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HAPPENED TODAY - On April 21, 1951, the cellist and composer Aleksandr Krein died in Moscow

Karim Wasfi


Taking advantage of the positive opportunities offered today by the web, I contact Master Karim Wasfi, Founder and President of Peace Through Arts and ask him if he is available for an interview. His “sure” comes direct and immediate. Few days and the answers to my questions come…

When, and how was your love for music born? Why did you choose to play the cello?
Baghdad Iraq, back in 1978, by 1985 I had realized the impact and the beauty of connectivity to higher powers through sound and meditation. The sound and frequency were always apparent as an expression and a connection.

Where did you study? Who were your most important teachers?
Baghdad music and ballet school – Svetlana Ivanonva and Bloomington Indiana with Janos Starker, Tsiushi Tsutsumi, attended the class of Rostropovich

What were the most important goals of your musical career?
To connect humanity into a higher level of awareness and consciousness through vibration, towards an understanding of creation.

Then, one day, you started playing in your town, wherever the war had brought destruction and death. When did you decide to do it and why?
1991 but could not share it back then as there were no social media, later after many years, returning and after being the conductor of the national symphony in Iraq (2007-2016), during 2014 I started taking my battle globally against terror and radicalization.

What do you play in these places hit by bomb violence?
I had the path of instant compositions in support of life and in condolences of those whom we have lost. I composed Metamorphosis, Baghdad Mourning, Transcendence, a path of spirits and equilibrium.. for solo cello
and electronics and solo cello

How do people react, when you play in these situations?
Very supportive and it elevated all of us to higher levels of compassion and awareness.

And how do you feel when you give voice to suffering? Immersing yourself in suffering, accepting it in yourself, and giving it a voice can help you to create hope that a better world is possible?
Supporto della vita e profondità dell’universo.

What were, in your opinion, the most symbolic stages of your musical journey inside the places of suffering?
Playing in Mosul and Baghdad to battle terrorists.

Before you, other cellists have felt within themselves the need to choose the stage of life, leaving that of the theater: Rostropovich accompanied with the sound of his cello the fall of the Berlin Wall, Vedran Smailovic mourned the destruction of Sarajevo. Why, in your opinion, the cellists fell so strongly the desire to give voice to the most dramatic moments in the history of mankind?
Because we have a deeper connection to creation and the universe.

Music has always created bridges of peace, and musicians have often given voice to the unnecessary suffering produced by the war. Music forces us to reflect, but … to play is really enough to change the world?
No. We have to educate, aspire, change through proactive preventive powers to eradicate reasons for terror.

Thank you very much, Maestro, for your kind availability! We all hope that the world can really find peace through the arts…