Musician with global ambitions
Sayyed Elham Fanoos, a student of 12th class at the ANIM, said he had visited United States, Poland, Germany, Switzerland and Italy to attend music competition. He won third position among 30 contestants in playing Piano.
Fanoos is the son of Ahmad Fanoos who is regarded a widely known musician of the country. He is a dedicated student and first position holder.
Dr. Ahmad Nasir Sarmast, ANIM’s founder, said music could be used as a toll for promoting inter-faith harmony and unity among various ethnic groups. ANIM has 175 students, with 55 of them are girls, he added.
Sarmast said he was himself student of music back in 1991 and he had three female classmates. Now 50 girls are being imparted music education in his institute.
Laila, a student of seventh class from eastern Nuristan province, said her family members initially opposed her entry to the ANMI, but with the passage of time they realized that music was not a bad profession and now they had no objection.
She said foreigners were inspired by musical talent in Afghanistan, adding that she visited different countries and performed there.
Laila said: “People didn’t believe we are an Afghan or Afghan girls can play music or sing songs. But we proved this practically in front of hundreds of fans.”
Dr. Sarmast said efforts were on to enroll talented students in the institute and award them with internationally recognized certificates after graduation.
Sarmast said they were trying to teach 50 percent east and 50 west music to students.
Students of the institute study general theory of the music. The students who play western musical instruments should learn eastern musical studies at 13th and 14th grad as well.
According to Sarmast, Afghanistan music institute has changed into a massive cultural institution and obtained music membership globally.
Teachers and students of the institute secured many awards during their travels to Uzbekistan, Germany, Poland, Denmark, Tanzania, Argentine, Britain, US, Oman and Finland, according to the institute founder.
During a festival in Uzbekistan in 2011, Afghan students and teachers secured special award from their fans. In 2009, the national institute received annual award from world council of the music.
At the same time, orchestra of the institute provided programs eight time for the president.
He added though the national institute functioned under the structure of ministry of education, but foreign aid only focused on the institute and its authorities remained untransformed.
World Bank (WB), US Embassy, Britain, Italy Cultural Centre, Goethe-Institute, German Embassy, Canada, Finland, India and Denmark were among main donors for the national music institute since 2008.
“Music in Afghan community was weak but it got promoted after people understood the music can play a positive role in children’s life,” he said.
Another institute to train over 200 men and women was also planned to be constructed.
Work on an institute equipped with modern facilities was underway where Afghan and foreign trainers would teach the profession.
The institute has the facility of online system where students would watch live video conferences from different parts of the word and they would learn more and share their own experiences and Afghan music style with the world.
During 1991 Afghan wars, the Afghanistan Music School was completely destroyed as well as all the equipments wiped out.
Taliban in their regime had imposed strict ban on music and the hardliners destroyed all music centers.
After the Taliban regime, Afghan musicians in Afghanistan and outside the country together worked tirelessly for promoting Afghan music during the new government.
A music expert at Afghanistan national institute said “This building was a ruin in the Taliban regime but now this institute is rich in everything, thanks God,”
Abdul Mohammad added that students in the institute can use music instruments there by taking a special card and can handover all the instruments to the institute.
In this institute, there are more than a hundred of different music instruments. Afghanistan national institute is equipped with soundproof system, a library and a hall having the capacity of 300 individuals.
According to the history of Afghanistan national institute, the first music school in Afghanistan was inaugurated in 1974. The school was running by Austrian trainers.
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