Decisión de la Mesa: 15.COM 2.BUR 3.6

The Bureau,

  1. Recalling Article 23 of the Convention as well as Chapter I.4 of the Operational Directives relating to the eligibility and criteria of International Assistance requests,
  2. Having examined document LHE/20/15.COM 2.BUR/3 as well as International Assistance request no. 01634 submitted by Uruguay,
  3. Takes note that Uruguay has requested International Assistance for the project entitled The Bandoneon: sound of Tango:

To be implemented by the Cienarte Foundation in cooperation with the Interministerial Commission for the Support of Tango and Candombe, this thirty-month project is aimed at safeguarding the traditional sound of tango produced by the bandoneon, its emblematic instrument. The bandoneon is an essential part of tango (a binational nomination between Argentina and Uruguay, inscribed on the Representative List of the 2003 Convention in 2009) and is now considered as one of the fundamental signs of Rio de la Plata identity. Nowadays, however, there are only a handful of bandoneonists, mostly over sixty years of age, and there are only three luthiers dedicated to tuning and maintaining the bandoneon in Uruguay. To address this situation, this project has the following objectives: to create an inventory of bandoneons, players and luthiers; to establish a decentralized bandoneon school offering free classes for young people in four regions in the country; to develop an updated bandoneon teaching method; to generate lutherie opportunities for young people; to increase awareness of the instrument in elementary schools; and to carry out an evaluation of the bandoneon and players. A Bandoneon Fest will also be established. As a result, the people of Uruguay will become more aware of the relevance of this instrument as living heritage. Knowledge about the bandoneon will be transmitted to new generations of musicians and the training of luthiers capable of restoring, tuning and manufacturing new instruments will help address the lack of bandoneons. Finally, the value of the bandoneonists as bearers and performers of this key tradition of living heritage will be socially recognized.

  1. Further takes note that this assistance is to support a project implemented at the national level, in accordance with Article 20 (c) of the Convention, and that it takes the form of the provision of a grant, pursuant to Article 21 (g) of the Convention;
  2. Also takes note that Uruguay has requested assistance in the amount of US$99,764 from the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund for the implementation of this project;
  3. Decides that, from the information provided in file no. 01634, the request responds as follows to the criteria for granting International Assistance given in paragraphs 10 and 12 of the Operational Directives:
Criterion A.1: In the preparation of the project, the concerns and aspirations of the communities and stakeholders concerned when it comes to safeguarding the viability of the bandoneon have been taken into account. Institutions from the public and private sectors, local governments, labour unions, musicians and authors, civil associations and institutions representing civil society related to the bandoneon, as well as tango communities, have been involved. In addition, the project adopts an open-ended approach as a special section of the website of the Cienarte Foundation will be dedicated to it, meaning that anyone concerned about the bandoneon and tango could contribute. Furthermore, a gender balance will be ensured by making sure that women make up at least 50 per cent of the project participants as well as by highlighting the role of women in the history of tango. Finally, tango dancers, independent performers and tango communities have endorsed the request.

Criterion A.2: The budget is presented in a clear, comprehensive and detailed manner. The overall amount requested by the State Party adequately covers each of the proposed activities and can therefore be considered as appropriate. However, a better correlation between the description and the budget could have been provided for certain activities, such as the ‘Decentralized School of Bandoneon’ and the ‘Promotion of bandoneon in schools and development of teaching method’.

Criterion A.3: The proposed activities are coherent and well-planned in terms of the objectives and expected results of the project. One strength of the project is that its design involves players and luthiers while bringing together different generations. Furthermore, the balanced gender approach makes the project even more worthwhile. Overall, the sequence of the proposed activities is logical and seems feasible with respect to the project duration.

Criterion A.4: The project foresees awareness-raising activities on the safeguarding of living heritage that may continue beyond its duration. These include creating updated teaching methods open to the public (copyright-free). At the same time, the project intends to develop lutherie opportunities for new generations and to incorporate the bandoneon into the regime of protected cultural properties of the nation, as a sustained measure to safeguard the element. Furthermore, the plan to encourage cooperation between the cultural sector and the educational and labour sectors is promising for the sustainability of this project.

Criterion A.5: The requesting State will share 27 per cent and other partners 18 per cent of the overall budget of the project for which International Assistance is requested. The Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund will therefore cover 56 per cent of the overall budget.

Criterion A.6: The project places a strong emphasis on building the capacities of the communities to strengthen the viability of the bandoneon and tango in Uruguay and to transmit the knowledge and practice to future generations. The creation of updated copyright-free teaching mechanisms will enhance the opportunities to replicate this capacity-building methodology.

Criterion A.7: Uruguay had received International Assistance in the amount of US$186,875 from the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund for the project ‘Documentation, promotion and dissemination of the Candombe traditional drum calls, expressions of identity of the Sur, Palermo, and Cordón neighbourhoods in the city of Montevideo’, which was concluded in August 2015.

Paragraph 10(a): The project involves national institutions such as the Ministries of Education and Culture, Foreign Affairs and Tourism, the Commission for National Cultural Heritage and local governments. It also includes labour unions of musicians and authors such as the General Association of Musicians of Uruguay and the Uruguayan Association of Performers, as well as civil associations such as the Uruguayan Federation of Tango, Jovetango, Avalancha Tanguera.

Paragraph 10(b): The multiplier effect of the project – both in terms of geographical reach within the country and across the generations – is expected to be ensured by its strong focus on transmission through teaching. It is also hoped that the increased visibility resulting from the project will make it easier to further promote the practice related to the bandoneon and the safeguarding of tango.

  1. Approves the International Assistance request from Uruguay for the project entitled The Bandoneon: sound of Tango and grants the amount of US$99,764 for the implementation of this project to the State Party for this purpose;
  2. Requests that the Secretariat reach an agreement with the requesting State Party on the technical details of the assistance, paying particular attention to ensuring that the work plan and the budget of the activities to be covered by the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund are detailed and specific enough to provide a sufficient justification of all the expenditures;
  3. Invites the State Party to use Form ICH-04-Report when reporting on the use of the International Assistance provided.