The songs of Cornellà and Sant Joan Despí go unnoticed

first_imgAfter the earthquake that led to the suspension of the Vallecas party for calling Zozulya Nazi, nothing. Everything remains the same in Spanish football that last Saturday lived two denigrating scenes in the stands of the great citizen rivals of Barcelona in the derbies of LaLiga Santander in Cornellà and in the match of Third Division subsidiaries in the Estadi Johan Cruyff of Sant Joan Then without anyone intervening.In the Cornellà-El Prat match where Espanyol and Barça faced each other, Carlos del Cerro Grande’s referee refused to heed Piqué’s claim during the match that asked him to record the racist and homophobic cries in the minutes I dedicated a part of the Spanish stand with the song “Piqué bastard, Shakira has a tail, your son is from Wakaso and you are a fag.” Hours before, in the derby of the subsidiaries that was played at the Estadi Johan Cruyff in Sant Joan Despí between Barça B and Espanyol B a dozen ultras of the Barcelona team that are prohibited from accessing the Camp Nou, but not at the stadium where the subsidiary plays, made fun of the deceased Espanyol player Dani Jarque singing “If Dani Jarque scores it will be a ghost goal”. Further, they released Nazi slogans Y They wished the death of Commissioner Lluís Venteo, the security coordinator between the Mossos d’Esquadra and the club.last_img read more

Pouderoyen, Police strike on second night of Limacol league

first_imgThe Limacol Knockout footfall tournament continued on Monday evening with two more exciting encounters at the Ministry of Education ground.In the first of the two matchups, Pouderoyen and Beacon FC were slated to compete, with both teams now playing their first match of the tournament, the encounter was sure to be exciting as both would want to get their points ticking.After what seemed like a tense first half, Pouderoyen shockingly took the lead with a goal from Esan Nelson a few minutes before the whistle was blown, signaling the end of the first half. Acting on the momentum they got from their goal in the first half, Quessey Alleyne netted another one for the ecstatic Pouderoyen team in the 48th minute.Knowing they had to make a comeback or suffer a defeat, Beacon began to play harder but it was to no avail. Trying their best to bounce back, Kimba Brathwaite netted the team’s first and only goal, but it was indeed a little too late for them. Pouderoyen won 2-1.Minutes later, Police and Northern Rangers took to the field for the second matchup of the evening. With Nothern Rangers settling for a draw and Police completely missing out in their respective first matches, both sides hungry for a win. The experience in both teams was clearly displayed as they pulled out all the stops to restrict the opponents. As such, the defense was on an all-time high for both teams as they came up with one near miss after the other. After a goalless first half and quiet for much of the second half, Rawle Haynes of the Police team finally got a rewarding breakthrough in the 70th minute allowing his team to take the lead and eventually the game.The Limacol knockout tournament which is organized by the Petra Organization continues on Friday September 7, with Campton FC facing off with Georgetown Football Club (GFC) at 18:00h and then at 20:00h Santos FC will clash with Grove Hi Tec. Both matches will be played at the Ministry of Education ground on Carifesta Avenue Georgetown.last_img read more

WATCH: Cuba defender Karel Espinosa hits 40-yard free-kick out of the stadium

first_imgFans are usually in safe territory when it comes to free-kicks.Players can be forgiven for losing their cool from the penalty spot and blasting the ball into crowd behind the goal.But Cuba defender Karel Espinosa somehow managed to not only hit his 40-yard free-kick high and wide – he sent the ball out of the stadium.Espinosa didn’t look too embarrassed, but his side eventually went on to lose 6-2 to their CONCACAF Under-17 Championship clash against the USA.Watch the video below….. Espinosa didn’t look too embarrassed 1last_img


