Maestro Armand Diangienda, speaker at The Culture of Innovation, ISPA's 65th Annual Congress, in New York City on January 15-17, 2013. View the full Schedule of Events.
Maestro Armand Diangienda
Armand Diangienda, born on January
12th, 1964, never attended a music school. Entirely self-taught, he was playing
the piano at age five and today his knowledge encompasses almost all of the
instruments of classical and modern music. He is the grandson of Simon
Kimbangu, founder of Kimbanguism, the third religion of Congo.
In 1992, Diangienda created L'Orchestre
Symphonique Kimbanguiste, the first all-black symphony orchestra in the world
and the only symphony orchestra in Central Africa. His compositions include the
symphony "Souffle de Vérité” and "Symphony
in A Minor” both of which retain influences of African culture.
Armand Diangienda has built his symphony orchestra from the ground up,
literally transforming his home into a make-shift conservatory. Full of
self-taught musicians, many of whom travel two hours by foot for rehearsals and
play on home-made instruments, this orchestra’s very existence provides hope
and promotes peace in a country full of poverty and war. Diangienda was the
focus of a recent 60 Minutes profile and the
recipient of the inaugural Charles Ansbacher "Music for All” Award.