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Wednesday 09 December 2020

To Mark Human Rights Day Max Richter Is Set To Broadcast His Universal Declaration Of Human Rights Project Across The World

To mark Human Rights Day this Thursday, 10th December, composer Max Richter's groundbreaking recording project Voices, inspired by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, will be broadcast for the first time on BBC Radio 3 and thirty-five international radio stations in Europe, the US, Australia and beyond.

Max Richter and his creative partner Yulia Mahr will also participate in a global Q&A with the United Nations to mark the day. 

At the heart of Voices is a profound sense of global community, born out of Richter and Mahr's career-long stance that creativity can play an activist role in our world. 

The album provides a place to think about the questions facing us through the prism of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. 

In a time of dramatic global change, Voices offers a musical message of hope.

Richter and Mahr invited people around the world to be part of the piece, crowd-sourcing readings of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to be interwoven into the work, which features an 'upside-down' orchestra. 

They received hundreds of submissions in over 70 languages. 

These readings form the aural landscape that the music flows through: they are the Voices of the title.

Max Richter and Yulia Mahr say: 

"In these strange and challenging times it is more important than ever to keep the music playing and the message of the Universal Declaration alive. 

"Thinking back now to the premiere of Voices in February feels like visiting another world. 

"In these strange and anxious times it is a great privilege to be able to mark Human Rights day by presenting the work again, in spite of the pandemic."


The powerful themes of humanitarianism running through Voices were informed by Yulia"s own upbringing: 

"I was born in Hungary at a time when it was a Communist country. 

"I have such vivid memories of our street, where the buildings were still peppered with bullet holes from the revolution in 56, and where some were still in ruins from World War Two.

 "In those days each person was allocated a certain predetermined amount of living space, so every flat would contain multiple generations or sometimes even different families. 

"I lived with my great grandfather, my grandmother, aunts, father and mother in three rooms.

"My grandmother had fled persecution by the Nazis to the safety of Chile for 20 years – and so in the confines of our flat I was raised on stories of escape, persecution, community and hope. 

"My grandmother remained a humanitarian throughout her life – helping refugees and being part of an international movement towards peace.

"In the end my own convoluted story saw my mother and I replicating the large scale migrations of the 20th century and I arrived in the UK aged eight – lonely, confused and desperate for security. 

"While I could rarely see my grandmother after that - her spirit has never left me and it is this spirit that informed the conception and writing of 'Voices'."

For more information CLICK HERE.

by: Mike Cobley




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