first_imgMalachi Eastwood, Managing Director, Gartan Technologies, pictured with the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton TD on a recent trade mission to Australia organised by Enterprise Ireland. The Donegal based software company is expanding its operations to Australia and opened an office in Sydney on Monday, November 3rd.Gartan Technologies, based in Letterkenny, is now a global entity due to the expansion of its business to Australia. The company develops specialised software which monitors the availability of personnel and manages their time.Gartan already has a strong customer base in the UK and Ireland and has been awarded a major contract by Fire and Rescue New South Wales (FRNSW), one of the largest Fire & Rescue operations in the world. Speaking about Gartan Technologies’ entry into the Australian market, Managing Director, Malachi Eastwood, said they are delighted to be working with FRNSW because it represents a significant step forward.“There are great opportunities in Australia but to make the most of them you need to have a presence on the ground. In fact, our decision to do so was key to securing our new relationship with FRNSW.”New South Wales is a region larger than France and in 2012/13 FRNSW responded to over 134,000 incidents. FRNSW was looking for a system that would help ensure they had sufficient personnel available to respond to emergency callouts from 338 stations.Because of the scale of the New South Wales operation, they wanted a proven solution that matched their specific requirements. Upon undertaking a rigorous evaluation of the global market, they chose Gartan because of their track record and reputation in Ireland and the UK. Malachi explains, “We work with organisations in many sectors including Health, Finance, Manufacturing and Emergency Services, that put an emphasis on ensuring their employees’ time is always properly utilised and valued. Our products do more than simply manage staff availability, they are strategic tools which enhance performance and efficiency.”“Organisations want reliable, flexible partners that consistently deliver to help them manage their employee time. It’s a proposition that we took to Australia which has been very well received. We’re especially proud to have clients in Ireland and UK who have been with us for 14, 16 and even 18 years. That’s a track record we intend to keep in Australia.” DONEGAL SOFTWARE COMPANY ANNOUNCES EXPANSION INTO AUSTRALIA was last modified: November 5th, 2014 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more


first_imgTHURSDAY: The Valley Interfaith Council needs volunteers to deliver holiday meals to senior citizens this morning. In the Northeast Valley, call (818) 834-6100; (818) 766-5165 in the North Hollywood area; (818) 781-1101 in the Van Nuys area; and (818) 374-5350 between 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. for the West Valley. The Interfaith Assistance Program is heading a new toy drive for San Fernando Valley families. Toys can be dropped off at the VIC office, 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday at 10824 Topanga Canyon Blvd., Chatsworth. Call (818) 718-6460, Ext. 3012. The Midnight Mission will hold its annual Thanksgiving Day meal, 9 a.m.-1:30 p.m. at 396 S. Los Angeles St. The Fred Jordan Mission will hold a Thanksgiving Day banquet, 10 a.m., 445 Towne Ave., Los Angeles. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREBlues bury Kings early with four first-period goals The Rotary Club of Calabasas/Agoura Hills will host its 17th annual Thanksgiving Day dinner for senior citizens, noon-2 p.m., at the Sagebrush Cantina, 23527 Calabasas Road, Calabasas. The Hollywood Recreation Center will host a Thanksgiving Day dinner noon-6:30 p.m. at 1122 Cole Ave. in Hollywood. The Southland’s largest outdoor ice skating rink will be open to the public 2 p.m.-9 p.m. at Pershing Square Park, 532 S. Olive St., Los Angeles. The eighth annual L.A. Kings Downtown On Ice event runs through Jan. 16. Park hours are Monday-Thursday, noon to 9 p.m.; Friday-Sunday, 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Skating is $6 per one-hour session and skate rental is $2. The Department of Water and Power will sponsor the 10th annual Holiday and Light Festival at Griffith Park 5 p.m.-10 p.m., along Crystal Springs Drive. Ends Dec. 30. Free shuttle service will be available from the Los Angeles Zoo, Nov. 25-27, Dec. 2-4, Dec. 9-11, and then nightly Dec.16-30. Mail Datebook entries – including time, date, location and a phone number – to Daily News City Desk, P.O. Box 4200, Woodland Hills, CA 91365; fax (818) 713-0058; e-mail read more

