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British Arabian Nights concert

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by Sandra Lawson (subscribe)
To paraphrase Dorothy: 'There is no place like London.' I hope I can convince you of that here. Also check out my blog at and my theatre reviews at
British Arabian Nights Builds Harmonious Bridges
We may disagree with the politics of others, the media may manipulate us into beliefs that are not justified, and even political propaganda often promotes agendas that are not correct. At the time of writing, the remains of King Richard III, the last Plantagenet king of England have been confirmed. This was a man who was demonised by the Tudors, who followed him on to the throne, but now the record is being set straight.

In the same vein, why not let music build bridges between Britain and the Arab world? Forget about religion and cultural beliefs and spend an evening at British Arabian Nights, immersing yourself in an evening of music where East meets West. The late Edward Said joined with Daniel Barenboim to form the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra, bringing together musicians from Palestine, Israel and other Arab middle eastern countries, and those musicians are still playing together, proving that religion is no barrier to making, and enjoying, music.

British Arabian Nights, on 13 February, will raise funds for British-Arab Exchanges (BAX). Among several aims the money will go towards programmes for Palestinian youth leaders, paying the costs for a UK delegation to visit the Palestinian territories this spring, and for a 40th anniversary forum for BAX alumini, which will take place in Egypt in the autumn.

British Arabian Nights
British Arabian Nights (Image Courtesy of

The musicians, including a flautist, vocalist and two pianists, one jazz and the other classical (Riyad Nicolas) will perform music rooted in both Jazz and Arabic traditions and will also perform songs made famous by the legendary Lebanese singer Fairuz. By attending the concert you will be helping to raise funds to help young people improve their lives within their own communities. And you will also be sending out a message that music transcends politics.

Riyad Nicolas
Riyad Nicolas (Image Courtesy of
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Why? To listen to a programme of music where East meets West and to raise funds to build further bridges between East and West.
When: 7.30pm on 13 February
Where: St Michael's, Chester Square, SW1W 9EF
Cost: 10 and 15
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