Three institutions of higher learning have entered into a first-ever strategic partnership with Istana Budaya through the Traditional Malaysian Orchestra (OTM): Sounds of Malaysia (SOM) outreach programme.

The three IPTs are Management and Science University (MSU), Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris (UPSI) and Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia (USIM).

Istana Budaya director-general Zubaidah Mukhtar said the programme aimed to show the uniqueness of OTM to university students while introducing traditional music to the younger generation.

“OTM was established in 2010 to create a multi-racial Malaysian musical identity to jointly promote local culture through a combination of various types of music from different races and ethnicities.

“…involvement with the universities is an initiative that should be encouraged to convey the knowledge, skills and experience of OTM members by holding traditional music workshops for students,” she said at the programme’s press conference here today.

According to Zubaidah, the programme is an edutainment initiative as it also focuses on the study of music, thus helping to enhance music education at the universities.

The activities planned under the outreach programme include MSU Ethnic Music Festival 2023 (METFEST), part of the International Music, Arts and Culture Convention (IMACC) that will be held on May 23-24, a series of workshops and art forums related to multicultural music in Malaysia to be hosted by UPSI on June 24 as well as USIM’s ‘Alhan Madaniyah’ concert on Nov 11.

As a centre of excellence for the performing arts, she said Istana Budaya welcomed cooperation from all government departments and agencies in efforts to empower the arts.

“Not only does it dignify art and culture, but I hope that this programme can become a continuous collaboration in addition to providing musical expertise for strategic partners. Students can also take advantage of this experience to work on their knowledge of traditional Malaysian music,” she added.

Meanwhile, OTM conductor and music director Yazid Zakaria said a series of workshops would be held under a mentor-mentee initiative to culminate in a joint performance between the students and musicians.

“The aim is to bring this traditional music to universities as an effort to continue the legacy while also finding new talents among the younger generation,” he said.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency