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With the holiday season now upon us
and the start of 2018 fast approaching, 
all of us here at Polyphony would like to
extend our warmest holiday wishes,
and to update you on what we’re up to.


Nabeel Abboud-Ashkar

Co-Founder, Polyphony
Executive Director, Polyphony Education

Upcoming Christmas Concert
Nazareth's celebrated annual Christmas concert returns Friday, December 22nd and, we're proud to say, it has completely sold out!  This year we are delighted to host world renowned violinist, Carolin Widmann, who will be traveling from Germany to join Polyphony's Galilee Chamber Orchestra conducted by Polyphony Artistic Adviser, and noted concert pianist, Saleem Abboud.  For those unable to attend, don't fret, we will be live streaming festive event on our facebook page...
                            Stay tuned!

 Streaming Live!

This Friday, December 22nd
1:30pm Eastern USA
and 8:30pm Israeli tIme

 Special Guest Artist
Violinist Carolin Widmann
Scholar in Residence Seminar
Again this year, Polyphony's Scholar in Residence Seminars will provide innovative musical training and cultural programing for mixed groups of our older and most dedicated students.

This December's seminars will mark the beginning of closer collaborations between Polyphony and our noted partners,
the Keshet Eilon Music Center and the Minerva Humanities Center.  Our students and leading academics and instructors will gather over two weekends, first in Nazareth and then at Kibbutz Eilon along Israel's northern border.

Polyphony brings first-hand experience in sustaining mixed Arab and Jewish musical groups and our success in developing earlier Scholar in Residence seminars.  Keshet Eilon adds their decades of fostering individual musical talent, enabling young string musicians from around the world to achieve their highest level of artistry. 

The Minerva Humanities Center of Tel Aviv University provides program content and conducts ongoing research to aid mutual understanding of other cultures, and will offer instruction on each culture's traditional connection to music, and how music has been and can be further used as a bridge across differences.   
With these partners, Polyphony is providing a supportive and artistically and academically rich environment for talented young Arab and Jewish musicians to explore their music together-- and to create lasting intercultural bonds.    
Alhan's Expansion
2017 has been a year of tremendous growth for our acclaimed ‘Alhan’ initiative of bringing music appreciation classes and concerts to the youngest elementary school students. 

Together with our new partner, the pedagogical powerhouse of the University of Bar Illan-- combined with the continuing support of Israel's Ministry of Education--  Alhan has evolved from taking a grassroots, bottom-up approach to providing top-down practices that ensure consistency and greater impact throughout the program.

These changes are well illustrated by program expansions within the Zvulun Regional Council.  Based on last year's promising results, they have implemented the Alhan curriculum across the majority of both Arab and Jewish schools in their region.  These developments have created more opportunities for positive interactions, and the increase in deeper relationships among Arab and Jewish neighbors.

Additional Alhan success stories this year include:
  • With the cooperation of Israel's Ministry of Education, Polyphony now manages 5 new Arabic language music centers in northern Israel. 
  • These music centers employ Alhan's curriculum and cater to kindergartens in Acre, Tur'an, and other nearby villages.
  • Polyphony has expanded into Bedouin schools in the southern part of Israel, primarily Segev Shalom, Rahat, and Hura.
  • Over 220 teachers are currently undergoing Alhan training, and are now teaching in 36 villages and cities across the country.

The reasons for Alhan's broad success is aptly described by one of the program's teachers, Wedian Sabra:

“My students love Alhan, they are always eager and excited for the next class to begin.  The syllabus is designed in a way that completely immerses the children in classical music, it encourages them to open up and inspires creativity. 

The support I receive from Alhan is unparalleled and indispensable.  They providea complete, professional, musical syllabus for each school year and supply me with all necessary instruments and materials.  I always feel secure in the knowledge that Alhan is here for me.” 
Taking it to the Streets!

In homage to the time-honored tradition of "busking" some of our student musicians brought their music making outdoors to promote our Nazareth Conservatory, and the Polyphony program overall.  See how they were quite the hit!
Let's keep in touch in 2018
2018 promises to be one of Polyphony's busiest years yet.  Be sure to follow us on social media for further updates, and keep an eye on our website for upcoming blog posts. 

We welcome your interest, and invite your support, which enables us to bring more young Arab and Jewish Israelis together through music!
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