188 Foyle Donegal staff earn QQI Certificates from Donegal ETB – Picture Special

first_imgOne hundred and eighty-eight staff members at Foyle Donegal have earned Level 3 QQI certificates in recognition of prior learning (RPL) in the workplace. Donegal ETB’s Further Education and Training (FET) Service presented the large group with their accreditation at an event on Monday last. Donegal ETB’s FET Service met Foyle Donegal last year to discuss the provision of courses for their employees across a range of levels and subject areas. However, as many had already gained a range of skills and knowledge through in-house training and experiential learning, the focus switched to accrediting these skills and evidence was gathered and strategies devised to link that learning to standards on the National Qualifications Framework (NQF).Donegal ETB and Foyle Food Group Officials pictured at presentations. Seated L-R: Andrina Wafer (QQI), Martina Needham (ETB), Malachy McAteer (FFG), Barbara King (FFG), Crona Gallagher (ETB), Patricia Walsh (ETB). Back L-R:(All FFG) Joanna Slomkowska, Martin McDermott, John Cunningham, Lesley Otterson and Patrica Grant.Presenting the awards, Malachy McAteer, Operations Director of Foyle Food Group said, ‘I wish to congratulate all Foyle Donegal employees and commend the collaboration between Donegal ETB and Foyle Donegal. The achievement of the employees is testament to the commitment of Foyle Donegal, especially our HR Manager Barbara King, to employee development.”Donegal ETB’s Director of FET, Cróna Gallagher stated, “Donegal ETB’s FET Service acknowledges that learning takes places in a range of environments such as the classroom, the workplace and the community and that skills, knowledge and competencies are achieved through formal, non-formal and informal experiences and learning.“Acknowledging this has led to the recognition that many learners have skills, knowledge and competencies that have not been formally validated against the standards outlined on the National Framework of Qualifications. I am pleased to see that the introduction of Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) has enabled Donegal ETB’s FET Service to support employers in the county to upskill their employees.” Qualifications and Quality Ireland (QQI)’s representative Andrina Wafer attended the presentation and spoke about the success of the collaboration between Foyle Food Group and Donegal ETB.  She said that Donegal ETB has led the way in Recognition and Accreditation of Prior Learning in both Ireland and within the European Union.Donegal ETB has started to expand this initiative to other work environments. Employers who are interested in discussing this should contact Martina Needham at group photos from the presentations below: 188 Foyle Donegal staff earn QQI Certificates from Donegal ETB – Picture Special was last modified: May 14th, 2019 by Rachel McLaughlinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Donegal ETBfoyle donegalNational Qualifications Frameworkprior learning (RPL) in the workplacelast_img read more

Raiders’ Marshawn Lynch living life, breaking tackles on his own terms

first_imgFor complete Oakland Raiders coverage follow us on Flipboard.ALAMEDA — The locker room was clearing out, and Raiders coach Jon Gruden, holding a game ball tossed to him by defensive coordinator Paul Guenther, was making his way out of when he saw a solitary figure sitting in a chair in front of his locker.Gruden walked up to Marshawn Lynch, extended his hand, and the two exchanged a few words after the Raiders’ 45-42 win over the Cleveland Browns Sunday.Lynch lives life in a protective …last_img

