ReSoXy is a project to reinvestigate, revive and recreate the music practice of the manza xylophone, a forgotten music instrument of the customary chiefs and notables of the Azande people in northern Democratic Republic of CongoThe instruments were acquired by the Belgian expeditors and ethnographers for the Royal Museum for Central Africa (RMCA) in Tervuren, Belgium in the late 19th century and the beginning of colonization, and have become the silent witnesses of the disrupted cultural heritage and colonisation ever since. The project aims at configuring ‘a different same’ for the instrument collection, and re-establish the contemporary meanings for these objects and communities that have been erased and reshaped irreversibly by colonization.
In collaboration with RMCA, the project focuses on a triangular interdisciplinary methodology to unmute the instrument collection with creative and participatory approaches. The methodology includes music experimentation (music sampling, building replicas, and historical sound recordings), participatory creative actions (co-creation and co-experimentation with source and diaspora communities, researchers, students and musicians in Europe) and ethnography (archive studies, interviews and field studies). Apart from breathing new ideas to the forgotten instruments, the project will bring impact to both academic and artistic world in terms of decolonial and multicultural values, as well as non-Western musical sound, techniques and creative ideas.