Barenboim’s West-Eastern Divan Orchestra in Tahrir Square?

Posted on: August 18, 2011

A report Tuesday (8/16) on the Monsters & Critics news site states, “Daniel Barenboim, the Berlin-based conductor, proposed Tuesday an open-air concert by his orchestra of Jewish and Palestinian musicians on Tahrir Square, the symbolic home in Cairo of Egypt’s Arab Spring uprising. An equal number of instrumentalists from both sides of the Mideast conflict perform in his West-Eastern Divan Orchestra, founded in 1999 to promote reconciliation between enemies through a love of culture. On Monday, the orchestra played Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony for an audience of 8,000 at the armistice line between North and South Korea. The ensemble has performed on the West Bank but never in Israel. ‘We would like to play in the Gaza Strip, on Tahrir Square in Cairo and in Israel too,’ said Barenboim, 68, in a telephone interview from Seoul before the orchestra flies to Germany for more concerts. Tahrir Square was the center of the Cairo uprising against former president Hosny Mubarak at the start of this year, with protesters risking their lives as pro-Mubarak groups responded with mob violence.”

Posted August 18, 2011