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Event Details
Global Week for Syria

Date: June-28-2017 08:00 PM till July-05-2017 08:00 PM
Location: College Hall, Auditorium B1
Contact Person: Events / Ext: 2685 ,
Category: Conference

The University Antonine

The Morgenland Festival Osnabrück

The Music and Beyond Foundation

Me’zaf Musical Cultural Initiative


in coordination with the Center for Civic Engagement and Community Service at the American University of Beirut


Global Week for Syria

In the framework of the 3rd edition of Global Week for Syria - Beirut festival and in partnership with me’zaf musical cultural initiative, and in collaboration with the UNESCO, the American University of Beirut, the Center for Civic Engagement and Community Service (CCECS), the Centre of Research on Musical Traditions of the University Antonine in Baabda, a three days’ conference will take place at the American University of Beirut: panel discussions, lectures and two concert will be presented around the Music Traditions in the Mashreq in the presence of scholars, professors and musicians from Lebanon, Syria, France, UK, and Netherlands.

Concerts in Assembly Hall at 8:00 pm

Wednesday, June 28

Osnabrücker Jugendchor (DE) conductor Clemens Breitschaft & University Antonine Choir (LB) conductor Father Toufic Maatouk

with Kinan Azmeh (SY) and Dima Orsho (US/SY)

Tuesday, July 4

« 4000 years of music from the Mashreq » : Antonine University Classical Arabic Music Ensemble (LB), concept, direction and violin: Nidaa Abou Mrad (LB), chanting and oud: Mohamad Ayach (LB), santur and simsmiyya: Hayaf Yassine (LB), qanun: Ghassan Sahhab (LB), chanting: Sleiman Abou Hanoud (SY), Rafka Rizk (LB)

Conferences in College Hall B1:

Sunday, July 2

3:00 pm - 4:30 pm

Panel discussion - me’zaf musical cultural initiative meets Salon Joussour in a panel discussion on different approaches and views on the notion of “authentic”, “classical”, and “contemporary” oriental music between the Netherlands and Lebanon.

Tony Overwater (NL) from Salon Joussour, Ghassan Sahhab (LB) from me’zaf

(Language: English)

4:30 pm - 5:30 pm

Lecture – presentation of different traditions in North East of Syria with live performance.

Ibrahim Kevo (SY)

(Language: Arabic)

5:30 pm - 6:30 pm Lecture – the geometry of the Maqam and its color.

Fawwaz Baker (FR/SY)

(Language: Arabic and French)

Monday, July 3

5:30 pm - 7:00 pm

Panel discussion – the life and work of the Aleppine musician Nouri Iskandar with recorded and live examples.

Moderator: Dr. Hassan Abbas

Ibrahim Kevo (SY), Fawaz Baker (FR/SY) in the presence of Nouri Iskandar.

(Language: Arabic)

Wednesday, July 5

6:00 pm - 7:30 pm Panel discussion - Musical Traditions of the Orient

Pr. Nidaa Abou Mrad (LB), Pr. Jean During (FR), Pr. Richard Dumbrill (UK)


A three-part musicological vulgarization conference on musical traditions of the Orient. Historical account of the musical traditions of Levant and Egypt (the Mashreq); musical antiquity of the Fertile Crescent; Tradition in the musical Orient: transmission, initiation, and mutations, in the face of modernity.

(Language: Arabic, French and English)


For inquiry:

Hannibal Saad, Festival director, Global Week for Syria | 00961 78 985 480

Areej Abou Harb, Co-organizer, me’zaf | 00961 3 946 528



Press Release

Global Week for Syria festival in Beirut is the central stage of a worldwide initiative with hundreds of artists from across the globe uniting for the idea of Peace and Co-Creation

As a part of Global Week for Syria initiative, for the second time the festival in Beirut will become the main stage of the project. This year Global Week for Syria worldwide is joined both directly with physical concerts, and virtually by online #4Syria action by about 35 countries. Among countries hosting the Project performances, conferences, and talks this year there are Lebanon, Netherlands, UK, US, France, Austria, Spain, Germany, Denmark, Canada, Ukraine, Malawi, Russia, Iran, Indonesia, India, Ireland and Scotland. 

On June 28th the festival, under the patronage and support of the UNESCO, starts in Beirut (Assembly Hall - AUB), in collaboration with Morgenland Festival Osnabruck initiating the Lebanese edition of Oriental Landscapes, with Osnabrücker Jugendchor (GR) and the Antonine University Choir (LB), Kinan Azmeh (SY) and Dima Orsho (US/SY). 
The festival continues for 10 days of concerts, workshops and conference in 5 places in Lebanon (Beirut, Aley, Minyara, Tripoli and Bekaa valley).

The Global Week for Syria Beirut festival will present Dutch, Swiss, Swedish, Norwegian, French, German, AzerbijianiAzerbaijani, Turkish, Tunisian, Iraqi, Lebanese, and Syrian musicians, scholars and other cultural activists united to share their energy and mastery to encourage hope and belief in positive future.

