Nia Wa Ja Shu – Make the World New A Choral Cantata to Build Communities

In March 2020, days before the first lock-down in Germany, we had our final rehearsals for the world premiere of ‘Nia Wa Ja Shu – Make the World New’ together with more than 260 students and many teachers of a well-known liberal arts school in Germany (Camerloher Gymnasium Freising). The new dramatic choral work, composed by Peter Michael von der Nahmer (New York), has been inspired by ‚Fridays for Future‘-Movement and features ‚paper‘ as a former main carrier of information through the ages – starting from hand-writings to a disposable information carrier of today.

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak in Germany, the world premiere with several performances with 750 visitors each had to be cancelled. Only one performance in front of a camera to record the video could take place. But, this situation has given rise to a project in which many young people have a voice for themselves and their future and the questions that come with it. The young musicians and singers felt understood. They are still able to convey their message over the internet and receive feedback from all over the world.

Even if COVID has forced us all to a different lifestyle and even if the focus of the news is limited to these topics, we should not forget that both art itself has and has always had a meaning, that it brings people together, that it can help to convey and address important issues and that there are still many things in this world that are important to think about.

Story shared by Peter Michael von der Nahmer, Germany.

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