by Maria Kouvarou
“I want to sing”
(Y. & Mostafa)
They say that the only constant in life, is change. A change that takes all sorts of façades and unfolds in countless possible ways. Change is often present in lullabies in different forms, too. In the way caregivers sing about how the arrival of a baby has influenced their lives, in the way they express their hope for a better tomorrow for their children. Change is present even by the mere fact that the lullaby – sung before sleep – encompasses in itself a journey from today to tomorrow.
Did you miss the first post for this lullaby? Read it here.
At the same time, even in change, there are elements that remain constant. Elements that hold together the befores and the afters, threads that connect past, present and future, making them into complete wholes. And, the “constant in the change” is something that is again characteristic of lullabies.
Historically, and in not few civilizations, one of the roles of lullabies had been to pass down cultural knowledge and tradition. This is a current noticeable today, too, although it does not necessarily happen purposefully. Rather, one could say that when a mother, a father, a caregiver creates a lullaby for their baby, they do it from the heart – from the purest corners of their being, from the depths of their experience; places where tradition often resides.
‘Y’ took a journey with his three daughters, a journey that brought them from Syria to Cyprus. Cyprus is home now, and, in this home, Y. writes a lullaby for his little ones. In the lyrics he weaves, in the Arabic language, words that express his love, his pride, and his aspirations for them. In the music he paints sonic images of tradition with an Arabic rhythm that is played with percussion instruments from his country; the doumbek, the riq…
“God protect them for me
and make their dreams come true”…
…he sings, gazing to the future with his daughters. And he does it in the present, but without losing the connection with the past.
And, by experiencing the interplay between continuity and change through the lullaby Y. has created, we are reminded that, while the world undergoes rapid changes, new generations replace older ones, and tradition is ever-modernized, some things remain constant and universal: the unconditional love of parents and caregivers for their children, and the heartfelt way in which this love is expressed when they lull their babies each night.
Artist collaborating with mother: Mostafa Ismail
Lullaby Supported by: European University
"Let us reveal to our children the beauty of music, and music shall reveal to our children the beauty of life" - José Antonio Abreu, Founder of El SIstema