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Tuesday, February 18, 2014
Heartbeat: Israeli-Palestinian U.S. Tour
Posting on behalf of Avi Salloway
Good day my friends,
My Israeli and Palestinian brothers and sisters are coming to tour the USA! Tomorrow I will embark on a three week tour with Heartbeatto bring the sound of a better future in the Middle East to America. As the eyes of the world turn to top Israeli, Palestinian, and American leaders in the final stage of negotiations, Heartbeat takes the stage across the East Coast to call attention to the vital role of civil society in building a lasting, just peace. The tour will culminate with a performance and briefing at the U.S. Congress, calling on Washington for a $50 Million investment in People-to-People diplomacy via the International Fund for Israeli-Palestinian Peace.
Heartbeat’s youth led movement combats the tidal wave of fear, violence, and injustice with powerful sounds and voices singing for cooperation and equality. It doesn't matter where you're coming from or where you're going, the message inspires people of all backgrounds to work together to be the change we seek. Please join us and spread the good word.
Love, Avi Wylder
The Heartbeat US Tour:
2.20 – Clinton, NY – Hamilton College
2.21 – Bennington, VT – Bennington College
2.22 – Cambridge, MA – Harvard University
2.23 – Boston, MA – The Boston Jewish Music Festival
2.24 – Boston, MA – Boston College
2.25 – Windham, ME – Windham Performing Arts Center
2.26 – Burlington, VT – University of Vermont
2.27 – Middlebury, VT – Middlebury College
3.1 – Philadelphia, PA – Congregation Rodeph Shalom
3.2 – Penn Valley, PA – Congregation Beth Am Israel
3.5 – New York, NY – Le Poisson Rouge
3.8 – Takoma Park, MD – TP Community Center
3.11 – Washington, DC – The US Congress
A little more about my work in the Middle East
In the heat of the Arab Spring, I decided to travel to Israel and Palestine to experience life in the region beyond the narrow narratives that I was exposed to, to get a feel for the Palestinian and Israeli people and their realities. My guitar and songs served as my thread, connecting me with Arabs, Jews, and the international community as I explored the power of music to unite these adverse populations. I began working as a music and dialogue facilitator with Heartbeat, the Israeli-Palestinian youth music community based in Jerusalem. I started guerrilla recruiting youth artists from all over the region. As genuinely as possible, I would try to get them to trust me enough to want to come join Heartbeat for jam sessions, workshops, writing, performing, and recording retreats. I would make friends with Palestinian rappers and they would take me to underground hip-hop parties in East Jerusalem and I’d meet other cats and we’d jam and the circle would grow bigger. My method was similar with the Jewish artists, although a little less foreign to me.
My time in the Middle East was deeply transformative. I experienced first hand the formation of true friendships and trust building in the face of xenophobia and war. Through the more and more Israelis and Palestinians that I met, I was exposed to the silent majority of Arabs and Jews who yearn for a safe, equitable future. These are the voices that the Heartbeat community are comprised of and these are the voices that the world must hear! Since my trip in 2011, I have become acutely invested in working with Heartbeat and amplifying these powerful sounds for a better future. Our debut tour last year was a resounding success and I cannot wait for the tour that lies ahead. I hope you will join us and raise the courageous call for peace and equality.
Avi and Siwar Mansour, Palestinian violinist from Tira
Heartbeat in the Negev Desert
Spread the word, spread the love, and see you out there!