“The fundamental question we sought to answer in establishing these Awards is one which I think is applicable to any initiative which is aimed at nurturing and supporting cultures at risk: How do we protect the past and inspire the future? How do we reshape and reposition knowledge and taste and appreciation in the public psyche, and among those who play a role in developing human habitat?”
His Highness the Aga Khan, Delhi, 27 November 2004
At a ceremony in the gardens of Humayun’s Tomb in Delhi, the
Aga Khan was joined by India’s Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, to present awards to the seven recipients of the 2004 Aga Khan Award for Architecture. The announcement marked the completion of the ninth triennial cycle of the Award programme, which has a prize fund of US$ 500,000, the world’s largest architectural award. This cycle's recipients were:
For more information, please see the Award page.
40 Central Asian Dancers and Musicians Receive Excellent Reviews on Five-week European Tour
From 25 September until the end of October, 40 musicians and dancers from Central Asia selected by Aga Khan Music Initiative in Central Asia (AKMICA) toured Europe for five weeks. Major venues included the English National Opera in London, the WOMEX World Music Expo in Essen, Germany, the Ultima Contemporary Music Festival in Oslo, as well as venues in Brussels, Turin and Dijon. The tour programme also featured numerous educational events such as workshops, lecture-demonstrations and master classes. Reviews were exceptional in London, where the Times gave the concert four out of five stars and the Independent gave it five out of five. At the World Music Expo in Essen, Germany, booking agents and music presenting organisations crowded the AKMICA stand in bids to bring the AKMICA musicians to their venues in 2005. For more information, please see the AKMICA page.
In September, the German government signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with His Highness the Aga Khan. The aim of this agreement is the deepening of cooperation between the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and the Aga Khan Development Network, particularly in crisis prone-countries of Asia and sub-Saharan Africa. Partnership between Germany and AKDN already spans many years. It began with the critical support for the cultural restoration of the Old Stone Town in Zanzibar. In recent years, the collaboration has extended further to Pakistan, Tajikistan and Afghanistan, in areas of community development, food security and alternative livelihoods, health, micro-finance and institution building. Please see Aga Khan Addresses German Ambassadors and Joint Press Release by the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN).Azhar Park in Cairo Opens to the Public
After a trial period, Azhar Park in Cairo opened to the public on 1 October 2004. The response to the park has been exceptional, with many Cairenes flocking to what is being called by the press an "urban oasis" and "Cairo's Central Park". The Park was especially busy in the evenings during Ramadan. For more information, please see Azhar Park Project (Cairo) on-line press kit.
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