Afghan Girls Orchestra, for #WATWB

WATWIC-Bright-TuqBlkIt’s time for this month’s We are the World Blogfest (#WATWB)! In a world where news and social media are awash with negativity, we aim to turn the focus on to small but significant stories that renew our faith in humanity.

My article for this month is about Zohra, an all-female orchestra from Afghanistan. Named for a Persian music goddess, the orchestra toured the world earlier in the year, starting at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. The musicians are all very young, most not out of their teens. And many of them are the first in their families, or even in their entire provinces, to play an instrument.

I was touched especially by the story of the 18-year-old conductor, who played the viola when she was an instrumentalist. Her uncle was initially against her playing in the orchestra, but he eventually grew to be proud of her.

“I’m happy that at least I changed my family,” she said, adding, her fellow musicians, too, “are going to change their families and when their families are going to change, you can have a society which is changed.”

Sign up to join us and be visited on the last weekend of the month when you post your article.  Click here to enter your link on this Linky Tools list! This month’s #WATWB co-hosts are: Simon FalkRoshan RadhakrishnanInderpreet Uppal, Sylvia Stein, and Damyanti Biswas. Please stop by and say hello!

13 thoughts on “Afghan Girls Orchestra, for #WATWB”

  1. I’ve seen a feature on these brave girls. Education and art can break the cycle of violence this country is caught up in. Thanks for sharing about these girls– they deserve to be spoken about more widely.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi KL – what an amazing orchestra … I hadn’t heard of them before … it is wonderful how music can lift children from their poverty, and from their lack of education – giving them an opening into a fairer world. I shall definitely keep an eye open for reports on them in the future …

    Wonderful #WATWB … thanks so much – cheers Hilary

    Liked by 1 person

    1. There is a woman from Uzbekistan in one of the orchestras I play in now (in California–she’s an immigrant). I had to look Uzbekistan up on a map, and saw that it shares a small border with Afghanistan. This Uzbek woman physically resembles the Afghan woman conductor pictured in the linked story, although she is at least 10 years older. According to her, the musical tradition in Uzbekistan resembles the tradition in Russia. It’s very strict and demanding and produces high-quality musicians. I wonder if there used to be traditions and a culture like that in Afghanistan as well before the fundamentalists took over.


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