Festival Venues: Assembly Hall – AUB, Al Madina Theater, Metro Al Madina, Dar El Nimer, Safadi Center, t-marbouta, Mezyan, and others.

Among the festival highlights: Morgenland All Star Band: Dima Orsho (SY/US), Ibrahim Kevo (SY), Moslem Rahal (SY), Salman Gambarov (AZ), Ziya Gückan (TU), Kinan Azmeh (SY/US), Frederik Köster (DE), Andreas Müller (DE), Rony Barrak (LB), Michel Godard (FR) and Bodek Janke (GR). 
In addition to Osnabrücker Jugendchor (DE), Université Antonine Classical Arabic Music Ensemble (LB), Université Antonine Choir (LB), Andreas Schaerer (CH), Håkon Kornstad (NO), Sonbola Choir (SY), Tony Overwater (NL), Mark Schilders (NL), Nareg Abajian (SY), Mark Schilders’ Fabrik (NL), Bert Cool (BE), Star of The Orient (SE/SY/TU/IQ), Moussa Elias (SE/SY), Robert Ikiz (TU), Maarten Ornstein (NL), Nidaa Abou Mrad (LB), Fr. Toufic Maatouk (LB), Ghassan Sahhab (LB), Hayyaf Yassine (LB), Mohammad Ayyash (LB), Sleiman Abou Hnoud (LB), Rafka Rizk (LB), Mouhannad Nasr (SY), Rami Al Jundi (SY), Fawwaz Baker (FR/SY), Nouri Iskandar (SE/SY), Liliane Chlela (LB), Fouad Afra (LB), Fredrik Gille (SE), Samuel Rohrer (CH) and Khaled Yassine (LB), Khaled Omran (SY), Dani Shukri (SY) and Yalla Choir (SY/LB). 

Global Week for Syria is a multidisciplinary call for peace, support and co-creation. It is the project aimed at raising awareness, creating platforms and stimulating artistic co-creations between Syrian musicians and local/international musicians. 

The international program of the Global Week for Syria includes:
•    Music Festival in Beirut – Lebanon, Beirut; June 28 – July 5 2017
•    Live Concerts, Fundraising Events and Conferences in 35 cities across the globe
•    Over 100 Online Performances (#4Syria action)
•    Talks and Panel Discussions* with scholars and cultural activists in Lebanon (Beirut) and The Netherlands (Leiden and The Hague).
•    Musical and Cultural Workshops in Lebanon
•    Oriental Landscape in Netherlands (Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague, Leiden, Utrecht):

*The talks will focus on possibilities for safeguarding Syrian cultural heritage.
Following the flow of expert discussions today, in the conference edition of
2017 we want to concentrate specifically on the role of local communities in preserving both intangible and tangible cultural heritage:
•    Role of intangible heritage in times of war 
•    Role of local communities in keeping heritage alive where it is and where it moves to
•    Role of music and culture in safeguarding cultural heritage
•    Role of culture in integration

 “For me it is a week of sharing music with the world. Of celebrating the miracle of peace through music. Since the war in Syria shattered our lives I decided not to take things for granted. Having a week like that is a miracle in itself. It is important to savor the ecstasy of life. Those few beautiful moments of our lives. Music is a mix of immediate expressions of feeling about the present that summarizes many immeasurable things. Sharing these moments with many people around the world is even more beautiful. We want to share with the world beautiful things about Syria”

Hannibal Saad (initiator and the artistic leader of Global Week for Syria)

Notes for Editors:

Global Week for Syria around the globe:
The festival takes place in 35 cities around the globe: Lebanon, Netherlands, UK, US, France, Austria, Spain, Germany, Denmark, Canada, Ukraine, Malawi, Russia, Iran, Indonesia, India, Ireland and Scotland; 
The worldwide activities in the framework of Global Week for Syria take place from June 15th – July 5th   

About the organizer:
The main organizer, initiator and coordinator of Global Week for Syria is the lead nonprofit organization Music and Beyond based in the Netherlands.  Music and Beyond is directly in charge of planning, promoting and production of the main stage in Beirut and the 6 cities in the Netherlands. Our partners manage all the other concerts around the globe, while M&B is coordinating all the events.

The mission of Music and Beyond is to stimulate understanding, promote diversity and foster respect through open dialogue and the diffusion of knowledge for cultures in conflict. M&B achieves this through music and other forms of art in creating cultural exchange initiatives and projects between East and Western nations with the specialization in Syrian-Oriental and Eastern European cultures.

The project is made possible thanks to many partners: organizations and institutions like UNESCO, Morgenland Festival Osnabruck, Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Swiss Embassy in Lebanon, Re:Orient, European Union, Dutch National Performing Arts Funds (FPK), FELM, Goethe Institute, French Institute in Beirut, Université Antonine, me’zaf, Yalla! Pour Les Enfants, Mishwar, t-marbouta, and Mezyan.

