Sustainability of the Bigwala musical heritage of Busoga kingdom, in Uganda
This study intended to investigate the sustainability of the bigwala musical heritage of Busoga Kingdom, in Uganda. The escalating extinction of rustic music traditions across the globe leaves bigwala heritage in a highly threatened situation. Bigwala is played to enthrone a King of Busoga, during royal funeral rituals, and in the communities. Basoga communities put in place measures to create a new generation of players by transferring knowledge and skills from the surviving elders to youths. Given the negative attitude that youths generally have towards traditions of this nature, it is doubtful that the practice of this heritage will be sustainable. A phenomenological study approach was used to investigate the viability of this heritage. The objectives of this study were: to establish the practice of bigwala Musical heritage in Bugweri and Bukholi chiefdoms in Busoga Kingdom; to find out the threats to the sustainability of bigwala Musical heritage in Bugweri and Bukholi chiefdoms in Busoga Kingdom; to suggest ways of ensuring the sustainability of bigwala Musical heritage in Busoga Kingdom. Findings revealed that bigwala was entrenched in the Kingdom practices and people generally revere their cultural institution. This entrenchment as well as the Basoga peoples’ devotion to their cultural institution, and values was found to be the main contributing factor to the practice of bigwala for many years to come. The Basoga people learn music orally and aurally and this facilitated the creation of bigwala musical communities with structures for the continuation of this heritage. It was recommended that bigwala communities should look up more opportunities for performance of this heritage to increase their economic benefits, involve school in the practice and write resources for teaching this heritage in schools in case it does not violate the traditions of the practice altogether.