Wednesday, December 13, 2006

INSO E-Newsletter: Episode 14

Bi-Monthly Newsletter
Of the
IRAQI National Symphony Orchestra (INSO)
Episode 14 
April 2003
Distributed by Al-Wafaa NewsWebsite:

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In the name of all those who died, were injured and are living under the horror of the American aggression since March 19th, we dedicate this issue!

In this episode:
1. News & Reports
2. Interview w/ INSO Musicians in Baghdad on April 18
3. How to Become a Subscriber of This INSO Email Bimonthly Newsletter

1. NEWS & Reports:

Munther J. HafethHisham Sharaf and Majid (pronounced Maajid, not Majeed) Al-Ghazali were interviewed live on April 18 on National Public Radio's The Connection. This is a historic interview and worth listening to in its entirety. More details below.

* In a report from Zaid Esmat Shawket (former Iraqi National Symphony Orchestra concert master), who is currently living with his wife in France and has been there for a couple of months to study Ph.D. in Math, we learned that Zaid had lost one of his family members, his mother's sister, May Al-Haydery. Her uncle was the famous Dr. Salim Al-Haydary of Al-Haydary Hospital. She is the wife of Munir Al-Mala'ika, uncle of famous poet Nazik Al-Mala'ika. Munir has been injured as well. May Al-Haydary was killed by the American bombing of Al-Mansoor Quarter as she was trying to find medicine for her retarded daughter. Her mother (Zaid's grandmother), Charlotte Josef Ernest, who is British, still resides in Baghdad despite all the bombings. Charlotte is 92 years old. Zaid Shawkat wrote, "At my aunt's house at Abu Nuwas Street, there were music concerts held by the famous pianist Beatrice Ohanessian and some other musical activities. Munir and May were regular attendants of the INSO concerts. Under this environment, I lived and loved music and became a member of the INSO. "Zaid's picture maybe accessed in the link below:


2. Live from Baghdad: Interview w/ INSO Musicians
By WBUR's Dick Gordon on April 18

Here is the link:
Commentary by Wafaa' Al-Natheema

One troubling and insensitive request made by the interviewer, Dick Gordon, was asking Husham Sharaf, whose house was damaged by the US bombing and who lost one of his fingers, to "smile for us." The typical "Tumble-for-us" American-style journalism, which reminded some of us of Dan Rather's interview with Saddam Hussein shortly before the war, when he asked Hussein to speak a little English for the viewers! After all the damage the US has inflicted on Iraq, and instead of apologizing, Gordon was expecting a smile from someone who had suffered tremendously by asking him live in front of millions of listeners, an approach that can be equated to force!

3. How to become subscribers of this (INSO) list?

If you have not subscribed to this list, this is the only message you receive. To subscribe, please send an email to by writing 'subscribe' in the message box NOT in the subject title. Thank you.Please note that Al-Wafaa News is an independent newsletter, which focuses on the arts and social issues.


The INSO Writing/Editing Team:
Munir Allahwerdi, Clarinet Player, Engineer (INSO) [Austria]
Munther J. Hafeth, Composer, Musician (INSO) [IRAQ]
Nahla Jajo, Violinist, Architect (INSO) [France]
Beatrice Ohanessian, Composer, Pianist (INSO) [USA]
Bassim H. Petros, Cellist, Music Critic (INSO) [New Zealand]
Wafaa' Al-Natheema, List Moderator & Concert Tour Organizer [USA]