Hungarian folk vocalist Márta Sebestyén designated UNESCO Artist for Peace

21-10-2010

Hungarian folk vocalist Márta Sebestyén has been named UNESCO Artist for Peace by the Director-General, Irina Bokova.

Márta Sebestyén is one of the leading voices of folk music in Hungary and a talented representative of a variety of musical traditions and musical idioms in Central and South Europe. She has worked for more than 25 years with the traditional ensemble Muzsikás and was the featured vocalist on the score of the Oscar-winning film The English Patient.

Her designation as UNESCO Artist for Peace recognizes "her efforts to strengthen, through music, the dialogue among cultures, as well as mutual knowledge and understanding between peoples, the core ideals and aims of the Organization".

As UNESCO Artist for Peace, Márta Sebestyén will contribute to the follow-up of the International Year for the Rapprochement of Cultures (2010), notably by highlighting cultural linkages between countries, particularly in South and Central Europe. She will participate in official UNESCO events, celebrations and juries to stress the role of artistic expressions as bridges for dialogue and will work to mobilize partners on the power of arts to build social cohesion.

UNESCO Artists for Peace are renowned personalities who use their influence, charisma and prestige to promote UNESCO’s message. Musician Manu Dibango (Cameroon), fashion designer Bibi Russell (Bangladesh), musician Gilberto Gil (Brazil), actress and singer Maria de Medeiros (Portugal) and writer Franketienne (Haiti) are among UNESCO Artists for Peace.