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"DATABASE of Albanian FOLK ISO-Polyphony", -"A masterpiece of oral and intangible heritage of humanity", UNESCO, 25 Nov. 2005.CONVENTION FOR THE SAFEGUARDING OF THE INTANGIBLE CULTURAL HERITAGE, Paris, 17 October 2003, Article 12 – Inventories: To ensure identification with a view to safeguarding, each State Party shall draw up, in a manner geared to its own situation, one or more inventories of the intangible cultural heritage present in its territory. These inventories shall be regularly updated.

The establishment of the iso-polyphony DATABASE, is a goal also provided in the Convention on the Intangible Heritage, Article 12, paragraph 1 and 2. To ensure identification with a view to safeguarding, each State Party shall draw up, in a manner geared to its own situation, one or more inventories of the intangible cultural heritage present in its territory and Each State Party provides specific information regarding these inventories in their periodic report to the Committee, as provided in the Article 29.

The Albanian Iso-polyphony was proclaimed by UNESCO a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity in 2005. This database will in fact constitute a full inventory of the Albanian Folk Iso-Polyphony. The following categories will constitute the Database and the Catalogue:
1. Individuals and groups performing traditional folk iso-polyphony in rural areas;
2. Saze music and saze singers, instrumental groups of urban folk music;
3. Individuals and groups, playing traditional instruments of iso-polyphonic music;
4. The folk activities dedicated to Albanian Folk Iso-Polyphony
5. The legislation and other legal measure
6. The vocabulary of Albanian Folk Iso-Polyphony words
7. The genre of albanian folk Iso-polyphony
8. The instrument of Albanian Folk Iso-Polyphony
9. The tangible heritage related to Albanian folk Iso-polyphony etc.

The documentation will include certain types of personal data, photos, bibliography, audio or video materials and musical transcriptions of their interpretations. The Database will primarily serve the interests of the communities, and it will be particularly useful in transmitting the experience and skills of those performers to the younger generation. This inventory will at a later stage be included in the Albanian National Inventory of the Intangible Cultural Heritage, which will be carried out by the Ministry of Culture in the framework of the 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage. This activity involves inventorying and documentation of skilled performers of iso-polyphony: individuals, groups, whose experience and contribution is of special importance for the safeguarding and promotion of Iso-polyphony. The database will also be open for consultation to local and foreign researchers. The primary beneficiaries of the project are the performers of Albanian iso-polyphony, and in particular, the youth who wish to learn the traditional songs, performance techniques and styles. The benefits are expected to further extend to primary and high school students, with the help of a multi-media awareness campaign. The secondary beneficiaries of the project are the scholars of the Albanian iso-polyphony, the specialists of the intangible cultural heritage in the Ministry of Culture and the Academia, as well as the general public. The long-term objective of this project is the safeguarding and cataloguing (in the sense of the UNESCO Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage) of the Albanian folk Iso-polyphony.


The mid-term objectives of the projects are:
- To encourage the transmission – in particular inter-generational – of the Albanian iso-polyphony by adapting the traditional modes to the new social realities;
- To build local and national capacities for the safeguarding and transmission of iso-polyphony and the Albanian intangible cultural heritage in general, through support and development of practitioner and custodian networks, and the elaboration of the Inventory of the Performers of Albanian iso-polyphony;
- To increase the public awareness of the Albanian iso-polyphony and to revive the interest in it among young people.


The Database will help with the following:
1. Better access of the wide public audiences and better awareness and popularity of the values of the "Intangible Heritage Masterpieces"
2. The documentation of the iso-polyphony heritage from various angles or viewpoints: musical, language, costume, instruments and the crafts related to the livinghood, its carriers and its bands of all kinds, generations, and both sexes.
3. The provision of the opportunities for the online exploitation of the audio and video documentation for the pupils in the basic and high education, because, the iso-polyphony has been included in the school curricula of the Musical Education in the 5th to the 9th grade of the 9-year education and the 10th grade curriculum - "Our cultural heritage" - in the upper secondary schools;
4. The provision of the necessary information for the wide audience, local or foreign one, concerning the values and the importance of the Iso-polyphony for the establishment of the Albanian cultural identity, etc.

All the DATABASE will be made available online through an abridged Internet version at: www.isopolifonia.com. These inventories shall be regularly updated.