Human Genome “Infinitely More Complex” Than Expected

first_imgTen years after the Human Genome Project was completed, now we know: biology is “orders of magnitude” more complicated than scientists expected.  So wrote Erika Check Hayden in Nature News March 31 and in the April 1 issue of Nature.1    An air of daunting complexity haunts the article.  The Human Genome Project was one of the great scientific investigations of the end of the 20th century.  Some compared it to the Manhattan Project or the Apollo program.  It used to be tedious, painstaking work to read the sequence of DNA letters.  Now, deciphering genomes is a matter of course.  But with the rush of data coming from genomes of everything from yeast to Neanderthals, one thing has become clear: “as sequencing and other new technologies spew forth data, the complexity of biology has seemed to grow by orders of magnitude,” Hayden wrote.    A few things were surprisingly simple.  Geneticists expected to find 100,000 genes in the human genome; the count is more like 21,000.  But with them came a huge surprise in the accessory molecules – transcription factors, small RNAs, regulators – all arranged in dynamic interacting networks that boggle the mind.  Hayden compared them to the Mandelbrot set in fractal geometry that unveils deeper levels of complexity the closer you look. “When we started out, the idea was that signalling pathways were fairly simple and linear,” says Tony Pawson, a cell biologist at the University of Toronto in Ontario.  “Now, we appreciate that the signalling information in cells is organized through networks of information rather than simple discrete pathways.  It’s infinitely more complex.”Hayden acknowledged that the “junk DNA” paradigm has been blown to smithereens.  “Just one decade of post-genome biology has exploded that view,” she said, speaking of the notion that gene regulation was a straightforward, linear process – genes coding for regulator proteins that control transcription.  “Biology’s new glimpse at a universe of non-coding DNA – what used to be called ‘junk’ DNA – has been fascinating and befuddling.”  If it’s junk, why would the human body decode 74% to 93% of it?  The plethora of small RNAs produced by these non-coding regions, and how they interact with each other and with DNA, was completely unexpected when the project began.    These realizations are dissipating some of the early na�vet� of the Human Genome Project.  Planners predicted we would “unravel the mysteries behind everything from evolution to disease origins.”  Cures for cancer were envisioned.  We would trace the path of evolution through the genetic code.  That was so 1990s.  Joshua Plotkin, a mathematical biologist at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, said, “Just the sheer existence of these exotic regulators suggests that our understanding about the most basic things – such as how a cell turns on and off – is incredibly na�ve.”  Leonid Kruglyak, a geneticist at Princeton University in New Jersey, commented on the premature feeling that the data would speak for itself: “There is a certain amount of naivety to the idea that for any process – be it biology or weather prediction or anything else – you can simply take very large amounts of data and run a data-mining program and understand what is going on in a generic way.”    Some are still looking for simple patterns in the complexity.  Top-down approaches try to build models where the data points fall into place:A new discipline – systems biology – was supposed to help scientists make sense of the complexity.  The hope was that by cataloguing all the interactions in the p53 network, or in a cell, or between a group of cells, then plugging them into a computational model, biologists would glean insights about how biological systems behaved.    In the heady post-genome years, systems biologists started a long list of projects built on this strategy, attempting to model pieces of biology such as the yeast cell, E. coli, the liver and even the ‘virtual human’.  So far, all these attempts have run up against the same roadblock: there is no way to gather all the relevant data about each interaction included in the model.The p53 network she spoke of is a good example of unexpected complexity.  Discovered in 1979, the p53 protein was first thought to be a cancer promoter, then a cancer suppressor.  “Few proteins have been studied more than p53,” she said.  “…Yet the p53 story has turned out to be immensely more complex than it seemed at first.”  She gave some details:Researchers now know that p53 binds to thousands of sites in DNA, and some of these sites are thousands of base pairs away from any genes.  It influences cell growth, death and structure and DNA repair.  It also binds to numerous other proteins, which can modify its activity, and these protein�protein interactions can be tuned by the addition of chemical modifiers, such as phosphates and methyl groups.  Through a process known as alternative splicing, p53 can take nine different forms, each of which has its own activities and chemical modifiers.  Biologists are now realizing that p53 is also involved in processes beyond cancer, such as fertility and very early embryonic development.  In fact, it seems wilfully [sic] ignorant to try to understand p53 on its own.  Instead, biologists have shifted to studying the p53 network, as depicted in cartoons containing boxes, circles and arrows meant to symbolize its maze of interactions.Network theory is now a new paradigm that has replaced the one-way linear diagram of gene to RNA to protein.  That used to be called the “Central Dogma” of genetics.  Now, everything is seen to be dynamic, with promoters and blockers and interactomes, feedback loops, feed-forward processes, and “bafflingly complex signal-transduction pathways.”  “The p53 story is just one example of how biologists’ understanding has been reshaped, thanks to genomic-era technologies,” Hayden said.  “….That has expanded the universe of known protein interactions – and has dismantled old ideas about signalling ‘pathways’, in which proteins such as p53 would trigger a defined set of downstream consequences.”    Biologists made a common mistake of assuming that more data would bring more understanding.  Some continue to work from the bottom up, believing that there is an underlying simplicity that will come to light eventually.  “It’s people who complicate things,” remarked one Berkeley researcher.  But one scientist who predicted the yeast genome and its interactions would be solved by 2007 has had to put off his target date for a few decades.  It’s clear that our understanding remains very rudimentary.  Hayden said in conclusion, “the beautiful patterns of biology’s Mandelbrot-like intricacy show few signs of resolving.”    There’s a bright side to the unfolding complexity.  Mina Bissell, a cancer researcher at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in California, confesses she was “driven to despair by predictions that all the mysteries would be solved” by the Human Genome Project.  “Famous people would get up and say, ‘We will understand everything after this’,” Hayden quoted her saying.  But it turned out for good, in a way: “Biology is complex, and that is part of its beauty.”1.  Erika Check Hayden, “Human genome at ten: Life is complicated,” Nature 464, 664-667 (April 1, 2010) | doi:10.1038/464664a.Who predicted the complexity: the Darwinians or the intelligent design proponents?  You already know the answer.  The Darwinians have been wrong on this matter time and time again.  The origin of life would be simple (the Warm Little Pond of Darwin’s dreams).  Protoplasm would be simple.  Proteins would be simple.  Genetics would be simple (remember Darwin’s pangenes?).  The carrier of genetic information would be simple.  DNA transcription would be simple (the Central Dogma).  The origin of the genetic code would be simple (the RNA World, or Crick’s “frozen accident.”).  Comparative genomics would be simple, and we would be able to trace the evolution of life in the genes.  Life would be littered with the trash of mutations and natural selection (vestigial organs, junk DNA).  Simple, simple, simple.Simple-minded.(Visited 52 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Elephants Equipped with 4WD

