By GYNNIE KERO
A SHY Alison Naugru stands smiling, flute in her hand.
“Mi amamas long kam long Mosbi,” she says.
It was an eye opener for 15-year-old and 50 other young musicians from West Sepik.
The group’s first performance was a private concert for members of parliament who had gathered in Vanimo.
This month was the first time they would be out of their hometown, Vanimo, not to mention, perform in public places as part of the Independence celebrations.
The Queen of Paradise Orchestra was established in Baro village in August 2018.
A religious family from the Catholic faith started the orchestra and music school with 100 children initially.
That number decreased to 80 when strong discipline was enforced.
Children from four primary schools travel to the meetings after classes to learn music.
They were taught to read and write music.
Fr Miguel de la Calle says “our goal is to create a good person with values, not just a musician.”
Fr Miguel hopes the programme can be rolled out in other centers with help from government and business houses.
With Master Jesús Briceño from Caracas, Venezuela, towards the end of 2018, violin classes began.
Fr Miguel says other programmes introduced included musical language courses violin classes and the children’s choir.
A year later, viola, cello and double bass classes were also introduced.
In December 2019, the first string orchestra in the country officially debuted.
Master Jesús teaches all the instruments and directs the orchestra and choir.
While Sr Cielos Preabo teaches children the flute along with music theory.
Fr Miguel says the Port Moresby tour, the children are now ‘motivated’ and excited for the journey ahead.
He adds that’s the purpose of this project.
“It elevates a through the social, cultural, and educational aspects of their life.
“We seek to give these children the necessary elements for a healthy growth and human enrichment, being conscious that through musical education, we effectively collaborate in order that they may reach all of their personal potential and learn the values of life, in favor of their growth and dignity, despite the adverse circumstances of their life.”
On Wednesday (Sept 22) the group farewelled a senior member at his Wutung village.
He lost his life during their short stint in the city.
Every project comes with a price.
For the Queen of Paradise Orchestra, they need funds to sustain Master Jesús.
“We are seeking the aid to collect important human resources in order to continue developing the objective of our project. That is why we require professors of musical professionals in distinct orchestral areas. Currently, we count only on the presence of Master Jesús Briceño, who is the Musical director and violinist. Likewise, we require the economic assistance that would permit us to acquire all that the structural apparatus of this project involves.
The immediate objective is to consolidate the creation of the first symphonic children and youth orchestra of Papua New Guinea.
“We also need help to build our toilet and kitchen,” Fr Miguel says.