MONTREAL - Even the most ardent believer in music’s healing power will acknowledge that the greatest sax solo in history can’t stand up to the thunderstorm of horror and evil in the world.
But that horn’s wailing might remind us of a human connection we share. And who knows what that kind of mindset can accomplish — particularly when it pops up in patches all over the planet.
That, in essence, is what those involved in a Concordia University jazz concert for the 12th annual Daniel Pearl World Music Days event will tell you.
Pearl, working as a bureau chief for the Wall Street Journal, was kidnapped and beheaded in Pakistan by al-Qaida in 2002. From that year on, Daniel Pearl World Music Days have been held every October, the month of his birthday. To date, more than 11,000 performances in 129 countries have taken place in honour of the journalist, who played violin.
The Daniel Pearl Foundation, which also sponsors lectures, a journalism fellowship and an international news website for secondary school students, describes its stated mission as “(promoting) tolerance and understanding internationally through journalism, music and dialogue.”
According to trumpeter Charles Ellison, Concordia’s coordinator of jazz studies, Thursday’s concert by members of the university’s music faculty was already scheduled when the department was approached by the United States Consulate to make the performance a Pearl awareness-raising event...Tell it to the Jew-despising decapitators, Chuck.
Ellison said he hopes people will gain an “elevated appreciation of jazz and of the oneness of humankind” from listening.