DETROIT – The Michigan Arab Orchestra has a new mission and a new name. Now called the National Arab Orchestra, the expansion of its mission was announced by the Orchestra’s Board Chairman, Moose Scheib. Under his leadership and vision, Scheib will direct the organization into broader opportunities across the United States and internationally.
“We believe that the future of the National Arab Orchestra can be a powerful musical voice and a contributor to our global community,” Scheib said.
The orchestra was the recipient of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundations “Knight Arts Challenge” for its innovative music program that will benefit Detroit students.
The Orchestra’s signature program, Building Bridges Through Music, will help foster cultural awareness and understanding through an afterschool Arabic music program providing instruction to students throughout the city of Detroit. The Orchestra hopes to expand the program into other communities needing the same student music program.
The Orchestra was recently awarded $100,000 from the Knight Foundation to establish the program.
“By using The Knight Foundation grant award as an example of what can be done by making it possible for students to expand their diversity awareness through the power of music, we believe this model can be replicated as we bring music to larger national audiences, and build dialogue while we share our cultural experiences,” Scheib said.
With this expanded initiative, students will have the opportunity to work with instructors who are members of the orchestra, as they learn the beauty of Arab music, experience the unfamiliar sounds of its native instrumentation, and the depth of its vocal and instrumental repertoire. The benefit of this musical experience will be the opportunity to share Arab culture with its roots in the sounds, rhythm, and rhymes of classical Arab music.
Michael Ibrahim, the orchestra’s musical director and conductor will take the lead on the educational program and performances.
For more information about the Orchestra, tickets to the next show, or to make a donation, go to ArabOrchestra.org.