albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World.


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