Music is a great way to foster social cohesion and nation building. This is the basis upon which Music is a Great Investment (MIAGI) was established by opera singer, Robert Brooks and pianist, Ingrid Hedlund in 2001.
This is a Pretoria based Non-Profit Organisation with a vision of bringing people, particularly children and youth, together through music while creating platforms for creativity, self-expression, learning, employment, cultural exchange, social development and leadership development. The idea is that music transcends many differences and cultivates innovation.
South Africa contends with factors of racial, cultural, religious, class, gender and age differences. These factors, if not addressed in an intentional manner, can have an impact on the unity of members of society and their ability to work together towards the wellbeing of all its members; as well as the development of a common identity.
MIAGI aims to address this through three main methods namely, the MIAGI Orchestra, the MIAGI Music and Community Centres and using the MIAGI international profile to attract investment for development work in South Africa.
The MIAGI Orchestra is made up of group of young South African men and women of all races. This is a classically trained orchestra that have created a unique sound by infusing elements of African Jazz into their compositions. The orchestra, in its makeup, symbolises South Africa’s diversity and through its unique sound demonstrates the country’s distinct Nation Brand to the world.
The MIAGI Music and Community Centres aim to provide arts and culture education for children in informal communities. MIAGI has built, developed and managed a music centre on the premises of the Morris Isaacson High School in Soweto. The success of this Centre has inspired the development of an Arts Complex in Khayelitsha aimed at young children.
Through the high level visibility of the Orchestra’s international events and the success of Music and Community Centres, MIAGI has attracted investment from the international donor community. The investment has gone a long way in propelling MIAGI’s success.