Rosemary Nalden of The UK

UMURAGE Legacy Maker Rosemary Nalden

It was a day like any other in the Hampstead Village in London. Taking a break from her busy schedule as a freelance viola player, she was looking forward to some well-deserved ‘me time’. All she wanted to do was to put her feet up and quietly listen to the BBC. Little did she know her life was about to change forever. The voice on the BBC was talking about a little string project in the unlikeliest of places; Soweto! It was in trouble and she was about to come to the rescue. Her name is…

Rosemary Nalden…

… a viola player and singer classically trained at the Royal College of Music with over 25 years of experience as a leading member of some of England’s greatest ensembles and Orchestras.  

Hearing about the string project and the peril it was in was a call to action she could not ignore. She gathered around 120 of her musician friends and organized impromptu musical performances known as busks in London’s rail stations.

The idea was to raise enough funds to help, send it over and get on with her life. It was the birth of Busk Aid.

A month later, the British Consul in South Africa invited her to visit the school she helped. Before she knew it, she was headed there.  In the midst of a very volatile community in a rundown hall, she heard the children play. She was hooked. It was in 1992.

 Five years later, she came back and founded the Soweto String Project and naturally named it Buskaid. From a new location, she trained the older students to teach the younger ones. The result is one of the best string ensembles that has since toured all over the world and played in prestigious places like the Royal Albert Hall.

Though she needs all the help she can get in funding the school, Rosemary found her calling and has no plans of giving up. To the children of Soweto, she is a Godsend. 

Right Your Legacy, Rosemary Nalden!


TEDx Observer, Rosemary Nalden