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The Lebanon Project: Look Beyond – Make a Difference

Since 2005, the Norwegian Academy of Music has been involved in the development of a dedicated partner in the development of a project for musical and cultural bridge building in Lebanon, with Lebanese communities and Palestinian refugees.


he Norwegian Academy of Music's role in the Lebanon Project involves creating music activities in Palestinian refugee camps, aiding the establishment of Music as a curriculum subject at several Lebanese schools, and offering music therapy for children with special needs.

Providing educational resources and methods to local music teachers in Lebanon is also an important part of the project, and researchers and graduate students from the Academy contribute to educational development through several research and development projects. For many of the Academy's students, the Lebanon Project has become an important arena for fieldwork and teaching practice.

The Lebanon Project is a collaborative project run by the Norwegian Aid Committee (NORWAC), the FORUM for Culture and International Cooperation, and the Norwegian Academy of Music, with Jessheim Upper Secondary School and Algarheim Primary School. These Norwegian partners facilitate and contribute to a larger network for international solidarity work, aid, health care, cultural exchange, and education.

In Lebanon, the project operates in connection with the Palestinian organisation Beit Atfal Assumoud, which runs culture and health centres in the 12 Palestinian refugee camps. Other local contributors include the Imam Sadr Foundation, a health and education organisation based in Tyr, the Maarouf Saad Social and Cultural Foundation in Saida, and Shohour Public High School. NMH also collaborates with the Lebanese National Higher Conservatory of Music.


In the anthology Look Beyond – Make a Difference (2020), an English and revised version of Løft blikket - gjør en forskjell (2013), diverse descriptions of working in this Muslim community offer an engaging account of the project's development since 2002. The anthology enhances themes within a range of cultural encounters, exchange, music performance, and music as a method in health work.

The book also explores the Lebanon Project from a research and development perspective, as well as the Academy's Student Practice Programme in Lebanon, and the development of music education materials for children and youth, and training of Lebanese and Palestinian music teachers.

The Academy's involvement and motivation for contributing to foreign aid projects are discussed, with particular emphasis placed on the effects of local music teacher training and advancement of the Music Therapy research field in Norway.

The book shows how the project has attempted to "look beyond and make a difference" for children, youth, students, teachers, researchers, parents and others concerned with children's right to cultural experiences.

The editors, Vegar R. Storsve and Brit Ågot Brøske are both Senior Lectures of Didactics at the Norwegian Academy of Music. Contributing authors are Even Ruud, Kim Boeskov, Signe Kalsnes, Geir Johansen and Ingrid Maria Hanken.

To order a copy of the book, please contact the Academy.

Published: Mar 24, 2014 — Last updated: Apr 9, 2024