Solidarity in A Time of Pandemic
On 5 August, 2020, the Bussola Institute held a unique ‘on-line’ cultural event reflecting on the themes of solidarity and shared experience during this unprecedented time of pandemic. Four celebrated musicians, Jean and Fiona Kelly, Attab Haddad and Louise Anne Duggan, from Arabic sounds and Western melodic flavours, showcasing fusion across world music: the lyrical notes of the flute and harp from Europe alongside the oud and traditional percussion instruments used in Arabic music in both folk and classical music throughout the Arab speaking world. The event opened with a piece specially composed by the harpist, Jean Kelly, recorded separately during the lockdown but combined to produce a soundtrack to a video presentation to emphasise our shared humanity and human solidarity that have emerged as arguably the most positive elements during otherwise dark times for our world. This was followed by individual live performances of further musical excerpts, interspersed with short discussions with each participant about the significance and resonance of the music they are performing, and the cultural origins of the instruments they play so movingly and evocatively.