by Miguel Ortega
“We are born with creativity, we just need the space to develop it. It doesn’t matter if it’s perfect, but if we feel creative, we should be able to create something without fear or complex. Soy Música is such a positive learning for me, that after being in the workshops, I try to put it into practice at all times, with my family, friends, neighbors. This helps me to be a better person. Just open our minds and make a change in our lives.”Soy Música trainee, 2018
Working in places like El Salvador, we find ourselves, many times, in environments and communities where music has never been introduced before. Last February, the town of Suchitoto, was one of these places. Suchitoto has lived through the worst of the El Salvadoran civil war, it is presently a town that is striving to become a national cultural point of reference.
Arriving for our 3rd week of training with Soy Música program, with 35 teachers and facilitators, our aim was to encourage the trainees and participants to embrace creativity, while ensuring we rid ourselves of prejudgements and attitudes; our main focus was to empower the group to work together to tell their story through song.
It was our third time at this particular school in Suchitoto. Like many schools in the area, there was no music program, for many of the children, this would be their first musical experience. We opened a door to creativity and the students were quick to catch on, enthusiastically creating lyrics, melodies, and movements that told a story.
In a society that is still suffering from the effects of civil war conflicts, we know the importance of not only creating a space where the children are able to unleash their creativity but space where they can feel heard. Soy Música aims to bring social change and break the cycle of violence in the whole territory of El Salvador. Beginning with the teachers, we create spaces for creation, understanding and connection, space where our trainees are empowered to go through a personal change and later bring that change to others.