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The Social and Educational Project Clavé XXI

Fotage of the documentary 'Music for the social cohesion' of the program Latituds of Canal 33

The Orfeó Català-Palau de la Música Catalana foundation runs the Clavé XXI project, a community initiative that sets out to foster social inclusion for children and young people through choral singing.

The project, which is supported by the "la Caixa" foundation and the collaboration of  Fundació Caixa d’Enginyers, linked to the Youth Choir of Clavé XXI,  was set up in 2011 as a pilot project in the conviction of the enormous power for personal and social transformation of choral singing, and with the intention of extending the work of the OC-PMC foundation to the community around it.

The Clavé XXI social and educational project now takes in 83 choirs, with children and young people from social organisations and boys and girls from primary schools, most of them in the Ciutat Vella district, other neighbourhoods in Barcelona and also different towns in Catalonia, including Sabadell, Mataró, Manlleu and Banyoles, involving a total of 1.900 singers.

With this scheme, the Fundació OC-PMC Social Project commemorates the figure of Josep Anselm Clavé, a leading figure in the history of choral singing in Catalonia. In the late 19th century Clavé was a pioneer in starting up schemes of a social nature related to music. Clavé brought choral singing to factory workers who had no access to culture and suffered hard working conditions. Choral singing represented an alternative to tavern life for them.

Some years later, in 1891, Lluís Millet and Amadeu Vives set up the Orfeó Català, which rejuvenated choral singing with its innovative approach. The Orfeó Català began life with four intrinsic principles: excellence, Catalan identity, participation and social commitment. With the new Orfeó Català-Palau de la Música Catalana foundation strategic plan, rolled out in 2011, the organisation has set out to recover these four values, which structure its whole artistic programme and all its activities. Clavé and his choirs symbolise participation and social commitment, values that, through the Orfeó Català Choir School, inspire the Palau de la Música Catalana’s Social Project for the 21st century.