The event commemorating the start of the World March for Peace and Non-Violence in tune with International Day of Non-Violence in honour of Mahatma Gandhi, at the Public College of Lawyers auditorium, Federal Capital, enjoyed the presence of actors Juan Leyrado and Jorge Marrale, classical dancer Maximiliano Guerra, actress Silvia Pérez, chef Martiniano Molina, musicians Raúl Porcheto, Miguel Cantilo and Diego Mizrahi and the band No Lo Soporto, among other influential celebrities from the Argentinian artistic and media scene.
In the recognition awards for work in favour of peace, Martiniano Molina was awarded for his project “Education for Peace”, which he is doing in the Quilmes area. The recognition consisted of a crane made in bronze from a cannon shell by Silversmith Master Payarolls.
In a series of interviews, some artists demonstrated what the World March for Peace and Non-Violence project meant for them and the relationship established between peace and the role of artist.
Juan Leirado, famous Argentinian actor, highlighted the role of artist linked to promoting peace: “We artists are basically not violent. The artist’s influence has to do with reaching the soul of the people, and the soul of the people is not reached with a bomb or with a grenade blast”. He also reflected on violence as a cultural aspect: Wickedness is a cultural topic. No baby awakes an idea in me something along the lines of ‘that baby has in its head that it is going to exterminate the human race, or a friend or a sibling’, afterwards it grows and goes to school which society imposes on it, to work which society imposes on it and s/he is being transformed into what society wants him/her to be transformed into, in someone who does damage to achieve things”.
For his part, Maximiliano Guerra, internationally famous dancer and named “Messenger of Peace” by UNESCO, showed his desire for the march to be repeated every year: “I think this is a wonderful project, hopefully it can be done every year to remove the absurd idea that everything is resolved by war and killing people. The solutions have to pass through humanisation. It is essential for us to join the World March because there is a lot of violence in all sectors, which perhaps is not very visible”.
Furthermore, Miguel Cantilo, singer-songwriter, reflected on the need for peace and its development: “I believe that stressing peace as a value is fundamental, more so when it is related to the arts. I meet people with whom we were reassessing peace as an individual and collective value many years ago”. In turn he recalled his choice for pacific art: “There are all kinds of art: indifferent art, pacific art and violent art. I chose pacific art and I always felt accompanied by people like John Lennon and millions of people who took peace as standard. I believe right now that peace is beyond the limit of a slogan’s ability. I believe that peace is a necessity that people have to live. And this need is a road towards its realisation. I believe that this kind of meeting strengthens the search for that road”.
The girls from No Lo Soporto were also present at the launch. Lara Pedrosa, bass player, explained the band’s participation: “I believe that the end of the World March for Peace is extremely noble. Hopefully it will cause a real impact. If one person from all those who have power and influence modified their attitude with the aim of reducing violence, then for us it was worthwhile”.
Raúl Porcheto, who sang a song inspired by peace, confirmed that “the most important thing is to think about peace and try to influence a system which is sustained through fear and violence”. He also shared his opinion regarding nuclear disarmament: “I am from an era when the first nuclear warheads were just being installed, but the industry has grown in such a way and with so much secrecy that the problem has become increasingly natural. The new generations have grown up with it; therefore it is important to raise awareness about the danger”. With regard to his role as popular singer, he confirmed feeling “obliged to denounce discrimination, assaults on mother earth and spread the value of peace”.
The tango singer, Guillermo Fernández admitted that “the moment has arrived when we have to stop saying that governments are to blame and begin to make peace within ourselves permanently. I believe that we have to become conscious of a time when we cannot live in the world as we are living now, and peace is the best medium that we have for rising above all the bad things afflicting us”.
When the act finishes, all the artists sing “Se alzan las voces”(the voices are raised), composed by Victorio Menghi for the World March for Peace and Non-Violence.
*(Translation provided by Rhona Desmond)*