International Council for Traditional Music

A Non-Governmental Organization in Formal Consultative Relations with UNESCO

ICTM Study Group on Music and Dance in Latin America and the Caribbean

Mission Statement

The purpose of the Study Group Music and Dance in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAT CAR) is to create a geographical and language-related accessible space for the study, practice, documentation, preservation, and dissemination of music, sounds, dances and movements in and from Latin America and the Caribbean.

The many diverse regions and peoples in Latin America and the Caribbean have commonalities in their historical, political, and migration backgrounds and identities. They share, among other aspects, a colonial past, the extinction or oppression of knowledges and practices, and the preservation and development of unique modes of existence. All of these processes have informed the Indigenous, African, and other experiences as well as forms of hybridization or mestizaje, which ultimately influence music, sound, movement and dances as culture and in cultures.

The Study Group welcomes epistemologies that reach beyond the notions of music, dance, sound, performance, and bodies in movement. In efforts to re-imagine the disciplinary boundaries of knowledge production, LAT CAR provides further spaces for music and dance performance-based-didactics, audiovisual, multimodal and applied forms of research. We also strongly encourage the participation of socio-politically underrepresented groups, such as individuals and communities that have been historically discriminated and marginalized by their ethnicity, race, gender identity, sexual orientation, class, religion, (dis)abilities, or political beliefs; thereby giving space and voice to the diverse narratives that shape this vast region of the world.

The motivation for founding this Study Group comes from the necessity to connect research perspectives, to help bring researchers together and to provide a platform of exchange and visibility for the ICTM from within the Latin American and Caribbean region. Considering the significance and the amount of research being done and the vastness of this region, the number of ICTM members based in Latin America and Caribbean has been relatively low, so far 37 members (as of May 2018). As our first meeting in Salto, Uruguay (further details follow in the symposium report) has shown with 170 participants from 16 countries, 110 proposals and 84 presentations, the contribution of this Study Group through its first (in-the- making) meeting alone is already very significant, if not historical for the ICTM. Future meetings should take place in contrasting Latin American and Caribbean regions (north, south, east, west) providing for further access and exchange. Given the purpose of this Study Group, to create a language related transregional and transnational research exchange network, LAT CAR intends to work closely with the existing regional Liaison Officers and National Committees, as well as encourage the creation of such channels of articulation, in order to further broaden the outreach and impact of the Study Group.

Organizational Plan

LAT CAR is open to all ICTM members who engage in studies or topics related to music and dance in and from Latin America and the Caribbean. LAT CAR is also open to researchers and students who are new to ICTM or were yet unable to connect due to financial, political, travel, or language issues, and therewith expand the ICTM community. The group aims to give wider visibility to a diversity of research and to alternative modes of knowledge dissemination, thus enriching the overall scope of themes for the ICTM. It encourages the participation of thinkers with approaches that span beyond the academic scope.

LAT CAR will serve as a permanent forum of exchange through a listserver, scholarly meetings, and publications. It will organize an international symposium every two years (off World Conference years). It will support thematic panels at the ICTM Worldwide Conferences. It will also use technology to host online presentations and previously recorded interventions to ensure a more inclusive participation. Furthermore, the Study Group intends to set up a video channel as well as a social media account and a website to facilitate the access to the information shared at our bi-yearly meetings to a wider audience and provide live feed coverage of some of our conference events.

As part of our work, the LAT CAR Study Group will seek publication of its symposiums’ output in the form of either conference proceedings, peer-reviewed stand-alone publications or guest-edited journal publications. In order to ensure appropriate visibility, LAT CAR publications shall be, as far as resources allow it, open access and available online.

In addition to the ICTM World Conferences and the common English language, the aim of this Study Group is to create a multilingual and a geographically-accessible space for ethnomusicological and ethnochoreological academic exchange. LAT CAR will highlight the geographical/regional, methodological and theoretical discourses within Latin America and the Caribbean in the framework of the ICTM. The current ICTM mission statement affirms, that “The International Council for Traditional Music is a scholarly organization which aims to further the study, practice, documentation, preservation, and dissemination of traditional music and dance of all countries” ( With this purpose in mind, we would like to provide a regional focus to ethnomusicology and ethnochoreology by including more accessible venues for ICTM gatherings as well as providing a link for speakers of different Latin American languages and a space to discuss the particularities of this part of the world. English translation on an individual basis will be arranged and coordinated for participants and attendants who are not familiar with local languages.

The steering committee shall be in place until the following business meeting.The next business meeting will be held in Bangkok 2019 where a board of executive members will be elected.

Future elections of executive members will be held at business meetings as well as online through digital elections supported by the General Secretariat.

Current Steering Committee

  • Hannah Balcomb
  • Nora Bammer (communications with ICTM)
  • Adriana Cerletti
  • Marita Fornaro
  • Jennie Gubner
  • Gabriela López
  • Javier Silvestrini (communications with ICTM)
  • Ana Silverio
  • Jessie Vallejo

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