What does Living Freedom mean to you?

Regional songwriting contest launched
Living Freedom

FNF Offices in Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, and Thailand, together with its Regional Office for Southeast & East Asia, jointly launched Living Freedom Songwriting Contest on 29 May 2020.

In an online event filled with music, the offices introduced their respective contest mechanics, and invited singer-songwriters to submit their entries. FNF, a German Foundation that promotes political, social, and economic freedom, recognizes the importance of individual freedom in all these spheres.

EUR 500 contribution to the production cost and a trip to Manila await the top artists in the country level. They will participate in the regional round with a chance to perform in Germany.

The contest also offers mentoring sessions, song broadcast on FM radio stations, and networking opportunities. Online performances are scheduled before the live event in Manila.

Submission of entries is open. Click here for more details.

Looking for freedom

Looking for Freedom by American actor and singer David Hasselhoff topped the German charts during the summer of 1989 before the fall of the Berlin Wall. His New Year’s Eve concert, where he performed the song, is etched in German memory as part of a celebrated moment in history.

“But t’s not actually a political song. It’s a personal song of a young boy who wants to be independent of his rich father. It’s about individual freedom,” explained Frederic Spohr, Head of FNF Offices of Thailand and Malaysia at the online presentation of the songwriting contest.

Spohr went on to say that 30 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall, things have become very different around the world. He pointed out that authoritarian regimes are again getting stronger, but counter movements that reflect people’s desire to be heard try to keep it at bay. “What’s interesting is that all these democratic movements have their own song. Music is a tool to raise people’s voice,” observed Spohr.

Freedom as something you experience yourself

When asked about what Living Freedom meant, FNF Philippines Program Officer Eunikkoh Castillo answered that it was about continuous learning. “Then I can be the best version of myself and contribute to my community,” said Castillo.

Vera Putri, Program Manager of FNF Malaysia Project, replied that Living Freedom translated to playing an active role in creating positive change, as well as bridging hopes with one another. Than Naing Aung, FNF Myanmar Program Assistant echoed this, and added that doing what one believes in without fear was freedom’s essence.

“What freedom means to every individual can be different,” stated Dr. Almut Besold, Head of FNF Indonesia and Malaysia. She shared her conversation with her children on Living Freedom. Besold’s five-year old kid’s response was: becoming 13 and being allowed to have a puppy; while her 10-year old said: freely biking around the city. “In the end, we discovered that we are happy when we can pursue what we have in mind, notably without harming others,” concluded Besold.

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