Information on artists and upcoming events can be found via: 
Twitter: syrianmusiclive


Artistic director and conductor: Toufic MAATOUK                 
The Choir of Université Antonine belongs to the Faculty of Music at Université Antonine. Being faithful to the monastic tradition of the Antonine Maronite Order, the choir has contributed since the eighties in the cultural enrichment of the Lebanese musical life by its repertory focusing on the Antonine musical tradition. Its repertory is also rich in classical and contemporary music. The Choir of the Université Antonine has performed concerts and has done tours in Rome, Milan, Nice, Lyon, Monaco, St. Etienne, Doha, Dubai Al Aïn United Arab Emirates, Jordan, Bahrain, Cyprus, Tbilisi, Paris, New york, Los Angeles, Muscat, Naples etc.… It has participated in the Classical Music Festival of Al Ain (Emirates Arabs Units 2008-2009), Al Bustan International Festival (2009-2016), Byblos International Festival (2010-2011-2013-2014), Baalbeck International Festival (2011), Beirut Chants Festival-Lebanon (2008-2016), Ehdeniyat (2016), Tbilisi Opera Festival (2012), Festival d'Ile de France (2012-2013) and Bahrain International Music Festival (2013). In May 2010, April 2013 and May 2015, the choir performed at the legendary Carnegie Hall in New York. It made its Los Angeles debut in April 2014, performing at the Marsee auditorium at El Camino College, and the LA City Hall. In November 2016, the choir made his debut at the San Carlo opera house season performing Mozart’s Requiem together with the choir of Teatro San Carlo at the Duomo in Naples. Lately, the choir has represented Lebanon in the opening of the Lebanese Pavillon at the 57th Venice Biennale (May 2017) and performed the premiere of ŠamaŠ Itima (Obscure sun) a 32 voices a cappella piece composed by Zad Moultaka. 
The Choir performed with several orchestras such as the Lebanese Philharmonic Orchestra, Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra, Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra, Opera Romania Timisoara (Qatar), Orchestra of Teatro di San Carlo- Napoli, New England symphonic ensemble (New York), Tbilisi Symphony Orchestra (Georgia), Musica Sinfonia de Los Angeles, The State Youth Orchestra of Armenia, Orchestra dei pomeriggi Musicali (Milano) Orchestra Giovanile Mediterranea (Palermo) etc.…
The numerous CDs of the Maronite religious traditions for the Choir of Université Antonine have been produced by the editions of Université Antonine.

Events & international Concerts 
Église Saint Chamon- (Saint Étienne, France) 2007
Église Saint Pierre d’Arène – (Nice, France) 2007
Cathédrale de Monaco (Monaco) 2007
Théâtre de la Mairie (Divonne les Bains, France) 2007
Cathédrale Saint Jean (Lyon, France) 2007 
Dubai Financial Center (UAE) 2008
Al Ain classical music festival (UAE) 2008
Al Ain classical music festival (UAE) 2009
Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore (Rome, Italy) 2010 
Carnegie Hall (New York) 2010
Basilica di San Pietro (Vatican) 2011
Basilica di Santa Maria in Trastevere (Rome, Italy) 2011
Georgian opera house (Tbilisi) 2012
Festival Île de France (Paris, France) 2012
Festival Île de France (Paris, France) 2013
Carnegie Hall (New York, USA) 2013
Bahrain National Theater (Manama, Bahrain) 2013
Our Lady of Mount. Lebanon Cathedral (Los Angeles) 2014
Marsee auditorium at El Camino College (Los Angeles) 2014
Carnegie Hall (New York, USA) 2015
Teatro San Carlo (Naples- Italy) 2016
Duomo di Napoli (Naples- Italy) 2016
Basilica di Santa Maria in Trastevere (Rome, Italy) 2016
Biennale of Venice (Venice, Italy) 2017

The Osnabrück Youth Choir

was founded by Johannes Rahe in 1974 and consists of about 60 young adults most of whom received choral training with the Osnabrück Cathedral Choir.
The choir focuses on church music from its beginnings to the present day, including experimental music. Its high quality is documented by numerous CD recordings, broadcasts and TV productions. The choir has toured many parts of the world including South America, USA, Canada, Japan, Ghana and most European countries. In cooperation with the “Morgenland Festival Osnabrück” the choir recently visited Iran (2009), Syria and Jordan (2010); in 2013 some of its members toured Kurdistan/ Northern Iraq.
In 1982 the Youth Choir was awarded the First Prize in the First German Choir Competition as well as a special prize of the city of Cologne for the best performance of a contemporary choir composition. The choir has since won several prizes in international competitions. It now enjoys the reputation of being one of the best choirs of its kind in Europe.
The Youth Choir cooperates with choirs, orchestras and conductors from all over the world. At symposia and festivals as well as by means of choral experiments the Youth Choir – sometimes in collaboration with various musical and artistic partners – contributes to the ongoing development of choir music.
A specialty of the choir is its “mixed formation”: singers of one voice type are not placed together but stand next to singers of other voice types, which favours a greater independence and a stronger blending of individual voices. Since 2012 the choir has been directed by Clemens Breitschaft.


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