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Les Ventistes du Faso

"Les Ventistes du Faso" is a project coordinated by Laurent Blondiau and Toine Thys. The goal is to develop the practice of wind instruments (woodwind and brass) in Burkina Faso, and encourage the creation of 'horn sections' quickly adaptable to existing bands. 

In Burkina Faso, the diversity and artistic level of traditional music is remarkable, yet, during recent travels Thys and Blondiau noticed that there were very few 'ventistes' (musicians who play wind instruments) in Burkina Faso. Unlike the coastal countries of West Africa, trumpeters, clarinetists, trombone players, tuba players and saxophonists are rather rare and have a lack of training. 'Les Ventistes du Faso' is a training project for musicians, that develops instrumental techniques and stimulates the creation of horn sections as well as the encounter with other artistic disciplines such as theatre, dance, storytelling,...). It includes several musical courses in Burkina Faso for the Burkinabe ‘ventistes’ as well as exchange programs with Belgium (AKDT, Lundis d'Hortense,...) for future trainers and luthiers / repairmen candidates.

In 2014, Thys and Blondiau worked together with luthier Maxime Plateau to start up different series of repair workshops for wind instruments. In this context they also organised the donation of instruments & material from Belgium in order to elaborate the existing collection of instruments and improve its condition. The workshops are mainly given to local teachers who can enable the project to have a long term development. 

Artistic coordination: Toine Thys, Laurent Blondiau

Info & contact: Toine Thys 
facebook.com/lesventistesdufaso 
With the support of Wallonie Bruxelles International, Music Fund, Selmer (Paris) and Vandoren