Media interview for the Lyrics Competition “If we sing them to you”

Our rights become songs 

The media interview regarding the lyric composition competition for children and adolescents conducted by the Network for Children’s Rights (NCR). 

A different lyric competition was presented by NCR in an online media interview organized on Thursday the 28th of January 2021 and coordinated by the documentary film maker Giorgos Avgeropoulos 

It is a lyric writing competition inspired by children’s rights, in which NCR calls for all children to participate. As noted by the President of NCR, Miranda Papadopoulou, “every child, of any age up to 18 years old, can draw inspiration from each and every right included in the International Convention for the Rights of the Child, write lyrics and send them to NCR, which will undertake giving them   music with the help of many special friends. 

These friends are Aggelos Aggelou, Foteini Velesiotou, Giorgos Gkonias, Spyros Grammenos, Foivos Delivorias, Nikos Zoudiaris, Tatiana Zografou, Christos Thivaios, Kostas Leivadas, Aristides Marantos, Savveria Margiola, Andianna Babali, Dimitris Bashlam, Dafni Panourgia, Maria Papageorgiou, Antonis Papatheodoulou, Thodoris Papaioannou, Kostas Parissis, Stavros Siolas, Babis Stokas, Georgia, Nefeli Fasouli, Giorgos Charoniotis, Giorgis Christodoulou, Burger Project and Dilemma 

With this competition the goal of the Network is twofold: to inform and raise public awareness concerning children’s rights, and also to encourage children themselves to get to know their rights, be inspired by them and express themselves creatively 

As noted by Antonis Papatheodoulou, writer of children’s books who participates in this project, the idea for the competition started out a bit differently, over a morning coffee with, also writer and director of the Network, Panos Christodoulou: “We were discussing with Panos how more than 190 countries (Greece among them), who disagree on so many things, have all agreed on something, to sign the Convention for the Rights of the Child. Unfortunately, this one thing which they agreed upon, they do not apply in action and at the same time there are many adults and children who are completely oblivious to these rights. How could they learn them? Perhaps through songs? Perhaps if we sing them?”

A special workshop for children from NCR was created, which with the help of Antonis Papatheodoulou and educator Koula Panagou, through imaginative activities and lots of playing, they created lyrics for the right to free time (article 31) and the right to family life (article 9), which were later set to music by Foivos Delivorias. The experience was unique and led to the decision of inviting even more children to participate, creating even more lyrics for even more rights. And so, the competition was created.  

According to Tatiana Zografou (lyric-maker – composer), who had supported projects of NCR  in the past, the competition is focusing on the pedagogical role of song and grants children the opportunity to express themselves and speak through the writing of lyrics.  

For Aggelos Aggelou (composer, co-creator of the artistic group Kopernikos), NCR’s initiative functions as a bridge between different ages, as  generations talk to each other and an opportunity is given to children to communicate their needs to adults in a creative way.  

The lyrics can be in Greek, as well as in English, while any children who desires so can also send NCR complete songs (lyrics and music).  

For Theodoris Papaioannou (writer and composer), music is the greatest tool to spread children’s rights. Moreover, since it constitutes an international language, it can even bring children themselves closer together and help in accepting diversity. From his perspective, song-maker Stavros Siolas, noted that he considered children’s rights to be a norm “but this is not actually the case. Consequently, there is a need to inform and initiatives such as NCR’s with the lyric composition are precious”.  

So, these lyrics will become songs and the songs will be featured in  collectible vinyl for children’s rights. According to Kostas Parissis (orchestrator – producer) the aim is not to create just another collection of children’s songs, but an album signaling children’s freedom to express themselves and take a stance on their rights. The album will be released in limited copies, with different covers created by known illustrators such as Vasilis Papatsarouchas, Maria Bacha, Mirto Delivoria, Irida Samartzi, Chara Marantidou, Achilleas Razis and Daniella Stamatiadi. 

All information and terms of the competition can be found at mas-ginontai-tragoydi/ and by dialing 210 8846590. 

Watch the entire press interview: