Out of an urge to produce and release his own music and put his ideas out, Edgar started leading his own projects, such as producing albums and organising concert series and tours.
Cultural Empowerment and Education
‘In 2010, after the Young Sinatras ended, I was looking for new opportunities’, Edgar tells. The experience of producing his own projects served him getting a job as a cultural project leader in Schilderswijk, a large multi-cultural neighbourhood in The Hague. The job was quite versatile: Edgar was responsible of handling grants requests, giving advice on policy decisions and having the artistic direction of projects for the community. ‘I had a lot of freedom to design projects that fit my own ideas’. Like, to make projects that would benefit several target groups from the community in a way that a broad amount of participants would get something out of it.
‘One of my favourite drummers and percussion players has always been Robertinho Silva. I had known him from his work with Wayne Shorter and a lot of other projects. When I saw this movie of him explaining how he put together this drumschool in Rio, I knew I had to bring him over’, Edgar explains his philosophy. What Edgar found inspiring about him was not only his musical legacy, but also the fact that he educated people from the slums and made it possible for them to build and sell their own musical instruments. ‘It was this musical and practical empowerment that made want to do this project with Robertinho.’
Edgar invited percussion legend Robertinho Silva to come over to the Hague and give workshops, inspire and perform with scholars, members of Antillean brass bands, and Capoeira dancers.
for more information about these projects, please visit: way2gomusic.nl
Project for rappers and beatboxers
He also organised a project for rappers and beatboxers from the area and hooked them up for a workshop and performance with British beatboxers Schlomo and MC Zani. The enabled the participants also to perform at Paard, the biggest pop venue of The Hague.
Producing Concert Series and Festivals
The experience as a project leader in Schilderswijk also led him to the next step: to co-found a foundation to lead projects that have a combination of performances, participation and education.
This foundation is called www.wordtownmusic.nl, and as a director, Edgar started to put his own projects, festivals and concert series together. He contributed to the celebration of International Jazz Day in The Hauge by producing www.jazzdays.nl, with headliner Ed Motta.
More recently, he produced www.roadmaptofreedom.nl, a project that celebrated the 75th anniversary of the liberation of the Netherlands with a jazz concerts series, workshops and other activities.
Edgar started two concertseries in a historical venue, one called ‘You’re in the Army Now’, focussing on jazz musicians that started their career in the US Army. The other called ‘Continental Call’, a series celebrating the fertile crossbreeds between jazz and musical styles from all around the world.
For more in depth information on Edgar’s work as a project leader, visit www.way2gomusic.nl and www.wordtownmusic.nl.