Harmony Beat

William Harvey's thoughts about cultural diplomacy and news about Cultures in Harmony, the non-profit he founded in 2005.

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Location: San Juan, Argentina

violinist, violist, educator, composer, conductor, arranger, cultural diplomat

Friday, February 10, 2012

In Pakistan

On Wednesday, nearly 600 people crammed into the French Institute of Afghanistan in Kabul to listen to the gala concert concluding the Second Annual Afghanistan Winter Music Academy, a project of Afghanistan National Institute of Music. It was thrilling to hear the explosive standing ovation that followed my arrangement of Ravel's Bolero as performed by the Afghan Youth Orchestra, which I also conducted. I am so proud of all my students! Read more about this event: US Embassy Press Release and Xinhua article (Chinese news agency, English version)

Now, I am switching gears as I begin a ten-day trip to Pakistan to plan for Cultures in Harmony's big project there later this year. I have been in Islamabad for less than a day and have already enjoyed jamming with local musicians and re-visiting some of my favorite cafes and restaurants from the first two CiH projects here (in 2009 and 2010).

If you want to know what cultural diplomacy can look like, a great place to start is this documentarya that aired nationally on Pakistan's Dawn News in 2009 about our first project here. As I plan for future work, I hope that we can build on this past success to create an even greater impact as we use the map music provides to chart our way from heart to heart.

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