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Our third Sound in Action event, Narratives and Displacement is coming up at Studio Yalla on March 28th, and this time, we are excited to collaborate with Salwa Foundation!

Event details of Narratives and Displacement
Date 28 March 2019
Time 19:30 -00:00

Salwa Foundation is a platform that helps artists at the beginning of their career, by offering personal coaching, professional assistance with creating portfolios. They organize workshops, movie screenings, excursions, and talks, in which already established artists share the challenges they encountered and how they handled them.

Together with Salwa, we want to explore the relationship between sonic space and migration. How do sound and music provide a voice and a sonic space for those who are undergoing moments of displacement and alienation? What constitutes displacement and how does one situate oneself in it? Can music provide not only a voice, but also a space, a form of residency? How can we share a musical “home”, instead of “owning” space?

These and other questions will be a part of the intimate evening of film screening, conversations, and music.

Cacophony, a short film by Suzy Asa, explores the conglomeration of the layers of every day life through visuals and sound. Analogue photographs allow both to reveal and to discern moments in certain time frames. The recorded voice of the Syrian refugee family on a bus oscillates through this whole journey.

Suzy Asa is a watercolor artist and a student in rMA Cultural Analysis in UvA since September 2017. She has studied Media and Visual Arts with Psychology in her bachelors, in Koç University, Istanbul. She was born and grew up in Istanbul, Turkey. She had broadcasted a radio show for four years through a student run club, was an active member of queer movement in university and was highly interested in reflexive/embodied ways of dealing with knowledge. Nowadays, her academic interests are dwelling around the concept of liminality and its relation with time and space. Wandering around these zones both in her own practices of drawing and in academic field inspires her to explore the meanings of passage-like experiences and what they can fructify.

Our Guests

Yara Said is a Syrian visual artist based in the Netherlands, and an initiator of  the Salwa Foundation. She has received her education at the Faculty of Fine Arts of the University of Damascus, where she graduated in 2014. As a result of personal experience, she is aiming to connect art with social development. By immersing herself in disciplines such as politics, psychology, sociology, and theology, she endeavours to pinpoint the position of artists in society and the perception of that same society on artists. With this goal in mind, the Salwa Foundation was established. Named after Yara’s grandmother, Salwa is a name for girls in Arabic. Salwa means: “consolation”, “that which brings happiness”, “something that makes you forget your sadness and worries”. Yara is now enrolled in the Fine Art Department at the Sandberg Institute, a two-year Master of Arts program.

Dr. Barbara Titus is associate professor of cultural musicology at the University of Amsterdam, working on the intersection of internationally recognized disciplines such as ethnomusicology, popular music studies and sound studies. Having studied musicology at Utrecht University and she has gained her doctorate from Oxford University with a dissertation that was published under the title Recognizing Music as an Art Form: Friedrich Th. Vischer and German music criticism, 1848-1887. (Leuven University Press, 2016). In 2007, she shifted her attention from German metaphysics to South African street music (maskanda), with the explicit aim to question the polarity that these two fields of investigation still seem to represent. Barbara is a fellow at the African Studies Centre Leiden (ASCL) Community. She is co-editor of the journal the world of music (new series), and is a member of the advisory board for the journal Music Theory and Analysis. Her book about maskanda is currently under review with the University of Chicago Press, and she is a part of the research group Music and Culture at the Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis (ASCA).

Lucy Little works somewhere on the intersection of music, communications, and social service. A U.S.-based classically-trained violinist, multi-instrumentalist, and composer, her music falls on the edge of many styles in her solo electro-acoustic project and compositions. A collaborative musician at heart, Lucy plays with numerous ensembles, including blues and indie rock outfit Half Gringa, the chamber rock/jazz group The Phantom Broadcast, singer/composer MICHA, ambient-electronic project Lykanthea, and the Chicago Middle East Music Ensemble. Lucy also has a professional background in creative arts (music, social circus, and visual arts) integration in social service settings, having worked in family reunification shelters for unaccompanied minors hoping to resettle with family and friends in the U.S., with CircEsteem, a youth social circus, and with the Institute of Politics, a nonprofit that aims to engage young people in public service. 

Lucy moved to Amsterdam recently as a 2018-19 U.S. Fulbright-Schuman grantee to the E.U., where she is an independent researcher based at the non-profit Musicians Without Borders. Lucy's research looks at the general question of "how artists can help," looking at how musicians are trained to use music as a tool to support refugees resettling in the E.U., and generally how different communities are using the arts to promote social inclusion. Additionally, while Lucy is based at MWB, she is supporting their work with the European arts platform art27 and their Welcome Notes training program.

Kujo is an Amsterdam-based Lebanese artist, label manager & promoter. Stemming from the ambient noise of Beirut and friction in the industrial factories of Seoul, invasive hardware-based live performances have solidified the oriental and industrial nature of their sound. Through their Zenevloed platform they have pushed the envelope in the city of Amsterdam by creating sonic spaces in old military shooting ranges and abandoned morgues. With Modular Mind showcases at De School, Amsterdam / Constant Value, Seoul and Busan / Frequent Defect and Beirut, the label & artist seeks to transmit a message reflective of current times.

More TBA.

The even will be chaired by one of the Sound in Action organisers, Ieva Gudaitytė, who is currently doing her Masters in Music Studies in the University of Amsterdam. She has graduated from the University of Edinburgh in 2018 with the work „Borders of Fun: Decoding Rock Tradition in Soviet Lithuania“, and continues to explore ties between popular music and politics in Eastern European contexts.

Event Details

Narratives of Displacement will take place on the 28th of March at 20:00. Doors at 19:30.
Derde Kostverlorenkade 35-D, 1054 TS Amsterdam

This is a free event and we welcome all participants and voices. As space is limited please RSVP by emailing

Who Are We?

Sound In Action is an initiative that aims to bring to the public realm a demonstration of how music, sound and performance makes tangible change to society. Our initiative is an overt form of opposition to the education budget cuts in the Netherlands as well as similar issues in education worldwide. Cuts in education, in particular in the humanities, disrupt the freedom for knowledge transmission by superimposing a service/consumer relationship mode within an educational institution. Because the humanities do not create a product that can be fed into a capitalist environ, this type of knowledge is undervalued and thus underfunded. By drawing attention to the knowledge of the humanities in action we are showing how this type of education is discursive and does not need to be justified to exist.

Sound in Action exists in support of the work carried out by WOinActie and other student groups.

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Sound in Action thanks Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis and the Music Studies department of UvA for their generous support.