Frau Ute Hermann and Joan (1)As one of her first official duties as president of AOSA, Joan Stansbury represented the organization at the 2015 Orff-Schulwerk Forum held in Salzburg on July 2 – 5, 2015. This year’s discussion topic was “Interculturality and Orff-Schulwerk”. Representatives from thirty-six Orff-Schulwerk Associations and Associated Schools/Institutions discussed the “Why”, “What” and “How” of respectfully and authentically including music of other cultures in our classrooms. Thoughts were shared on the importance of including music from a variety of cultures, the need for accurate, authentic resources, and the sensitivity and respect required when using such resources.

On Wednesday evening, a wonderful performance of Carmina Burana and Catulli Carmina, by Das Collectif was presented to Forum attendees followed by a lovely reception hosted by the Carl Orff Foundation. Activities concluded on Sunday with the convening of the 31st General Assembly, where two new OS Associations – Colombia and Iran – were recognized, along with the newest Associate Institution, The American Center for Elemental Music and Movement (ACEMM). The Orff Foundation, represented by Frau Ute Hermann, gave an update on the renovation of Carl Orff’s home in Diessen am Ammersee, which will eventually become an international meeting place for scholars and musicians.

As a leading member of the forum, AOSA provided a donation to assist two other national organizations with membership dues. We are honored to collaborate with the Croatian Orff-Schulwerk Association and the Lithuanian Orff-Schulwerk Association as they promote OS in their countries.

Next year will see two exciting additions to the calendar. The eleven Orff Schulwerk Affiliated International Schools are beginning a project in which they choose a piece from the Volumes to develop with their children throughout the year, and which will be shared at next year’s Forum. 2016 will also be a Symposium year, the topic of which will be “Elemental Music and Dance Education in the Changing World of Media.”