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UNESCO, in collaboration with Action for Hope, launched a program to revive the musical traditions of Mosul


As part of its #ReviveSpiriteofMosul initiative, UNESCO launched a program to revive the musical traditions of Mosul in 2019, together with partner Action for Hope.

After several months of silence due to the pandemic, last week the musicians of Mosul got together and organized two concerts in the old city’s “khans”. The first concert was presented by six of the master musicians who had earlier participated in a seminar on traditional music, and the second concert was presented by 13 young musicians from Mosul and other parts of Nineveh who were trained over 9 days by some of the music masters.  The concert program included pieces from the Syriac, Turkmen, Rural (Rifi) and Mosuli music traditions.  Both concerts were well attended by Mosul residents, including many women and young people. 

Basma El Husseiny, Director of Action for Hope, said, ”The enthusiasm of the young musicians who took part in the workshop, and their commitment to their art, reinforced our belief in the great creative potentials of post-war Iraq.  We are now more determined than ever to support young Iraqi musicians and to help them better understand their diverse musical traditions and their significance in restoring social cohesion“.

Tahani Saleh, Moslawis activist, said, “When Mosul returned to its people after the war, all I could think of was that music should also return to the city.  Music should be rescued like human beings were rescued.  I believe that people who preserve their musical heritage are living people and the harder their life is, the more creative they will become.  What Action for Hope did in the two concerts in Khan Hammou Al Qaddou and Khan Al Goumrok was to regain Mosul’s voice.  The music was lovely and it renewed hope in our hearts.  I wished the concert would last for hours; we are music loving people who are never tired of listening to tunes and songs and creating them, even if we are shy in publicizing this.”

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