PeaceJam: music breaking down barriers

Music, with its power to inspire emotion, conjure memories and create bonds, has played a significant role in the history of our community.   Sometimes this has been a part of the problem, when musical traditions have emphasised exclusion and conflict.  Often, however, the experience of sharing music, of singing, playing, listening and dancing, has brought people from different traditions together and inspired them to work for peace and a shared future.  One outstanding example of this reconciliation in action was the Miami Showband whose members, themselves from different traditions, brought together Catholic and Protestant young people throughout the worst times of the Troubles.  As we know, the young musicians paid a terrible and tragic price for their courage and vision.
Here in County Fermanagh, we have a rich and vibrant cross-community musical life, with dedicated musicians sharing their talent in many genres.  In celebration of this success, and of the commitment of our young people to a shared and non-violent future, the Fermanagh Churches Forum is hosting PeaceJam, a unique evening of inspiration and hope.  The event will take place on Saturday February 25th, at 8pm at the Westville Hotel, Enniskillen.
We are delighted to welcome as our guest speaker Stephen Travers of the Miami Showband, who will talk about his own experiences of the ways in which music can break down barriers, dismantle prejudice and bring people together.  Following Stephen’s talk, a buffet supper will be served, after which young Fermanagh musicians and rock bands will play until the early hours.  (The not-quite-so-young needn’t stay quite so long!)
Tickets for the event are £5, including supper, and are available now – email me at info@fermanaghchurchesforum.org – or on the door.  We look forward to seeing you for what promises to be a great night!