al Qalam: Poetry in the Park
featuring New York Arabic Orchestra
WASHINGTON STREET HISTORICAL SOCIETY
June 17, 4 - 5pm
The Battery Labyrinth
FDR, Battery Pl
All events in the River To River Festival are free and all are welcome
al Qalam: Poets in the Park will be performed by three musicians from the New York Arabic Orchestra who will collaborate with two reciters, Hani Bawardi and Rita Elojail Zihenni, to celebrate the literary contributions of the early Arabic-speaking community in Lower Manhattan. Predominantly Syrian and Lebanese, these early writers formed a literary association called al Rabitah al Qalamiyah (the Pen Bond), among whose founders was famed author, poet and artist Kahlil Gibran. The musicians will integrate their classical Arabic music with the poetry readings, using traditional musical instruments.
Presented in partnership with Washington Street Historical Society and The Battery Conservancy.
NEW YORK ARABIC ORCHESTRA has transformed Arabic music education in New York City and impacted thousands of students and concert-goers since 2007. The NYAO has swept the world with powerful performances and workshops, from Lincoln Center Out-of-Doors, Damrosch Park and Detroit Symphony Hall, to Festival Musicas Do Mundo in Portugal and Taipei Silk Road Music Conference in Taiwan. Through concerts and classes, the NYAO watched countless non-natives transform their lives toward the pursuit of Arabic music; and thousands of Arab-Americans, inspired to revive the music of their upbringing and youth, become forever changed by the experience of Arabic music.
The Battery Conservancy was founded to revitalize New York’s birthplace park and its major landmark, Castle Clinton National Monument. The Conservancy designs, builds, maintains, and activates the historic Battery’s 25-acres of public parkland at the southern tip of Manhattan. In partnership with the City of New York’s Department of Parks and Recreation and the National Park Service, the Conservancy brings inspired vision and targeted resources to the park inspired by an ethos of environmental stewardship, historical authenticity, design excellence, innovative education, and openness to all.