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News Story - Buskers on ice! Antarctic musicians go out to play - for musequality

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Date: 16 Jun 2009

The Antarctic Minkes, a group of three bass guitarists and one saxophonist working at the British Antarctic Survey Rothera Research Station in Antarctica, took part in the first ever Musequality World Busk on Sunday, 14th June. They entertained passers by on the ice — their team members in the small crew of 20 people based at Rothera during the Antarctic winter.

“We’re thrilled that the Antarctic Minkes busked for us. They are definitely the coolest buskers on the planet,” said David Juritz who founded Musequality in June 2007, kickstarting its funding by busking round the world.

The Musequality World Busk started on Monday, 8th June and finished on Sunday, 14th June when young buskers were particularly welcome to join in, helping Musequality achieve its aim of the biggest coordinated busk around the world.

The busk will support Musequality’s existing communal music-making projects, and set up new projects, for disadvantaged children in the developing world, giving them the skills and qualities they need to turn their lives around. The charity already supports five projects — two in Kampala, Uganda, two in South Africa, and one in northern Thailand. It is actively fundraising to start a new project for street children in Goa, India.

It takes its inspiration from El Sistema, Venezuela’s national youth music programme which took London by storm in April, Buskaid in South Africa, and the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra founded by Edward Said and Daniel Barenboim.

“The money buskers raised will help us expand our existing projects — one, the M-Lisada Brass Band in Kampala, rehearses under a tree and badly needs a rehearsal and performance space — and start new ones — we are working to start a project for street children in Goa, India,” David Juritz explained.

Donations are still welcome on the Antarctic Minkes Justgiving page and the World Busk Justgiving page.