Symposium Transkulturalität_mdw: Music & Racism

5 and 6 May 2023
from the Fanny Hensel-Hall

Music and dance come in various forms and styles, local traditions and transcultural practices with various social meanings and functions. Against the backdrop of histories of coloniality, migration and violent othering, music and dance are tied to processes of racialization and forms of racism. The way music and dance are attached to cultural and social value clearly mirrors racial divides and larger geopolitical hegemonies. While music and dance may imply racist views and understandings, they also serve as an important mode of challenging mentioned power imbalances, as a medium for anti-racist strategies. At the same time, they can open new ways of collectively relating to each other.

The symposium Transkulturalität_mdw gathered international artists and researchers to share their approached to the topic Music and Racism: from Roma Music and Antiziganism to Creolization in New Orleans; from Critique on Coloniality and Eurocentrism to Racism in Western Classical Art Music. The symposium also featured a film screening of Aşk, Mark ve Ölüm (Love, D-Mark and Death, Cem Kaya 2022) and a performance and party curated by Salam Oida.


Friday, 5 May 2023

3.00–3.30 pm Opening

Welcome Address: Gerda Müller, Vice Rector for Organisational Development, Gender & Diversity, mdw – University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna

Introductory Remarks: Marko Kölbl, Director of the Department of Folk Music Research and Ethnomusicology, mdw – University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna

3.30–4.45 pm
Chair: Marko Kölbl

Paper Presentation: Sinthujan Varatharajah, Independent Scholar, Berlin
Music and Colonial Modernity

5.15–6.55 pm
Film Screening: ► Aşk, Mark ve Ölüm – Liebe, D-Mark und Tod by Cem Kaya

7.00–7.30 pm
Talk with the Director.
Hande Sağlam talks with Cem Kaya.

Saturday, 6 May 2023

10.30 am–11.45 am
Chair: Ursula Hemetek

Paper Presentation: Carol Silverman, University of Oregon
Intersectionality and Balkan Romani Activism: Musicians Respond to Xenophobia

12.00–1.45 pm
Chair: Evelyn Annuß

Paper Presentation: Kim Vaz-Deville, Xavier University of Louisiana
“Coming Out the Door”: Baby Dolls and Triumphal Entry on Mardi Gras Day

Paper Presentation: Rebecca Snedeker, Tulane University
The L’Union Creole Spring Concert Series: Love and Life on the Cornerstore Dancefloor

1.45–3.00 pm
Lunch Break

3.00–4.15 pm
Chair: Lisa Gaupp

Paper Presentation: Diljeet Kaur Bhachu, Musicians’ Union, UK
I Thought It Was Normal to Be the Only One: On Becoming Aware of Racism

4.30–6.00 pm
Chair: Marko Kölbl
Panel Discussion: Shanti Suki Osman, Seba Kayan, Diljeet Kaur Bhachu, Asma Aiad
Diversity WTF – Forms of Exclusion in Music and Art Universities

7.00–8.30 pm
Artistic Performance by Seba Kayan and EsRAP curated by Salam Oida

Further information

Further information on the website of the Department of Folk Music Research and Ethnomusicology.