Radio

Sundays 8pm to 11pm on Radio 2

September 28, 2014: Bob Mackowycz Jr.

September 28, 2014: Bob Mackowycz Jr.

George Stroumboulopoulos will be joined by Bob Mackowycz Jr. for another week.

Listen Past Shows

 

 

Social Issues
An Orchestra From A Landfill: Kids Make Beautiful Music Out Of Trash
December 10, 2012
submit to reddit

This is a teaser trailer for a documentary about a very special musical orchestra in Paraguay. The young musicians who play the instruments are residents of a garbage dump. And all the instruments played by the kids in the orchestra are made from trash.

The Cateura dump in Paraguay is the final dumping site for more than 1,500 tons of solid waste each day. And the waste is not managed well: the dump has caused the country's most essential water supply to become polluted, according to UNICEF.

That hasn't stopped people from living around the dump. Seven neighbourhoods are located there, with a total population of about 2,500 families. Most residents, including children, earn their living by sorting garbage for the recycling industry.

But something pretty amazing is happening at Cateura. Favio Chavez, who worked for years as an ecological technician at the landfill, decided to teach music to the children of the recyclers.

cateura-class.jpg

How do you find instruments in a place where, as one of the film's interview subjects says, "a violin is worth more than a house"? Well, you build them, out of whatever materials you can find.

Chavez used items he found in the dump to build violins, cellos, and other instruments. They are constructed out of oil cans, forks, old wood, beef tenderizers... Whatever can be repurposed to make a working instrument.

Now the kids play in "the recycled orchestra," an orchestra that plays only instruments made out of trash.

cateura-concert.jpg

The video at the top of the page is a teaser for an in-progress documentary called 'Landfill Harmonic'. The doc is billed by its creators as "a film about people transforming trash into music; about love, courage and creativity."

They're still shooting and shaping the movie at the moment, but they're hoping to release it sometime in 2013. You can visit their Facebook page to keep track of their progress.

Related:

Check Out This Symphony, Played By One Guy On Custom Instruments He Built Himself

Trash or Treasure?

Your New Car Is (Partly) Garbage. And That's A Good Thing

Comments

Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

Submission Policy

Note: The CBC does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comments, you acknowledge that CBC has the right to reproduce, broadcast and publicize those comments or any part thereof in any manner whatsoever. Please note that comments are moderated and published according to our submission guidelines.