Wednesday, 25 June 2014

WOMAN ON A MISSION: Rosina Moder's Epic Summer Action Plan

ON THE JOB: Moder (pictured here with Jamaica National's Earl Jarrett) has a packed next few months ahead.

Changing young lives: "I have a very busy summer ahead. I am assisting four students to go to Austria to do a post-grad year on music and movement," says the executive director of Music Unites Jamaica Foundation. "So we are doing heavy fundraising for these UWI students [Edna Manley College graduates] to get their scholarships. They are supposed to be going in the middle of September, so we have to find all the money before then."

Making music history: Moder is also a key member of a research team that received a grant from Jamaica National to fund the documentation of the legacy of Jamaica's largely unsung indigenous composers. "There are so many Jamaican composers that people don't know about, so we plan to produce a little handbook and hopefully have it out by the end of next year," Moder says. "I've found eight boxes containing music by Lloyd Hall. Sometimes these great musicians die, and all their music gets lost. People know a lot of Clyde Hoyt and Lloyd Hall songs, but they are nowhere published in one book. We have a lot of work to be done."

Keeping score: "We are working on the production of the first reggae opera, which Peter Ashbourne, my husband wrote," Moder shares. "We are hoping to get it on stage for May of next year."

Joining the good fight: Like so many of her peers in the arts, Moder firmly believes in staunch advocacy for the restoration of the Ward Theatre. "The Ward has to come back," she says. "It is the only theatre in Jamaica with a proper orchestra pit, where we can place in about 20 violins. The Little Theatre is too small. We would love to do the reggae opera here. Can you imagine?" A full-court press, she insists, will yield favourable results. "We have to get the political will, we have to get the artists together. We can't just let the Ward go down."

Going between the covers: Free time is always in limited supply, but reading remains one of Moder's most cherished passions. "I have about three biographies on Mozart which I haven't touched yet. I have the one by Hildebran in German and the others in English," she confides to TALLAWAH, adding, "I also need to read a book on vegan food and how to cook vegan food becasue I recently changed my diet. It's been going good. very strict. No gluten, no milk, no nothing. And then I think my summer will be done. 

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