first_imgAn elephant is built like a four-wheel drive vehicle, say scientists from the Royal Veterinary College in London.  Unlike other mammals, which divide acceleration and braking between the front and rear legs, “power is applied independently to each limb,” reported PhysOrg from a paper in PNAS.1“Elephant limbs operate analogously to four-wheel-drive vehicles,” the authors stated unabashedly in their paper.  “Although the four limbs share qualitatively equivalent mechanical functions (i.e., their contributions to braking and propulsion are proportionately similar, not skewed toward one or the other), elephant locomotor mechanics are dominated by the forelimbs, which do more work and contribute more power to the CoM [Center of Mass].”The benefits of independent leg control come at the cost of lower effective mechanical advantage, requiring more energy at higher speeds, the authors explained.  That’s why elephants do not run very fast for very long.  Another study published by the University of Manchester last fall, however, said counterintuitively that “Large, lumbering animals such as elephants move much more efficiently than small, agile ones such as mice” (see PhysOrg).  In fact, contrary to man-made vehicles, “bigger animals move three and a half times more efficiently than smaller ones.”  This comes from having upright posture and more spring in the step.The reduced mechanical advantage from four-leg drive needs to be seen in context.  Another study reported by Royal Veterinary team last month in PhysOrg said that an “elephant’s movements are extremely economical.”  They compared it to mice and men:2 “Consuming a minimum of 0.8J/kg/m, an elephant’s cost of transport is 1/3 that of humans and 1/30 that of mice.”They also examined whether elephant locomotion at higher speeds is best described as walking or running.  It’s both, depending on the definition.  They observed that, running or walking, elephants keep a remarkably even keel.  Watch an elephant’s shoulder next time you see one at a trot.  The scientists measured this, and found that “the elephant’s centre of mass bounces less than other animals’, reducing the giant’s cost of transport.”From the baby elephant walk to the bull run, the gait of the elephant appears well designed for its four ton bulk.  None of the papers said anything about how this independent leg control might have evolved.  The PNAS paper, however, made one astonishing admission about evolution.  The authors essentially said that a contradiction to evolutionary expectations was somehow due to evolution anyway: “Functional equivalence of all four limbs is in contradiction to our previous findings, which assumed some functional similarity between the limbs of elephants and other mammals.  This equivalence seems to be a unique specialization of elephants that relates to their unique size, range of habitats, and evolutionary history.”  That statement did not include any references to evidence of fossil transitional forms going from rear-leg to four-leg design.1.  Ren, Miller, Lair and Hutchinson, “Integration of biomechanical compliance, leverage, and power in elephant limbs,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, published online March 29, 2010, doi: 10.1073/pnas.0911396107.2.  Recall from the 11/18/2004 entry that human anatomy is remarkably well adapted for distance running.That lone reference to evolution was disgusting.  Did you catch that?  They used zero evidence to support evolution.  (Again.)  If unique traits can be attributed to “evolutionary history” as much as homologous traits can, Darwin has rigged a scam.  It’s the old heads-I-win-tails-you-lose trick.If anything, elephants have devolved.  The fossil record shows larger, more powerful members of the elephant family – the wooly mammoths, and several other robust behemoths no longer with us.  We can appreciate the design of the sport utility vehicles still around, and only wonder at the humvees and tanks of the past.  And just imagine the power of the dinosaurs, like the gigantic Titanosaurs.  The Creator knew how to move a lot of mass around with efficiency and grace; after all, he created the laws of physics, too.(Visited 13 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

