BEIRUT: Around 40 Palestinian music students at Al Kamandjâti and Beit Atfal Assomoud performed in a fundraising concert on August 22 at Al-Madina Theatre, Hamra.
Aged between 6 and 18, aspiring refugee artists came from Shatila and Borj El Brajneh camps to fill the audience's hearts with the sound of hope.
The funds raised were donated to the musical scholarship program offered to Palestinian students in Lebanon's refugee camps.
"We want to change the image of refugee camps' in people's minds. Our optimism comes from our love to Palestine, and our hope is the light that will never be dimmed," said Nour Abourayya, program and activities coordinator at Al Kamandjati in Lebanon. "We sing for the regions and cities we've been plucked from and for our resilient parents there."
Conducted by Maestro Ali Abdo alongside Syrian and Lebanese teachers, "Our Music is the Hope" concert concluded a five-day summer camp, which took place in Kfardebian. The summer camp provides refugees with intensive music courses that allows them to prepare for the concert. Nonetheless, a year-long music program precedes the summer camp with music classes being offered to students every Sunday and Friday.
Aya, 13, choir singer, confirmed: "I felt at home in Kfardebian, exactly like in Shatila camp."
"It's my fourth time on stage. I used to be part of the choir, now I play the violin. This whole experience is a challenge to me: to improve and to deliver a message of hope. Responsibility breeds excitement," Hamza, 17-year-old violinist, told Annahar. "I train for 30 mins daily. We borrow instruments from Beit Atfal Assomoud for our music classes."
Lebanese musician Marcel Khalifeh also showed support to the music troupe and invited them last week to his concert in Jezzine.
Al Kamandjâti was founded by renowned Palestinian composer Ramzi Abu Redwan in 2002, France. In partnership with Beit Atfal Assumoud and with the support of the welfare association "Taawon" and "SELAT: Links through the Arts," the association started offering music classes in Shatila and Borj El Brajneh refugee camps in 2008.
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