International Council for Traditional Music

A Non-Governmental Organization in Formal Consultative Relations with UNESCO

DEADLINE HAS BEEN EXTENDED: 19 MARCH 2023 - Call for Proposals 12th Symposium of the ICTM Study Group on Music and Minorities KELANIYA, SRI LANKA, 5-8 DECEMBER 2023





(Onsite / Online)



Welcome to the 12th Symposium of the ICTM Study Group on Music and Minorities, which will take place at the University of Kelaniya, Sri Lanka, between 5 and 8 December 2023!

One of the symposium days will be programmed jointly with the ICTM Study Group on Indigenous Music and Dance. The symposium will accommodate both onsite and online presentations in the English language.


  1. Diaspora/Translocality in Music and Dance of Minorities
  2. Theoretical, Methodological, and Governmental Implications for the Study of Music and Dance of Minorities
  3. Music, Dance, and Minorities Across the Indian Ocean
  4. (Musical) Differences and Commonalities Between Indigenous Peoples and Minorities
  5. New Research     



  1. Diaspora/Translocality in Music and Dance of Minorities

Minorities are often defined as such within a new context, due to the diaspora of communities that crossed borders. Cultural practices within the community and sustained or new relationships with the motherland (now increasingly via online platforms) produce various forms of translocality, particularly through the performing arts. This theme envisions a discussion of music and dance of minorities in diaspora and the production of translocality considering border-crossings, encounters with the ‘other’, and the cultural homogenization-heterogenization continuum within both the new setting and a global context. How is translocality produced by specific performers and ensembles; how is it maintained (or not) with adaptations to other minorities or dominant groups; how do new hybrid forms and contexts produce translocal performing arts? This theme proposes an exploration, discussion, and perhaps new conceptualization of diaspora and/or translocality for the music and dance of minorities.

  1. Theoretical, Methodological, and Governmental Implications for the Study of Music and Dance of Minorities

From its inception, the Study Group pays considerable attention to the continuous refinement of theory and method to enable better understanding of social and political realities of the minorities and to maintain the influence of this specific field of study on contemporary ethnomusicology. Scholarly understanding of minorities is complex and nuanced, based on the awareness of polyvocality within each minority over the issues such as heritage production, ownership negotiation, hybridization, and “cultural defence of borders”. Researchers interact in various ways with the respective governmental bodies, which often view minorities as “clearly delimited groups, each with 'its culture’,” distinctiveness of which should be protected and promoted (Ceribašić 2007). This theme calls for presentations addressing the strategies, existing and envisioned, in accommodating these contrasting views in our work.

  1. Music, Dance, and Minorities Across the Indian Ocean

The realm of the world's third largest ocean encompasses 38 countries of Africa, Asia, and Oceania. A long history of maritime contacts in this large and culturally diverse region involves both peaceful activities such as the mutually beneficial trade and armed conquests, some of them leading to centuries of colonial presence of various European nations in the region. The resulting migrations and nation-building processes affected various groups of people nowadays seen as minorities. This theme calls for presentations focused on music and dance-related issues among indigenous, migrant and other minority groups that are at higher risk of discrimination on grounds of ethnicity, race, religion, language, gender, sexual orientation, disability, political opinion, social or economic deprivation across the Indian ocean.

  1. (Musical) Differences and Commonalities Between Indigenous Peoples and Minorities

We chose this theme because many Indigenous people are also minorities, but not all minorities are Indigenous. How are these boundaries between minority status and Indigeneity negotiated, changed, performed and captured through musical practice, dance and related art forms or music and dance education and pedagogy?

  1. New Research and Sustainable Development Goals 3 and 16

We welcome presentations which address new research relevant to Indigenous music and dance and minority concerns. Additionally, we encourage the submission of proposals focusing on Sustainable Development Goals 3 (Good Health and Wellbeing) and 16 (Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions).



Individual Paper

Each presentation will be allotted 20 minutes inclusive of illustrations and examples, plus 10 minutes for questions and discussion. The Program Committee will organize individual proposals that have been accepted into thematically related sessions. Please submit an abstract of 250 words outlining the content, argument, and conclusion, and indicate the symposium theme to which it should be placed.


Organized panel sessions of 90 or 120 minutes are highly encouraged. A panel consists of a group of three or four papers that are entirely planned, coordinated, and prepared by a group of presenters, one of whom is the responsible coordinator/chair. The proposal should contain a 250-word shared abstract and 250-word abstracts of each participant. Each panel proposal will be accepted or rejected as a whole.


Roundtables refer to the sessions featuring discussion related to one of the symposium themes. They are prepared and coordinated by a group of four to five participants, one of whom serves as the responsible convener. A roundtable of 90 minutes starts with a short statement by each participant, followed by a coordinated exchange of arguments by the participants. At the convener’s discretion, the audience can be asked to take an active part in the discussion. The convener should submit a 250-word proposal with its aims and the roles of the individual participants.

Film Presentation

We also encourage proposals for film presentations related to one of the symposium themes. Please submit an abstract of 250 words indicating the length and the content of the film.



Proposals should include the data related to the submitters (name, institutional affiliation, mailing address, phone number, e-mail address, confirmation of the ICTM membership), and to the submissions (title of the presentation, type (onsite or online), format (paper, panel, roundtable, or film), and required technical equipment.

Proposals of 250 words should be sent to Hande Sağlam, Secretary of the ICTM Study Group on Music and Minorities, at by the deadline 19 Mach 2023.


The reviewing process of the proposals will be anonymous. Please note that each participant is limited to a single presentation. Notifications of acceptances and rejections will be sent to the submitters by 20 March 2023.



Svanibor Pettan (Chair), Francesca Cassio, Lasanthi Manaranjanie Kalinga Dona, Hande Sağlam, Mayco Santaella, Muriel Swijghuisen Reigersberg


Lasanthi Manaranjanie Kalinga Dona and Anjalee Wickramasinghe (Co-chairs), Aistha Amarakoon, Nadeeka Guruge, Chandana Ruwan Kumara, Lanka De Silva, Ranganath De Silva, Milinda Thennakone

An organized excursion is envisioned for 9 December 2023 as an extra payment event.

Please take a look of the self-presentation of the hosting institution: