[QODLink]
Witness
88 Keys in Cuba
How an Irishman and a musical community came to the rescue of Cuba's pianos.
Last Modified: 25 Jan 2009 08:36 GMT


Watch Part 2

Filmmaker: Elizabeth Jones

Since Fidel Castro's Communist revolution six decades ago, Cuba has been on the frontline of an international power struggle.

Crippled by a punitive trade embargo imposed by the United States in 1962 the Caribbean island was supported by the USSR.

Witness


 - Watch more documentaries online

But when the Soviet Union collapsed economic aid dried up.

Since then life has been hard for this outpost of communism to keep its people fed and watered.

One thing that has helped sustain Cubans over the years is their love of music and the Russians helped establish a music education system which continues today.

But not without some difficulty. The US trade embargo, coupled with a hot and humid climate, spells disaster for musical instruments, especially the piano, many of which are slowly dying.

It is a serious problem that one visitor took to heart.

Elizabeth Jones' film 88 Keys in Cuba examines how Irishman Ciaran Ryan was inspired to come to the rescue of the island’s pianos with money raised by the music community back home.

Source:
Al Jazeera
Topics in this article
Country
Featured on Al Jazeera
Swathes of the British electorate continue to show discontent with all things European, including immigration.
Astronomers have captured images of primordial galaxies that helped light up the cosmos after the Big Bang.
Critics assail British photographer's portrayal of indigenous people, but he says he's highlighting their plight.
As Western stars re-release 1980s charity hit, many Africans say it's a demeaning relic that can do more harm than good.
Featured
Remnants of deadly demonstrations to be displayed in a new museum, a year after protests pushed president out of power.
No one convicted after 58 people gunned down in cold blood in 2009 in the country's worst political mass killing.
While hosting the World Internet Conference, China tries Tiananmen activist for leaking 'state secrets' to US website.
Once staunchly anti-immigrant, some observers say the conservative US state could lead the way in documenting migrants.
NGOs say women without formal documentation are being imprisoned after giving birth in Malaysia.