News / Halifax

Sounding board: Halifax group using music to highlight violence against women

Women Safe & Sound project seeking black and indigenous women for Nov. 25 music video workshop.

Tamar Dina with the Music Liberatory poses for a photo in front of the Mi’kmaw Native Friendship Centre where the Women Safe & Sound event is happening next week.

Zane Woodford/Metro

Tamar Dina with the Music Liberatory poses for a photo in front of the Mi’kmaw Native Friendship Centre where the Women Safe & Sound event is happening next week.

Tamar Dina is excited about the latest phase of a Halifax-based music video project addressing the issue of violence against women.

The Women Safe & Sound project is looking for women, in particular black and aboriginal women, to attend a Nov. 25 workshop that will involve writing a chorus and developing ideas for a music video.

Over the summer, the Music Liberatory hosted a series of weekly workshops with a core group of 15 women. They developed original song lyrics (five verses) that tell the story of a woman escaping from domestic abuse with the help of other women.

“We’re presenting the lyrics to the guests and running an interactive workshop so that women can design the visual storytelling that will be in the music video with particular emphasis on the symbolism and the representation of women of colour, Indigenous women and African women,” explained Dina, coordinator of the Women Safe & Sound project.

“Women of colour have a very particular and unique understanding of the world that we live in because of what they have to face in terms of race oppression and gender oppression, but in particular how those things work together. And they have the leadership that we need.”

The Nov. 25 event at the Mi’kmaw Native Friendship Centre has been designed to encourage as much participation as possible. Food, childcare and transportation will all be provided and women are encouraged to sign up ahead of time.

“We’ve organized it to be a single evening in consideration of women’s lives. Women have a lot of responsibility and a lot of burdens and many women that I talk to want to be involved in our projects but they just can’t afford the time,” she explained.

The music video will be professionally done, and women who participate are welcome to sing but not required to.

Dina said because of the project’s collaborative nature, they’re not yet sure how it’ll look. The goal is to release the video on March 8, International Women’s Day.

“It’s not a storytelling (workshop). But if a woman remembers something from her experience she can insert it through an idea without having to say ‘I went through that,’” Dina said.

“Music is so powerful and is available to almost all of us without any money. It’s one of the most underused and potent political tools that we have.”

To register for next week’s Women Safe & Sound workshop visit www.musicliberatory.com.

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