Barenboin and his Orchestra: a World legend

daniel-barenboim-1236877143-editorial-long-form-0The West-Eastern Divan, an “unusual” orchestra formed by Jews, Palestinians and Arabs, will be 20 years old in 2019. It has reached “an unexpected level” and is “a legend” in the world but has not succeeded, regrets in an interview with EFE its founder, Daniel Barenboim, be recognized in the region.

The director and pianist, born in Buenos Aires in 1942 in a Jewish family of Russian origin and with Argentine, Spanish and Israeli nationality, founded the orchestra with the Palestinian philosopher Edward Said in 1999 and, after passing through Weimar (Germany) and Chicago (USA), was definitely installed, thanks to the financial support of the Junta de Andalucía, in the Seville town of Pilas.

His “settlement” in Andalusia was in 2002, an event “very important” in the evolution of the formation but with the passing of the years “it has not been necessary” to keep that place even though the headquarters of the foundation are still there: “the orchestra has another life, “he says.

“When we started in 1999, 60% of the musicians had never played in an orchestra and they had not even heard one live in. In just 8 years they were able to interpret the Schoenberg Variations in Salzburg and Pierre Boulez – one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century- he told me that he had never heard anything like that “, he presumes.

The orchestra, with which he undertook the project to record the entire cycle of Beethoven’s symphonies, has reached “an unexpected level” and is, he emphasizes, “a legend in the world, but not in the region -Israel and Palestine- because they do not talk to each other. “

“We have many fans and detractors, yes,” admits the musician, who has always argued that the problem of the Middle East is not philanthropy or its solution “military” or “political” but “human”.

Barenboim, who has just presented with a tour in Spain – Oviedo, Madrid and Barcelona – his latest album, “Claude Debussy”, is now focused on a project of music education in schools and has promoted the opening of “a kindergarten” in Berlin so that the children begin to familiarize themselves with her from an early age.

“It’s extraordinary how well it works, but, of course, they leave the garden with 6 years and then there is no continuity, that’s why we have reached an agreement to include a more defined musical program in the first grade. the artist, who “sees no reason” despite his long residence in Germany to also acquire that nationality: “I’m not German but I’m from Berlin”.

He is sure that only that education will mean the survival of classical music among the public in 50 years, although he now has “enough” to say about how spectators behave in concerts, which already, on several occasions, has disfigured his “contrarecital” of coughs, mobiles or candy wrappers.

“I remember very well a recital by the great Andrés Segovia, requetelleno, with 200 or more people on stage, there were four sonatas by Father Soler and we could hardly hear the loud coughs.” Segovia stood up and looked at the audience. a handkerchief, put it in his mouth, coughed and showed how it was done, it had an extraordinary effect, “he recalled.

He himself has already done so several times, the last on the 11th at the Palau de la Música in Barcelona, ​​when after an interlude of “Les Preludes” he took a handkerchief out of his pocket and stared at the spectators while he I had to mouth.

“I have the feeling that the ear is very disadvantaged with respect to the eye, hearing is very important, when you think there is ‘music’ in elevators, in restaurants, in airplanes … I mean, you’re used to hear the music, not listen to it. “

In a concert hall, he says, “not only will music be heard: the pleasure that can be derived from a concert is much more than what is heard” and that is why it encourages an “absolute concentration” on what happens on the stage.

He does not believe that the big tours with orchestras like the one he’s been directing for 25 years, the Staatsoper unter den Linden, never finish because they are “very positive for music.” What is needed, he demands again, is education and training in the schools”.

“A Bag of Marbles”(“Un sac de billes”), french movie about the Holocaust

un sac de billesDate: 2017

Time: 110 min.

Origin Francia France

Director:Christian Duguay

Screenwriters: Jonathan Allouche, Christian Duguay, Alexandra Geismar, Benoît Guichard (Novel: Joseph Joffo)

Photo: Christophe Graillot

Casting: Dorian Le Clech, Batyste Fleurial, Patrick Bruel, Elsa Zylberstein, Christian Clavier,César Domboy, Ilian Bergala, Kev Adams, Lucas Prisor, Bernard

Producer: Quad Productions / Main Journey / Forecast Pictures / Gaumont / Okko Productions

Drama | WWII. Nazis. Holocaust(Shoa). Family

Plot: Second World War. Maurice and Joseph are two young Jewish brothers who live in Nazi-occupied France. To save themselves, they must abandon their family. Showing great cunning, courage and ingenuity to avoid enemy invaders, the two brothers will try to reunite their entire family again in the free zone of southern France.


Antisemitism seminar in Spain

antisemtism in SpianThe Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports, the Federation of Jewish Communities of Spain (FCJE), the Embassy of Israel and the Sefarad-Israel Center have organized a seminar on anti-Semitism in Spain, especially for teachers and all interested persons, who will take place on January 17 and 18 in the Torrelaguna street in Madrid, at the headquarters of the National Center for Innovation and Educational Research.

The inauguration of the course will be in charge of the president of the FCJE, Isaac Querub; the director of Centro Sefarad-Israel, Miguel de Lucas; Israel’s ambassador to Spain, Daniel Kutner; and the Minister of Education, Culture and Sports, Íñigo Méndez de Vigo, as foreseen in the program.

Among the lectures on Wednesday January 17 highlight one that will address ‘The new and the old in contemporary Spanish anti-Semitism’ as well as another about ‘The fight against anti-Semitism, today, in Spain’, in which the president of the Movement will intervene against Intolerance, Esteban Ibarra; the general director of the FCJE, Carolina Aisen; the director of ‘The Face of Truth’ (Israel), Gabriel Ben-Tasgal; and the director of the Pluralism and Coexistence Foundation, Rocío López.

The participants will also address ‘Anti-Semitism in the Classrooms: How to detect it and how to fight it’ and will share the educational projects and didactic materials on anti-Semitism and holocaust developed in Spain.

There will also be a meeting of Spanish specialists in the study of anti-Semitism, in which they will intervene, among others, the specialist in Spanish bibliography of Judaica and writer Uriel Macías; the journalist and writer Miquel Segura; and the professor of the University of Alcalá de Henares Jon Juaristi.