December 2016 saw All Stars Inclusive, the mdw’s inclusive band, receive the € 25,000 Diversitas Prize of the Federal Ministry of Science, Research, and Economy. Since this band was formed in 2010, interested individuals with and without handicaps as well as their friends and/or helpers have been meeting weekly at the Department of Music Education Research, Music Didactics, and Elementary Music Education (IMP) to make music together with music students.
Working as a group, the band’s members arrange their favourite songs and also compose new ones. The band gives music students the opportunity to gather experience with inclusion in the context of music education. People with and without handicaps can indeed make music together as an ensemble – with encountering each other on an equal footing and learning from each other being the goal, here, towards which band members work under the musical leadership of Bernhard Lengauer (and Marlene Lacherstorfer, currently on leave).
This model project is accompanied from a scientific angle by Beate Hennenberg of the mdw’s Department of Music Education Research, Music Didactics, and Elementary Music-Making. The band has already performed in contexts including the Vienna Sound Festival, the Volkstheater’s Rote Bar, and at the award ceremony for the literary prize “Ohrenschmaus”.