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After 17 years, the school faces a financial crisis that threatens its closure. Nearly 70% of its 80 full-time students can’t afford to pay their tuition, which comes to about $13 USD per month, according to an official DCMA press release. While the school has received support over the years from international donors and diplomatic missions, they face a gap in funding that may force them to shut their doors at the historic Old Customs House.

Global Voices Blog, September, 22 2019

“The Dhow Countries Music Academy (DCMA) is offering free music lessons to children with Down syndrome and autism in Zanzibar. The initiative, which began last month, is meant to boost self-esteem in children with physical and mental disabilities on the archipelago.”

 Music In Africa, April 4, 2018, musicinafrica.net


“The DCMA programme aimed at serving, as a model for other developing schools in neighbouring parts of Africa, for example the Comoros and Ethiopia, to follow.”

Daily News, October 29, 2015

At the heart of this growth is the Dhow Countries Music Academy (DCMA), located in Stone Town. Its location, overlooking the Indian Ocean, epitomizes the revival of a rich heritage.With no music lessons in the Island’s curricula, the DCMA is a fortress of musical culture.

The New Time, March 3, 2011, allAfrica.com

“The success of DCMA is demonstrating to the donor community that it is a strong and transparent organization performing a needed job assisting African students to present their cultural expressions and from this to be provided with economic sustenance.”

The African, Monday, April 13-19, 2015

“DCMA keeps traditional music alive”

Daily news on Saturday, March 29, 2008

“Since 2002, DCMA has turned out to be the sole academy in the island that provides an opportunity for the inhabitans of Zanzibar and Dhow region to study music related to their cultural background and thus preserve the rich musical heritage of Zanzibar”

Daily Times, December,09,2005

“The Dhow Countries Music Academy (DCMA) in Stone Town, Zanzibar is known for its promotion of music traditions of the dhow countries surrounding the Indian Ocean from which dhows carried commodities to the East African coast.

The Dhow Countries Music Academy offers lectures, concerts, instrumental and vocal instruction, accommodation and food for student groups for any period of time at any time of the year. Programs for Columbia University, University of Washington music education projects, students from Norway and Tanzania outside Zanzibar and other locations have enjoyed great success.”

Journal of International Library of African Music

“DCMA takes Zanzibar music to higher levels.”

The African, Monday, April 13-19, 2015

“For the last years, Dhow Countries Music Academy  in Zanzibar (DCMA) has been in the pinnacle of promoting the rich culture of Unguja and Pemba islands.”

The Citizen, Thursday, February 13, 2014

“In the last years DCMA has developed into a meeting point for Zanzibars vibrant music scene”

Karibu Zanzibar No.2, January to March 2008

“The Academy gives the inhabitans of Zanzibar, and the whole region, the opportunity to study and learn a variety of musical styles”

The Guardian, April 24, 2003

“DCMA is working tireless to train a new generation in Zanzibar, where there are signs of its revitalizations”

Daily News, Friday, January, 16, 2009