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  • Waldbühnenkonzert celebrates 15 years of West-Eastern Divan

Waldbühnenkonzert celebrates 15 years of West-Eastern Divan

The West-Eastern Divan Orchestra will return to Berlin once again this summer for their annual Waldbühnenkonzert, a magnificent open-air performance that marks the orchestra’s 15th anniversary. This year’s forest stage concert opens with Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 27, KV 595, featuring Divan co-founder Daniel Barenboim as conductor and soloist. Ravel’s Rhapsodie espagnoleAlborada del graciosoPavane pour une infante défunte, and Boléro close out the performance.

Purchase tickets to the performance.

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  • Announcing the 2014 Summer Workshop & Tour
    Photo © Monika Ritterhaus
  • Announcing the 2014 Summer Workshop & Tour
    Teatro Colón, Buenos Aires
  • Announcing the 2014 Summer Workshop & Tour
    Ayal Adler
  • Announcing the 2014 Summer Workshop & Tour
    Kareem Roustom

2014 Summer Workshop & Tour highlighted by Buenos Aires residency, European tour, and world premieres

The musicians of the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra will come together this August for their annual workshop & summer concerts: a residency at the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires, a tour to major music festivals in Europe, Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde in concert (Act II and Liebestod), and the world premiere performances of two new works by Syrian-born composer Kareem Roustom and Israeli composer Ayal Adler.

Explore the summer concerts & residency here.

Founded in 1999 by pianist/conductor Daniel Barenboim and the Palestinian author/scholar Edward Said, the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra is comprised of musicians from Palestine, Israel, and other Arab countries – as well as musicians from Spain and Germany.

In joining together to perform, the orchestra reaffirms its commitment to promote mutual understanding, non-violence, and reconciliation through music.

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  • In Pictures: January Tour 2014
    A representative from the UAE Ministry of Culture visits with the orchestra
  • In Pictures: January Tour 2014
    Arriving in Abu Dhabi
  • In Pictures: January Tour 2014
    Mariam Said greets UAE Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan
  • In Pictures: January Tour 2014
    Act II from Tristan und Isolde in Cádiz
  • In Pictures: January Tour 2014
    Cello sectional rehearsal
  • In Pictures: January Tour 2014
    Rehearsal break
  • In Pictures: January Tour 2014
    Rehearsal break
  • In Pictures: January Tour 2014
  • In Pictures: January Tour 2014

In Pictures: January Tour 2014

In January 2014, the musicians of the West-Eastern Divan reunited in Spain to prepare for concerts in Seville, Cádiz, and Abu Dhabi – the orchestra’s debut in the United Arab Emirates.

Photographs by Manuel Vaca.

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  • January 2014 concerts announced
    Photo © Monika Ritterhaus

West-Eastern Divan reunites for concerts in Spain this January

This month the musicians of the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra reunite for concerts led by Daniel Barenboim in Seville (January 19) and Cádiz (January 21). Their first performance together this year takes place on January 19, when the Divan co-founder conducts the Orchestra in a performance of the Second Act of Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde at the Teatro de la Maestranza. Two days later in Cádiz, Barenboim and the West-Eastern Divan perform Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony and Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante for Violin, Viola and Orchestra at the city’s Gran Teatro Falla. The January 21 concert commemorates the ensemble’s co-founder, the late Palestinian author and scholar Edward Said, who passed away ten years ago.

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  • Weizmann Institute awards Barenboim honorary doctorate
    © Uwe Arens / DG
  • Weizmann Institute awards Barenboim honorary doctorate
  • Weizmann Institute awards Barenboim honorary doctorate
    © Decca / Ben Ealovega

Weizmann Institute in Israel awards Daniel Barenboim honorary doctorate

The Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel awarded Daniel Barenboim with an honorary doctorate on 4 November, 2013.

I am deeply grateful to all the members of the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra, Israelis, Palestinians and other Arabs, for participating with me in this unique adventure that defies all accepted norms of political thinking and is willing to spare itself no effort in order to achieve the highest degree of musical excellence paired with the acceptance and participation of the other.

Read the full text of Barenboim’s keynote address.

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  • Barenboim to receive Freedom Award
    © Felix Broede
  • Barenboim to receive Freedom Award
    Guy Braunstein © Ofer Plesser
  • Barenboim to receive Freedom Award
    Saleem Abboud Ashkar © Peter Rigaud

Daniel Barenboim to be honored with Freedom Award of Freie Universität

Pianist and conductor Daniel Barenboim, co-founder of the West-Eastern Divan, will receive the Freedom Award of Freie Universität Berlin in an October 23, 2013 ceremony that will include performances by two former members of the West-Eastern Divan: Israeli violinist Guy Braunstein (former concertmaster of the Berlin Philharmonic) and Israeli-Palestinian pianist Saleem Abboud Ashkar. The Freedom Award honors persons who have advanced freedom in a political, social, or academic context.

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  • Remembering Edward Said
    Photo courtesy of Mariam Said

Remembering Edward Said

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  • 2014 Waldbühne Concert
    Photo © Manuel Vaca

2014 Waldbühne Concert:

The West-Eastern Divan Orchestra’s annual concert at the Waldbühne Berlin will take place 24 August, 2014.

Orchestra co-founder Daniel Barenboim will lead the orchestra in a program comprising Mozart’s overture to Le nozze di Figaro and Concerto for Two Pianos & Orchestra No.10 in E-flat Major, KV 365. The Orchestra and Barenboim will also perform Ravel’s Rhapsodie espagnole, Alborada del gracioso, Pavane pour une infante défunte, and Boléro.

Reserve your place now.

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  • In performance online: Opéra de Marseille

In performance online: Opéra de Marseille

Captured in a live performance at the Opéra de Marseille on 13 August, 2013, the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra’s concert of Verdi’s overtures to Les vêpres siciliennes and La forza del destino, as well as the composer’s preludes to Acts I and III of La traviata and Berlioz’s Symphonie fantastique is available for streaming through February 24 on France TV’s Culturebox. Enjoy the concert here.

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  • Radio France Interview

Radio France Interview

While the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra was on tour in Europe in summer 2013, Radio France spoke with four of its musicians  — Syrian violinist Nouras Hanana, Palestinian clarinetist Jussef Eisa, Israeli violinist Rachel Abitan, and Lebanese violinist Georges Yammine — and its co-founder Daniel Barenboim about the ensemble’s efforts to promote understanding through music. Click here to watch all five interviews.

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