Resonance: Musical Heritage of La Francophonie Previous   Next


When people of traditional societies make common objects used in everyday life or exceptional objects for ceremonial purposes, they display more than skill: the form and decoration of the objects are an expression of their culture.

— Denise Gluck and Georges-Henri Rivière,
Arts populaires des pays de France,
vol. 1 (Paris: Joël Cuénot, 1976), p. 6, translation


Musical instruments play an important sociocultural role in all societies, often being associated with religion, magic or the exercise of power.

  Photo: Carmelle Bégin

A medium through which a particular repertoire of melodies and rhythms is expressed, musical instruments are also a means of communication among members of a community. In all religious rituals, they serve as intermediaries between the human world and the spiritual world. They play a symbolic role because they represent the temporal or spiritual power of a person or a group.

All societies have music. In this exhibition, we will discover various forms, uses and sounds of musical instruments from around the world, as well as materials used to make instruments.