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Monday, January 28, 2013

Barenboim and the Legacy of Said in New York

Several years ago I declared that Daniel Barenboim, the famous musician, and Edward Said, the well-known writer and academic, should be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize one day for their co-founding of the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra--made up mainly of talented Arab and Jewish young people.  It was peacemaking and understanding via collaboration (and countless hours of socializing).  And it has had an amazing impact--too detailed to describe here--even though both Hamas and Israel have been opposed. 

Anyway:  Said, also a musician, passed away not long ago.  Barenboim continues to draw praise for this effort and, as a conductor, recently brought the complete Beethoven symphonies to London.  Starting this Wednesday he is doing the same in New York at Carnegie Hall, and I will be there on Sunday.  But as a bonus, I somehow secured tickets to a special "club date" tomorrow night, at hip Le Poisson Rouge in the Village, where Barenboim is bringing along a few of the Divan musicians.  One of their offerings:  the debut of a clarinet compositon, "Prayer for Edward Said."  More and video here.  

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