A festive crowd of more than 600 music lovers celebrated Daniel Pearl World Music Days with musical performances at the U.S. Consul General’s Residence in Karachi. Top of the billing was U.S. saxophonist Lee Redfield and an ensemble of musicians from the National Academy of Performing Arts (NAPA), followed by a local rock band: Raahi.
“Daniel Pearl World Music Days celebrate the life and work of journalist and musician Daniel Pearl,” said U.S. Consul General Brian Heath. “Tonight’s performance — one of many being held around the world this month —affirms our belief in in the ideals of international friendship and harmony.”
“Daniel Pearl worked to promote cross-cultural understanding with simply a pen and a fiddle,” said Mr. Heath. “I am confident that he would have been delighted to witness tonight’s performances. It is a wonderful way to celebrate Pearl’s life and harness the power of music to promote cross-cultural understanding,” said Mr. Heath.
Across the world, journalists like Daniel Pearl are working to strengthen democracy and promote peaceful understanding between people, often at great personal risk, said Mr. Heath, while noting that this is the most dangerous and deadly period for journalists in recent history. “In addition to Daniel Pearl himself, tonight we pay tribute to all journalists who have been killed while on assignment in the field,” said Mr. Heath.
Among the musicians performing was Lee Redfield, who is visiting Karachi as part of a three-year university partnership — funded by the U.S. State Department — between the University of Texas at Austin and NAPA. The State Department also sent two of Raahi’s musicians to the United States on exchange programs. In 2012, drummer and band organizer, Louis “Gumby” Pinto, joined the Center Stage artist exchange program, while vocalist, Ahsan Bari, participated in the International Visitor Leadership Program “Promoting Social Good through the Arts.”
Daniel Pearl World Music Day is an international network of concerts that takes place throughout October. The theme of Daniel Pearl World Music Days concerts is “Harmony for Humanity,” which supports tolerance, diversity and the belief that the power of music can bridge differences.