BUCHAREST, Romania, April 18, 2016 /PRNewswire/ --
World-renowned conductor Ion Marin has inaugurated the new Cantus Mundi Center at the Royal Palace Cultural Complex in Bucharest, with Romanian government backing for the groundbreaking social integration project.
Cantus Mundi, founded by Maestro Marin in 2011, is a non-profit cultural and social inclusion project that uses choral music to bring together children from Romania's disparate ethnic groups.
The idea of the project is to unite through music Romanian children from all ethnic groups, handicapped children including those suffering from Down's Syndrome, and children from all socioeconomic groups.
With a small but important subsidy from the government, and with the cooperation of the Culture, Education and Development Ministries, the project aims to reach 250,000 children in the coming three years. It has already seen the participation of 4,500 children from all parts of the country.
Developed through the Madrigal-Marin Constantin National Choir, it was designated a National Program in Romania in 2014 by government decree. Totally free, it brings together children from all social backgrounds, rich and poor, orphans, blind, autistic, motion handicapped and Down Syndrome children. It includes a wide variety of ethnic minorities, as well as the children of immigrants and of the Romanian diaspora.
The inauguration ceremony in Bucharest was attended by representatives from the Office of the Romanian President, Klaus Johannis, and by several Ministers from the government of Prime Minister Dacian Ciolos. An independent technocrat who had previously served as an EU Commissioner in Brussels, Ciolos assumed a transition government following Romania's political crisis in November 2015.
Maestro Marin, who is a Principal Guest Conductor with the Hamburg Symphony, defected from Romania 30 years ago to escape the Ceausescu regime and established himself as a conductor, at first in Vienna.
"I am extremely happy, thirty years after I defected, to be able to offer my native country and its future society an education system that will help integration and build self-esteem and hope for so many children. I am convinced that the non-verbal language of music is the right tool to bypass discrimination," he said.
Cantus Mundi aims to broaden its reach as a social integration program across Europe, with projects planned in Germany, Italy, Spain and Belgium. It has a weekly television hour on Romanian TV and the official website is http://www.cantusmundi.com
SOURCE Cantus Mundi