The joy of music reigns in Kinshasa’s veins

first_img“If you listen carefully you can hear the African rhythms in Beethoven,” says Armand Diangienda. (Image: Vincent Boisot)• Maren BorchersFor Artists+49 30 414 78 17• Cementing peace in the DRC • Goema music goes classical • Building bridges with classical music • South African youth orchestra set to wow Europe • Limpopo Orchestra releases albumSulaiman PhilipBeethoven’s 9th Symphony – The Symphony of Joy – is the sound of happiness captured. It is an everlasting moment of bliss. The second chair violins and cellos set the background, the rich sound building hesitantly. Then the first violin breaks free, with the orchestra, building an unstoppable wave as the themes crash into each other, big and loud and unstable.Facing the orchestra, marking the tempo, a look of pure joy on his face, is the conductor, Armand Diangienda. The fourth movement begins, repeating the themes of the first three. Instruments transition to a solo baritone, the lone singer joined by the chorus. Their voices rise, bouncing off the green walls of the courtyard. And then silence, murmurs of irritation as the lights go out and the power dies, and generators are repaired by the light of mobile phones.The 9th is a remarkable and – at the time of its composition – revolutionary ode to hope, joy and brotherhood. Listening to it is inspiring and one of the most rousing musical experiences one can have in a concert hall. But this performance is not in a European concert hall; it is taking place in the courtyard of musical director, composer and conductor Diangienda in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), performed by Orchestre Symphonique Kimbanguiste (OSK). It is the only symphony orchestra in central Africa and the only all-black orchestra in the world. Even though it has been performing for two decades, it was only recently that anyone outside of Kinshasa learned of its existence.An unassuming building, its hallways and courtyard are filled with self-taught classical musicians playing patched-up or made-from-scratch instruments. Instead of the local soukous or ndombolo music, the OSK plays the music of Beethoven, Brahms, Mendelsohn and Stravinsky. “Here in our country, music is listened to so that you can dance. It is very rare that it is listened to just for meditation, but I think classical music takes you really far,” Diangienda told a German documentary crew in 2010.Sounds of the cityIn the bustling cacophony of Kinshasa, even as the sun goes down, the Orchestre Symphonique Kimbanguiste competes with the sounds of the city: the blaring hooters, the stamp of feet on the hardened mud, and the voices of pedestrians just on the other side of the wall.For the 200-strong orchestra and choir this nightly ritual of practice is an escape from the grinding poverty of their daily lives. Josephine, raising a son on her own, rises at 4.30am every day to sell omelettes in the local market. In the evening, she turns up religiously for rehearsals that go on for hours. “When I sing Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, it takes me far away. When I turn from mother to musician I feel I have left the planet. I am not in the Congo anymore,” she says.“They come because they’re passionate about music,” says Diangienda, the man who founded the OSK 20 years ago. “It gives them something more in terms of confidence, of feeling capable and of being able to contribute to a collective endeavour.”Watch Peter Gabriel perform his song “In Your Eyes” with the OSK:National heroDiangienda comes from a line of men considered heroes of the nation. As a descendant of Simon Kimbangu, the healer and religious leader who died in 1951, he is considered a living god. Imprisoned for sedition by the Belgian colonial government, Kimbangu spent 30 years in jail for founding the Kimbanguist Church, an African interpretation of the dominant Roman Catholic Church. After his death, Simon Kimbangu Kiangani, his son and Diangienda’s father, took the reins of the church and grew it into the largest in the DRC.Colonial Kinshasa was a place of dreams and fascination for Europeans. It was a violent city where