Stone Flowers, a musical band of the war survivors, that raises awareness on human rights
Music is a relief, a way of surviving and a way to express joy as well as sorrow. It will be difficult to find out even a single person who does not love music. Over the years, mankind has always been fascinated by music; some enjoy the rhythm and for some, music is the way to express their feelings. One such musical band is Stone Flowers, formed by the war and torture survivors.
For the members of the Stone Flowers, ‘Music is a way of surviving. Music is a way to be understood. Music is life’. Their music is both therapeutic and political that produces powerful, uplifting and beautiful music. The fact that makes Stone Flowers a different music band, is for its music that raises awareness of human rights abuses, while having a positive and feel-good effects on the participants and the audience.
Stone Flowers is a Manchester-based group where members write and perform their own songs. Members of the Stone Flowers have experienced torture, rape and unimaginable violence. They have lost their home, culture and family, as well as part of themselves. Music allows them to express their experiences and emotions, and convey these to their audiences. They write about torture, home, family, war, hope and resilience in the languages and rhythms of their home countries like Iran, Kuwait, Sri Lanka, Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Music allows the expression of complex emotions without having to be cognitively acknowledged – it can go straight from emotions to expression without having to be coded verbally. Lis Murphy, director of Musicians without Borders UK.
This four year old music band is supported by the charity, Musicians without Borders UK and Freedom from Torture North West. The band has been performing live at numerous events. They are working on a new album Ngunda. The name of the album is based on one of its 10 tracks, Ngunda Azali Mutu, which means ‘a refugee is a human being’ in the Bantu language Lingala.
Most important is to communicate that refugees are human beings. We are fighting for our human rights through our songs and raising awareness about torture because of the way we are viewed outside of our countries, says one group member.
Image Credit: ohtv