Swiss Fiddlers – “End Racism” – A remarkable interpretation of “Ave Marie”

Mirjam Niggli is the founder and principal violinist of Swiss Fiddlers, charity project which aims to create awareness of the global refugee crisis, where more than 20 million people worldwide have been forced to leave their homes as a result of war or human rights violations. The idea of Swiss Fiddlers, was born out of recurrent bad news about the global refugee crisis. This crisis, along with racism, strongly affects Mirjam personally. Her father was Jewish, and her mother is Gipsy; both are fourth generation immigrants who travelled from the Balkans to Switzerland.

Swiss Fiddlers have now released the evocative 6 minute and 30 second music track, entitled “End Racism”. The song is a reworked orchestration of Franz Schubert’s “Ave Marie” which has been modernized by an arrangement that blends violins and an electro beat. The song also includes a powerful extract of a television interview with renowned American anti-racism educator, Mrs. Jane Elliott, who condemned racism with a clear and strong message about diversity.

“We hate because we’re taught to hate. We hate because we’re ignorant,” states Mrs. Jane Elliott. “We’re the product of ignorant people who have been taught an ignorant thing, which is there are four or five different races. There are not four or five different races. There’s only one race on the face of the earth, and we’re all members of that race. The human race,” she adamantly concludes.

Swiss Fiddlers, featuring Mirjam Niggli (Violin), Madeleine Niggli (Violin), Marko Hristoskov (Double Bass), and Luca de Falco (Cello) provide a captivating performance in “End Racism”, and one of its major charms is the way you can simply ignore the classical structure and the provenance of the piece, and simply sit back and enjoy the music-making. Mirjam and her musicians have provided us with a remarkable interpretation, which pays tribute to the stylistic coherence of the original, and freely lends itself to current trends.

The musicians involved in “End Racism” all partake of the same musical culture, so the song hangs together beautifully, providing both modern nuance, and the interconnecting melodic and harmonic links with the origins of “Ave Marie”. Mirjam Niggli’s playing is admirably agile and poignant, while having an ideal amount of bittersweet warmth to complement the intermittent narrative carried by Jane Elliot’s voice.

The small ensemble plays impressively, providing clear and unfussy support for Mirjam Niggli’s fine shaping of the violin melody. Together they bring a subtle variety of shadings and colorings to each phrase. I have nothing but praise for this recording, and such is its quality that I can safely recommend it to anyone interested in good thoughtful and impeccable music making. You don’t have to be interested in Classical music to find the performances on “End Racism” emotional and entrancing.

Other important team members who contributed to the project, include Mack Schildknecht ‘Mack Music’ (Recording Studio), Hardy Neumann (Video), and Jan Bjørneboe (Cover Art Work). “End Racism” by the Swiss Fiddlers, which is available on all major music platforms, invites people to fight together against racism. 75% of the proceeds will be donated to humanitarian charities.

About The Artist: Mirjam Niggli is a classical violinist. For her master’s degree, she was taught by Prof. Dr. Jörg Hofmann. She started her performing career at the young age of thirteen, playing together with her mother, the violinist Madeleine Niggli. They toured together in Asia, the USA, Scandinavia and Europe with their Gipsy music band, the Puszta Company. In 2007, Mirjam founded the Swiss Fiddlers, playing classical and gipsy music matched with house beats.

Mirjam on the first violin together with Madeleine on the second violin started out on a new career. The music attracted a wide audience among those wanting to experience virtuoso violin music at both clubs and festivals. International DJs from Venezuela, Chile, UK, Germany, Serbia, Bulgaria, Bangladesh, India, Japan and Australia created the sound-loops.  Close and important collaboration with the talented drummer, Mathey Hristoskov from Sofia, Bulgaria has been a significant contribution to this project; he mixed and mastered the music.


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