European ideas of Africa became real and African dreams of a cultured west fed off each other. Kimbangu’s message and warning that one day “the black man will become white and the white man will become black” earned him a death sentence.In large parts of Africa, classical music is still considered a foreign import, a vestige of colonialism. When he founded the orchestra in 1994 it was the biggest misconception Diangienda had to fight. He argued instead that music was universal, that classical music was an expression of the culture of the DRC. And with his lineage, the former airline pilot found people willing to listen to his argument.For adherents of the church founded by his grandfather, The Church of Jesus Christ on Earth (the Kimbanguist Church), music is a form of spiritual wealth. “My grandfather claimed that to sing was to pray twice. But what inspires me even more is that my grandfather’s message was a universal one, a message of peace, of love, of reaching out for others and bringing people together.”Night-time rehearsalsWith no sheet music and no one trained to play the instruments he did not have, Diangienda recruited 12 members of his father’s church to his project. He found five violins, in need of repair, and began spreading the gospel of classical music in Kinshasa. “We rehearsed at night to accommodate people’s working hours. One person played for 20 minutes, then gave the instrument to the next person for their turn.”In the German documentary, Kinshasa Symphony, a young violinist describes the first time he picked up the instrument. Unsure of what he has in his hands, he says: “It was such joy to touch the instrument. I broke strings. I couldn’t get music out of it.” It is not a challenge from which he shies away. Like the choir which learned German for a performance of Carmina Burana, he embraces the test. In the end, he adds: “I dream of doing great things with my music.”Débrouillardise is a French word that means “making ends meet” or “surviving”; it’s a word Diangienda uses to describe the lives of his musicians –men and women who struggle and hustle daily to make ends meet. But it is a spirit that has helped to grow the orchestra. Instruments that could not be borrowed had to be reverse engineered and built by a self-taught instrument maker. Bicycle brake wire became violin strings. Scores were copied out by hand after being deciphered through hours of listening to CDs. “I couldn’t read music, but driven by my passion, and with help from my friends, I gradually learned. We are like my grandfather who thought the impossible and just did it.”The self-devised techniques to build and repair the orchestras instruments are unorthodox and effective. (Image: Vincent Boisot)Congolese and classical mash upOver 20 years Diangienda has strayed from the path of Brahms and Beethoven. For the 50th anniversary of Congo independence the orchestra mixed Beethoven’s Ode to Joy and Orff’s Carmina Burana with a selection of Congolese folk music in a performance in front of 3 000 appreciative Congolese. Arranged by Diangienda, it sounded like Gershwin with an African beat.“Everything we’re learning by playing classical music allows us to enrich our own music as well and immortalise it by writing it down,” Diangienda says. He and the orchestra’s first violinist, Heritier Malumbi, and bassoonist, Balongi, have already composed several symphonic works full of rich Congolese flavours.Last year was the biggest year for the OSK. The orchestra completed its first international tour, with performances in New York, Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom. And Diangienda received an honour once bestowed on the composers Brahms, Rossini, Stravinsky and Wagner when he became an honorary member of the Royal Philharmonic Society.He has now broken ground for a musical academy in Kinshasa. He hopes that the children who come after will help spread the DRC’s rich culture through classical music. “That is my dream, to create a musical school where kids and adults will learn how to write music and play instruments. They’ll do symphonies or sonatas which will be classical but completely African.”last_img read more