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National Identity and the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra

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Author(s): Solveig Riiser

Journal: Music and Arts in Action
ISSN 1754-7105

Volume: 2;
Issue: 2;
Start page: 19;
Date: 2010;
Original page

Keywords: music | peace building | middle east conflict

ABSTRACT
This article examines the role of national identity in the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra, an orchestra consisting of young musicians from Egypt, Israel, Palestine, Turkey, Lebanon, Syria and Iran. The article is built upon the idea that there are constant negotiations at play in the orchestra, including among the musicians internally, between them and the orchestra’s founder and conductor Daniel Barenboim, and between the orchestra and its larger political and geographical context. This article unveils the inner dynamics of the ongoing identity negotiations in the orchestra, and the politics and power-mechanisms informing and defining these negotiations.
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