Sunday, October 27, 2013

Justice Through Music

A Syrian-American composer Malek Jandali has made it his responsibility to better the lives of the Syrian children with classical music ( His hometown, Homs, is one of the areas that have been affected the worst by the Syrian conflict. All of his music is related to his home country and recently described as politically charged, but now he attempts to create a positive change for Syria through his compositions. Jandali, also a human right activist, visited Syria last time in October 2012. There, he saw the conditions of the innocent children, victims of the war, and taught them how to play music.

Back in the United States, he was inspired to start a benefit concert tour named The Voice of the Free Syrian Children. The main message of the concerts is to spread awareness of the crisis to Western people; figuratively speaking, giving voice to the children of Syria. He chose to focus on the children to get as far as possible of the issues of religion and politics. Jandali himself has experienced the suppression of the government when openly criticizing the Syrian regime. But instead of deferring, he wrote anti-government odes. Jandali is hopeful about the future; he has already composed a new national anthem for the Syria that will emerge after the war ends.

The idea of bringing extra musical concerns to a concert performance is a great vehicle for raising awareness. Music can be a powerful tool in getting one’s point across. We as Western people may feel quite removed from what is happening in Syria. The concert experience will help us to attach emotion to the abstract idea of the Middle-Eastern conflict. This emotional connection will inspire the audiences, who are affected by his message, to seek education regarding the conflict. 

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