SUN. FEB 14 | "The Art of Transformation" with Huda Asfour (musician) and Lucy Kurtzer-Ell
Following the 7:30PM performance, join us for a post-show discussion with Lucy Kurtzer-Ellenbogen (US Institute of Peace) and music by Huda Asfour.
Huda started her formal training in Tunis at the age of 13. She chose the oud inspired by her grandfather Thanoun Jarrah. After a short stay in Gaza, Huda moved with her family to Ramallah, were she met Khaled Jubran who shaped much of her music education. In Ramallah, Huda met Tamer Abu Ghazaleh, Palestinian composer and entrepreneur. They ended up founding "Jehar" in 2002, a series of shows experimenting with the reinterpretation of arabic and folk music. The project featured musicians from Egypt and Palestine.
Huda's journey with engineering, began in the year 2000. What started as a reluctant journey to fulfill her parents desires, transformed into a passion for science and research. The journey led Huda to Washington DC, where she completed her PhD at GWU. For over 7 years in DC, Huda had the chance to meet people from all walks of life, from all colors and races. Also in DC, Huda met a beautiful community of Palestinians with whom she started the DC Palestinian Film and Arts Festival. http://www.dcpfaf.org/
While tackling heart arrhythmias with the most inspiring and craziest scientists Huda knew , she wrote and recorded her debut album Mars, back and forth.
Mars, was Huda's search for home and for identity. A trip to a world without borders. Undefined by labels and boundaries. The god of war, that shaped Huda's early years, from the mountains of Lebanon where she was born during the Israeli invasion, to the early years of the second intifada (uprising) in Ramallah. In 2011, through a grant from "Al mawred Al Thaqai", Mars was born. In an exceptional autumn week, DC hosted Kinan Azmeh from Syria on clarinet, old friend Nadim Khoury on buzuq, John Hadfield on percussion and Kris Funn on bass, and Ayman Mabrouk (a long and sad story and too unreal to tell here), while Ahmed Foula was hard at work on the cover and the booklet of this album.
Lucy Kurtzer-Ellenbogen is the director of Arab-Israeli conflict programs at the U.S. Institute of Peace (USIP). Her focus is on the role of both grassroots peacebuilding and official diplomacy in Israeli-Palestinian conflict resolution efforts, and while at USIP she has authored or co-authored chapters on Israeli and Palestinian religious peacebuilding efforts for two different institute publications. She joined USIP in 2010 as a doctoral candidate in Arabic linguistics, and having worked with the U.S. Department of State as an Arabic language specialist. Previously, as a program officer at the Kennedy School of Government’s Middle East Initiative, Kurtzer-Ellenbogen managed work on the Israeli, Palestinian, and Saudi Arabian portfolios. Trained in Middle East studies and sociolinguistics, and proficient in Hebrew and Arabic, her graduate research considered presentations of social identity in Arabic media and political discourse, with a focus on the Arabic language press in Israel, and the Palestinian Arab citizens of the country. Her professional and academic career has taken her throughout the Middle East, with considerable time spent in Egypt, Israel, the Palestinian Territories, and Yemen. She holds a bachelor's degree in Arabic and French from Georgetown University, and a master's degree from Georgetown's Arabic department with a dual concentration in linguistics and Arab area studies.