On February 26, Conductor Lorin Maazel led the New York Philharmonic on an unprecedented concert in Pyongyang, North Korea, at the invitation of the North Korean government. It was the first time a major American orchestra had performed in the communist country. The program opened with the national anthems of both North Korea and the United States, then moved on to music from Wagner’s Lohengrin, Dvorak’s “New World” Symphony and Gershwin’s An American in Paris; the orchestra encored with the overture from Leonard Bernstein’s Candide and with “Arirang,” a much-loved Korean folk song described by the Associated Press as “an unofficial anthem for reunification … [of] the rival Koreas.” The concert was broadcast nationwide; a senior U.S. diplomat reportedly told Maazel that the concert “could well have done more for U.S.-North Korean relations than 30 years of diplomatic efforts.”
Bassam Aramin and Zohar Shapira, the co-founders of Combatants for Peace, talk about their mission to end the cycle of violence in Israel and Palestine by bringing together individuals who previously fought against each other. A former member of the Palestinian Fatah movement, Aramin began a seven-year sentence in an Israeli prison at age 17. He now works as a clerk at the Palestinian National Archives. Shapira served as combatant and commander in an elite unit of the Israeli army for 15 years. He now is a teacher in a Waldorf school in Israel. Currently more than 550 Palestinians and Israelis are members of the group.
A conversation with JAN EGELAND, former UN Undersecretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs about our responsibility to help end suffering and loss of life in wars and disasters. His new book is “A Billion Lives: An Eyewitness Account from the Frontlines of Humanity.” Listen to this show via Real Audio | mp3
Soul-funk contingent Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings join host David Dye on the World Café to perform songs from their new album, 100 Days, 100 Nights. Vocalist Sharon Jones wants to make music you can feel in your soul, and she and her band are sure to move you. They have been turning out quality music for years, but 100 Days, 100 Nights draws more from ‘60s Motown than the ‘70s soul of their previous albums. Clearly Jones’ moniker “Queen of Funk” is well-deserved; the album delivers on raw emotion and fiery grooves.
SHARON JONES & THE DAP KINGS: 100 Days, 100 Nights